Last week, I was struggling to figure out how to transfer money from our American account to the notaire in France. The account numbers didn't match. I couldn't get anyone from our bank to help by phone or email.
I needed to transfer money for the purchase of our house, and it has to be there by August 5 when the deal goes through. I wasn't worried, we still had more than a week and everything happens instantly online, right?
(I should point out that many people use a transfer service, like Transferwise, but our bank does not charge a fee and has always given us a good rate so we just use it. If you have fees, you should definitely look into the companies that do it.)
I finally decided to transfer the money to our French bank account. I had transferred money there before in a large-ish amount.
So on Friday I sent the money.
The next day, I got a secure email from our bank with 4 questions that I must answer because they had started an "inquiry" about the money transfer.
I had written the word "maison" in the notes to myself. Maison is the French word for house.
The questions from the bank were
- What did "maison" refer to and was it a business?
- Where was this business?
- What kind of activity took place at this "maison."
- And finally, was any of it connected to Cuba?
Ok, I laughed a bit and answered the questions.
By Monday afternoon, the money had been released and the inquiry closed.
So I turned to my French bank. I had sent money to the notaire from my French bank previously, so it should have been easy. His account was already one of my beneficiaries.
On Tuesday, as soon as I made the "virement" or wire transfer, I received a message from my bank. They were investigating. It might take four days.
I counted the days on my fingers. Four business days? Did they count Saturday since they were technically open then?
Will the money arrive in time for the closing on Monday, August 5th?
It's all up to the French bank now. Fingers crossed.