Buying a small holding in France
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Buying a small holding in France

by lazens » Tue Dec 11, 2007 4:13 pm

At a recent large property exhibition we were advised to buy a terrain de leisure which is a small piece of land where a caravan or chalet may be erected with the permission of the town council.However it varies from Council to Council whether this is granted to newcomers.
Does anyone know any areas to try?
Also if absent for 9 months of the year how do we best ensure security while away eg in the middle of winter when no one may want to rent?
Last edited by lazens on Sun Feb 13, 2011 2:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

welsh brickie
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buying abroad

by welsh brickie » Fri May 09, 2008 9:38 pm

I am living in turkey .
I would not buy here or anywhere else .Its the british thing thing to do
is to buy ,I rent any problems I complain to the agent,I have always owed my property, but all european countries rent property and its a
better option.
Your capital outlay is thousands of pounds in the hope of a good return
but if any problems occur your stuck with a property you cant sell.
Here in turkey I make 18% a month interest ,why invest thousands on
a villa when I can make so much in a bank here.
£100,000 will make £15,000 pa so why buy??????

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Re: Buying a small holding in France

by palwing » Sat Jan 17, 2009 3:15 pm

[quote="lazens"]At a recent large property exhibition we were advised to buy a terrain de leisure which is a small piece of land where a caravan or chalet may be erected with the permission of the town council.However it varies from Council to Council whether this is granted to newcomers.
Does anyone know any areas to try?
Also if absent for 9 months of the year how do we best ensure security while away eg in the middle of winter when no one may want to rent?[/quote]


You could always use housesitters during the off season.

Good luck.

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by johnev » Sat Nov 21, 2009 3:40 pm

I've had a second house in France now for over 7 years, in a village where over half the homes are holiday homes (mainly from Paris) and vacant quite a bit.
On the day we moved in the people opposite said that they looked after a few of the houses in the road (every morning opening up the shutters, every evening closing them etc.) and did we want them to do the same for them.
Being Brits we, of course asked how much and nearly restarted the 100 years war. "Our house used to be a holiday home until we retired here. It was looked after then and now we do the same. Charge! It is our civic duty!"
We ring them when we have a date for our return and in the winter they turn on or up the central heating before we arrive.
If/when we live there permanently we of course will do the same for others.
As to where this is in France - I'm not telling. Sorry but we chose the area not only for its wonderful scenery and wonderful people but also because we want a French home and not a Brit Enclave.
One tip: when you buy make sure you book an appointment with your local mayor. Just a chat to introduce yourselves. We did this during the conveyancing and by the time we took possession everyone knew who we were.

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by sheenashirley » Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:43 am

nice thread thanks for sharing its highly informative.

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Re: Buying a small holding in France

by Zombies » Fri Feb 10, 2012 5:04 pm

Depends on budget, try looking for a lake with a chalet in the Dordogne (picturesque)

for terrain only best looking coastal or 45mins to
the Vendee or Charente Maritime are nice places, the Gironde maybe or further down towards Biarritz

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Re: Buying a small holding in France

by GalTumpson » Fri Nov 23, 2012 4:36 pm

I'd try down near Bordeaux. Went down there a couple of years a go, brought a dilapidated farm house that was a bit of a hovel. Fixed it up, made a decent profit, even if me and my boy did have to sleep under the stars for a week as it was in the middle of nowhere. Worth it though, great location and beautiful country

Hugh Schkok
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Re: Buying a small holding in France

by Hugh Schkok » Fri Apr 26, 2019 10:23 pm

I bought two renoves around 25-30 years ago in an amazing part of southern France in the district of Provence-Alpes Cotes D'Azur around 150K from Avignon. One of the houses was too far gone and so I intentionally bought it for the oak and stone materials and of course the hardcore it provided. Some window frames and doors and frames were re-usable however some made a great bonfire. House two was cleaned up and with some English artisans we replaced the entire roof the walls needed repairs, pointing and rendering. We made the window frames and equally the doors and frames also. We set fire to the recovered oak joists and sand blasted them off and they were like brand new. They were soaked with horse pi55 and wood stain and left to bake in the sun. All this renovation was reviewed by the mayorie and the mayor himself often visited as he grew up not 5k from the place. I bought it specifically as a Pied dans le L'eau and it is has a huge 2000 Ha lake and a small river connecting it to an adjacent lake owned by a French celebrity, I dont' see them much and when we do meet we drink al my wine, eat my fromage and quaff down pile of fresh baguettes and thus far always at a set table outside. Many a time several of us have awoken in the morning with tilted glasses in our hands and all the food either eaten of bitten into and kept hold of. My greatest issues have always been with the mayorie and their planning rules which I am sure they make them up as they go along. Knowing and getting on well with the mayor is essential to make any progress and he has often told me to continue on and they will get the paperwork and sort that side of it later

We dug out and replaced the foundation. Installed a turbo and a wind turbine generator and on my island I have a wind turbine and PV panels which power my cabin. We replaced the comms satellite system and can no call anywhere we need on the earth. We build two heated boat sheds and already had twi datiments. One is my sooper doper workshop the other which was built earlier and to a high standard that housed the crews from England during the builds and is now a office and gun store with a view that people would happily kill for.

I often load up my boat that has and electric motor powered by batteries that are charged by two PV panels on top of the wheel house and a fresh water storage and cooler. I build one of my boats myself then other was renovated but both are electric driven. In my cabin on my island I have a very comfortable bed, a sjhower, a TV, Fridge,running filtered fresh water and fullelecrical power all comms are by walkie talks to my little pit viper who don't really go a bunch on island living but has been there several times and of course the cell phone the chargers are always on. Recently I have had fire sprinklers installed Tgey initially spray a fire retardant foam and if the fire is still going it sucks water from the lake. On the front side I have a stoop and would sit out at night just thanking the Big Yin for looking out for me.

I totally agree with an earlier poster you must have live in house sitters. We have a great family who we have built on an annexe for them and there is Gillles and Marie Claude mon et mdma and a garcon who is a former Gendarme.

They have full run, rent free and simple live there as their own. In our bedroom we have a magnificent balcony suitable for 50 people and often party up there I have a lift discretely hidden at the side of the house and that can be hand cranked or an additional motor at ground level allows me to get out if my very ferocious and physical ******* appetite gets out of control and set the bed alight. We can easily get my scooter and two people in and down to safety and the stair cases are front a former manoire in Hungary and look absolutely amazing. Our house guests polish them and clean them to look fit for a Princess to descend down.

I have accrued a lot of 'toys' over the years and the compulsory tractor, an Argonaut and work barges are no exception. We have my most favourite car ever invented my Citroen 2CV Called Misty and consume around a pint of fuel a week, and my Argonauts is able to get materials to my island with ease.
I do not allow any one and I mean anyone to fish, picnic or even visit my heaven on earthe excluding those we personally invite for a bloody good blast out. Oh boy they know how to party. I like them and respect them and will help them in any way as they do me.
The Mayor is delighted that France is being bought back to life by British architects, builders and farmers and does little to block our progress. However he was alittle hesitant in my keeping chickens as he began to visibly shudder when I said "what I don't know about chickens has not been hatched yet, oh and by the way how deep do I plant them and how far apart?" He looked rather concerned and said he would contact the ministry of furry animals and water fowl before he would be able to afford me permission. That was 9 years ago. My neighbour supplies all the eggs we need and milk and the occasional chicken but he seems to grow them without the polyethene skin that they have in the supermarket. How does he do that? He also has elephants that moo. I just have to have some of them. also he has piggies without slots in their backs - again a true enigma of agriculture. It's hard coming from a city and being released into the wild. It is therefore essential you make good friends with the neighbours and understand that they eat food from the wild. Tough to understand but tastes real good.
I'm going out there again soon for possibly some time and Let those that heed to know roughly when I'll be there and fill my cabin fridge with vin rouge and biere blonde et beucoup de la.
Au revoir et bon nuit Je suit dormer nmauntenant.

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