Bonjour! My fiancee (soon to be husband) and I have recently taken the plunge and signed the Compromis de Vente on a lovely 18th century farmhouse about 20 minutes South of Cahors. We have a ‘date’ with the Notaire on 30 August to sign the Acte de Vente -so our new life in France isn’t far off.
As with many I have seen on this site, our plans are to combine a bit of remote work (I will continue my freelance work with an agency in London) with gite/chambres d’hote, cooking classes and a smallholding. We’ve done a load of research but nothing can replace real stories and experience.
So…hello to everyone here, and I am looking forward to learning more and meeting people who can share their wisdom!
I suggest you take the time to browse through all the main Headings and read through whatever topics appeal… everyone here is very friendly and there is a very wide range of experiences willingly shared…
You’ve probably sifted through all the info and identified what you need to focus on by now, but if I were in your very exciting position, these would be my priorities on the planning an income front:
Remote work - if you’ll be working from your home in France, you need to set up a business structure here. Various options, micro entreprise would be easiest if it suits your type of work and turnover, plenty of info on that on this forum and all over t’internet. Alternatively use a portage salarial company. Either way you can’t set it up until you arrive but if you decide in advance which route to take, it’ll help you hit the ground running. (If you’re going to return to the UK to carry out the work you will stay under the UK tax/NI system but you say “remote work” so I assume you won’t.)
Gites/chambres d’hote - ditto, plenty of info on how to set this up, who you need to register with etc
Cooking classes - that’s going to need a bit more research, both on the regulations and how you integrate it into the other business activities
Smallholding - if you intend to sell produce you need to start talking to the MSA / chambre d’agriculture and it can be a bit complicated, but if you grow purely for your own consumption it’s a lot easier. There is a blog post that I once came across describing first hand the experience of registering as a smallholder and also explaining the difference between registering as non commercial versus commercial, and it seemed so useful that I bookmarked it. It’s a few years old now though, so things might have changed yet again, you would need to check. Hopefully it’s allowed to post the link? James?
Wow- thank you Anna! That link is definitely useful. A good point about the priorities- it is a lot to do all at once and step wise will be the best approach. Remote work is definitely the first thing…then get the gites/chambres in order, then I think we will start thinking more seriously about the smallholding in Spring (as a first step it will just be for ‘self consumption’). The cooking classes are a longer term plan- once I am in a position to wind down my remote work a bit more…at first I think we will be more about eating all the fabulous food available!