Buying a property in France

(4 Posts)
Funky1985 Mon 27-Jan-20 15:24:43

Hello wise mums,
I'm looking for any advice and experiences from anyone who has bought a property in France not to live in but to use as a holiday home and let out to others on airbnb or similar...

I am in the very early stages of looking into this so would appreciate any info anyone has.

I'd like to know how easy you found it to find the property and if you did this alone or employed someones services to help? Did the property require work or was it ready to go? How easy is it to rent out? Do you get lots of bookings?

Thank you x

OP’s posts: |
Costacoffeeplease Mon 27-Jan-20 16:14:02

I would be very careful about doing this at the moment. It’s not an easy thing at the best of times, you’ll need someone trustworthy to look after it for you, clean and prepare it for clients and arrange repairs and maintenance. Social charges and utilities are extremely high in France, and that’s without the dreaded B word

The number of bookings will depend on the area you choose and your target market, some parts of France are saturated with holiday accommodation

I would have a look at the Lay My Hat forum and ask on there as there are a lot of very experienced gite and b&b owners on there

shellyandlayla Tue 28-Jan-20 12:28:34

I'm live in Brittany and have a gite here that I have rented out for 15 years.

I agree with every word Costa says above!

I do all the advertising, cleaning, admin, and looking after guests myself (as well as pizza evening/bbq's/arranging restaurants tours etc etc for guests when they are actually here! I get most of my bookings direct or returnees from previous years, I advertise only with Brittany Ferries (so I can pass ferry discount on to everyone) and a Dutch company (all British owners here are really concerned with a potential lack of British guests after Brexit) But about 70-80% of guests are direct. I average about 35 weeks occupancy a year (last year was 41!) It's hard work and a year round job, if you want good occupancy it is hard work. Air bnb and Booking dot com will find you guests but they are brutal with their terms and commission (I think booking charge 20% to owners now and guests can cancel free up to the day of arrival)

We're in an area where demand is high and there are very few British owned gites around, so we tend to get a lot of Anglophones who maybe don't feel as confident dealing with a French speaking owner. There are so many different tourist areas in France, I would focus on where you think you might like to buy first. When we started searching we travelled the whole length of the Atlantic coast, from St Jean De Luz almost in Spain all the way up to Finistere and looked at well over 200 houses!

All that said, I love what I do, some guests have become good friends over the years and I've been able to make a living and be at home while my kids have grown up. I wouldn't change a thing smile

shellyandlayla Tue 28-Jan-20 12:30:00

Sorry for typos, rushing around too much!

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