HOW TO MAKE YOUR DREAM A REALITY – DOS AND DON’TS
DO remember that it’s not a holiday – even if you love a place in summer, living there throughout the year will be very different. DO employ local professionals where possible – you’ll create strong links that you’ll be able to call on in the long-term if there’s an emergency, and you’ll be more popular for employing local workers. DO speak French – especially in rural areas of France where few locals speak English. DO have a contingency fund – you’re sure to need more money than you initially think, especially on a renovation project and especially on an older property! DON’T project-manage from abroad - you’ll need to be on-site if you want progress. DON’T overspend – prioritise, keep track of costs and don’t spend more than you can afford. Have a budget in mind and stick to it. DO go house-hunting in the winter, which will give you a realistic view of what the property and the area are like even when they’re not at their sunny best. Turn to page 78 for our expert guide to long winter lets.