Whenever I visit London I normally make a point of dropping into Stanfords bookstore in Covent Garden, that venerable stockist of all manner of travel related paraphernalia. It's easy to lose hours in this mecca to travel. I have been haunting this store for over twenty years and have amassed an extensive library of guide books and maps. During a recent trip to London I picked up “Walking the Brittany Coast” by Wendy Mewes, a writer living in Finistère. The guide book is part of a series on walking in Brittany - strangely enough! This book covers our patch of Brittany, namely the stunning coast of Finistère. Andy and I are keen walkers and we are hoping to do some of the walks suggested by Wendy during our next visit to Ty Hir. Going by some of the pictures in the guide we have some real treats to look forward to – I can’t wait until we are back out there in June – fingers crossed the weather will have rained itself out by then! We already have a number of Wendy's other books and you can find some more of them mentioned on our Walking page.
As I have mentioned before, the property buying process is different in France to that in the UK. The Notaire is a public official who performs various duties under the authority of the French Government including administrative tasks associated with the sale and purchase of property. They should know if a motorway or railway is planned for the area and would usually be aware of any restrictions which could affect the enjoyment of the property. If they don’t know, they will find out – if asked! The notaire normally acts for both parties, and is usually chosen by the vendor. They have a duty to provide impartial advice.
The Notaire’s fees for negotiating a sale are fixed according to a scale. They currently are calculated at a rate of 5% up to €45,735 and 2.50% thereafter, excluding VAT (or TVA!). In addition, you must allow for the legal costs in preparing the deed. These can vary from 8 to 12%. The majority of this money goes in regional, departmental and governmental taxes depending upon the area. Notaires de France have quite a comprehensive website (in English) on the subject of buying and selling of houses in France – I highly recommend that you spend some time browsing this to familiarise yourself with the buying process in France: Notaires de France - Housing
Here is a nice picture (well I like to think it's nice anyway...) of Beaulieu-Sur-Dordogne - one of the lovely villages that we visited in France during the summer of our first French property hunt. Hopefully it will distract you from that horrible image of dry rot above!