Matching dream and reality when buying in France

I was recently lucky enough to be invited to share a delicious coupe de champagne with a very happy couple, newly ensconced in their beautiful home here in the foothills. The champagne was to celebrate the realization of a long-held dream and the start of a new adventure for my clients who had finally found their perfect house. These clients contacted me last year to ask for my help to find and buy a property out here in the Haute Garonne region of France. Their brief was similar to many of my clients; they were looking for that classic French house, a traditional stone building with lots of character, plenty of original features, wooden shutters, a bit of land, lovely views and in a peaceful and beautiful location where they could enjoy an excellent quality of life.

They had both always dreamed of living in France and they had talked about it many times. But each time they seriously considered making the move, something seemed to happen that persuaded them to put if off for another year. Of course taking the plunge and following a dream is not the same as taking unnecessary risks which is why they decided to hire me to ensure they had considered all the options and possible pitfalls as well as the opportunities. When you choose this lovely part of France, you are buying a way and quality of life not just a property investment and a ‘good buy’ means more than just getting a bargain. It is also easy to have your head turned and your heart stolen and forget to take into account the practical aspects that will make the dream a reality.

They had a clear wish-list but were realistic enough to know that there would always be some compromises needed and that their perfect house might not necessarily exist but that it could be created as long as the location and unchangeable details of a property were right for them.

After a few weeks of searching, having viewed all the houses on the market that seemed to match their criteria (eliminating 80% of them that did not  in reality or had potential problems), we had a short-list and after three days of viewings, they knew they had found their house.

They completed last week and I was privileged to be their first visitor in what I’m sure will prove to be a very happy home. It is never too late to follow your dreams; just make sure you have a professional helping you through the process so that those dreams become a wonderful reality and not a nightmare.

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