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seanL

small holding in france

Hello all,
I'm new to the forum so I apologise in advance if this has been asked elsewhere!
I'm just wondering what peoples experiences are of small holding in France? My family and I are keen to develop from an allotment and garden into something larger and are thinking the France may be a way forward that wouldnt involve an overwhelming mortgage etc.
Could people share their experiences of how they have managed the move, generating sufficient income and the apparently complicated byreaucratic system. I have read a fair bit and spoken to people in general "moving to France" terms but the specific experiences of smallholders would be really helpful.
Many thanks in advance
sean
gz

Croeso from SouthEast Wales Smile

I'm sure someone helpful will be along soon. Where are you based now?
seanL

Hi gz, we're based in soggy Devon at the moment!
tim_and_nicky

Hello and welcome
I don't know about France but Galicia in northern Spain is full of smallholdings and local knowledge and property with land is much cheaper. It is the normal way of life here but making a living is the hard bit. You still need an income although much less than the UK and unemployment is high in Spain.

In a perfect world I would keep a property rented out in UK as an income and then smallhold here in something much cheaper. More sustainable in the long term.

Otherwise you may end up like us with one of us working in the UK to fund the other small holding in the dream property.
seanL

Thanks Tim_and_nicky (not sure which one of you!).
That is something I am concerned by, although the nature of my current work is such that I will be able to carry on remotely to a degree it is something I'd rather avoid. I have a very firm focus on food both from my previous career and generally so I have a number of ideas centred around food. The reality is likely to be far removed from the vision in my mind though!
How do you manage with splitting working in UK and travelling back and forth from Spain?
tim_and_nicky

Well Tim does short term IT contracts, 3 months generally but we would like some remote working if we can get it and we are recently on the internet.
When we came here Tim had a contract for remote working but it was cancelled within a couple of months of getting here.
I just manage here on my own with very slow progress. I grow as much fruit and veg as I can and we have birds, rabbits and an occasional pig for meat. Outgoings are very low. Tim holidays between contracts but it is not a long term solution.

Here most people grow their own so producing local organic food is not a selling point for locals as they have it already and they tend to buy goods and services from the same family and friends as they have always done.
If you are near enough to a city you might be able to get into bigger markets but then you get into official production with all the accompanying insurance, inspections and legal issues.
tim_and_nicky

There are some pedigree goat breeders in France charging 500 euro for standard 3 month old goatlings. I would consider something like that if I thought I could sell them for that price.
I guess it is about finding a niche
seanL

Goats are something my wife is interested in but I'm not sure if that is a road we will go down yet. the question is do pedigree goats have more refined appetites!
London10

Re: small holding in france

[quote="seanL:1271638"]Hello all,
Hi there France is not easy most of all is money to survive then selling your produce if its all for yourself no problems .
there is a site smallholdings in france , people do manage it but its the income side of it that beats a lot of them like everywhere work is drying up , a french man will get a job before you .
Lots of cheap property , but rent to start with you can find this type of property with land, land is cheap compared to lots of other european countries
. look the site seloger.fr covers all of france for property also leboncoin.fr .
the breaucratic yes but it seems to look after them , there is a lot here who have taken early retirement have a monthly income , some have not doing it the hard way .
Also there are a huge amount here who want back to the Uk as they miss it so much and cannot fit in for many reasons or cannot find work for extra income .
Go south for better winters centre and north are so cold also for a longer growing season be near main towns not in the sticks so as you can sell your products or if you can produce other things then you have an income .
other sites to look at , totalfrance smallholding section , anfloinfo put in any region of france as there is one in each like angloinfo limousin or angloinfo gers .
hope this helps a little
there is a site helpx or workaway where you can come and work on a smallholding or small farm etc for free but you need to work 5 hours a day and weekends off but great way to see the system work and meet like minded people .
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