Moving country to be self sufficient

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theabsinthefairy
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Location: Auvergne, France

Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 215870Post theabsinthefairy »

We ditched the UK for the Self Sufficient dream in the Auvergne region of France in 2006.

We have no regrets, our life is the physically hard working, family orientated, healthy, relaxed and self sufficient-ish lifestyle that we wanted.

But beware - French red tape is in a league of its own, some modicum of the language is a MUST, supermarkets are a lot more expensive than the UK, and until you are growing your own you will be reliant on them, building materials are very expensive if you are intending to renovate and if you cannot do it yourself you will find that the arisans are very dear.

We found the house we eventually bought on line, visited it a couple of weeks later, then a couple of months later, packed eveything we owned into an old lorry and the Land Rover and caravan, including 3 cats in a dog cage in the caravan with a litter tray and a puppy and drove for 3 days and nights to get here.

It has taken us 3 years to get the house finished (well almost finished), the garden is producing well, we keep chickens, ducks, geese, rabbits, quail, sheep and pigs. Our teen has settled in well at school and loves it here despite a shaky first few months with language issues.

Good luck and if you have any questions - feel free to ask.

Monika
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organicsi
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Location: Slovenia

Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 216025Post organicsi »

We bought a place n Slovenia, half finished modern house (shell) large agricultural buildings and about 4 acres of field and orchard for about 38k in 2007. I can't believe it now, everything was with us, exchange rate etc. We planned to open a campsite. However, we ended up (another piece of luck) getting teaching jobs out here. Problem with that is that we are now too flipping busy to work on our own project! Still at least we are in the same country as it, so some progress. Anyone who fancies room and board next summer, in exchange for some light slavery (once the bathroom has a door on of course) give us a shout in the spring! It truly is the best kept secret corner of Europe.

I suppose what I am trying to say is if you can , go for it! We have chanced our arm a bit ,we can't sell UK house due to the Credit Crunch and for the first 2 years one of us only had part time work. We ended most months with nowt and even now are just left with enough to pay some off the credit cards. BUT what will end up with is already worth 5 to 6 times what we paid and this will go up as we get it completed. And we ahve what we always dreamed of LAND!!! :santa:

clanpowell
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 246872Post clanpowell »

We finally got an offer that we accpted on our house today. Only 11 months since we put it on the market! We've made a massive £2000 on the price we got it for. All of this means that we are now one step closer to the ish dream. However we wont be celebrating just yet. Not untill completion date at any rate. Too many people we know have had buyers pull out at the last moment. :banghead:
French ishers, this also means that you are one step closer to ALOT of questions coming your way regarding things like, where to buy seeds, animals, internet, advertising yurts etc etc. Lucky you :wink:
Just a couple of months living with the inlaws to come!

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greenorelse
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Location: East Clare, West Ireland

Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 246874Post greenorelse »

We moved to the west of Ireland in 1998, bought a small house on an acre within cycling distance of a town (5 miles) and would not move back if you paid us. We'd have to be booted out. If you're prepared to put up with what is (and of course it should go without saying) a different culture and are prepared to fit in, then why not consider emigrating, wherever, I don't mean just Ireland? You have to be flexible and friendly. You can't do a thing about where you're born but you can - and should - influence where you live and die.

One thing to avoid is any kind of ghetto-isation. Go and live in amongst the natives, accept their culture and add to it as best you can. Good neighbours are worth more than money.

It helps that we play Irish music anyway - it means we don't need tv and mass entertainment etc and have almost ready-made friends and Clare has the best music to boot.

Also, I quite like the violent, usually unpredictable weather. If you can put up with that (it means making specific preparations to deal with the worst) then this place has a lot going for it but the weather would definitely not suit most!

Sure, it's a more expensive country to live in but you can live cheaply if you want, which is one reason to be here; they quite like eccentricities! Living a bit 'under the radar' is possible. Cutting your outgoings should figure more importantly than increasing you incomings.

I agree with a lot that Cligereen has written: you need polytunnel/greehouse/conservatory space to get half decent crops of anything. But bin charges? What are they? :iconbiggrin: Compost everything and visit a recycling centre twice a year for the real rubbish like plastic. If you need a bin collection, you're doing something wrong.

Otherwise, yeah, health costs are high, so you have to be in good health and do everything to maintain that health. But that is true anyway, surely?

Oh, and the bit about the government - yikes, what a bunch of shysters; they never learn. I think most Irish find the idea of government a bit of a joke, which is why they end up with jokers in power I suppose. Ho hum. All the more reason to stay under the radar.
There is no question. Cap and Share or TEQs is the answer. Even Cap and Dividend!

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The Riff-Raff Element
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 246901Post The Riff-Raff Element »

clanpowell wrote:We finally got an offer that we accpted on our house today. Only 11 months since we put it on the market! We've made a massive £2000 on the price we got it for. All of this means that we are now one step closer to the ish dream. However we wont be celebrating just yet. Not untill completion date at any rate. Too many people we know have had buyers pull out at the last moment. :banghead:
French ishers, this also means that you are one step closer to ALOT of questions coming your way regarding things like, where to buy seeds, animals, internet, advertising yurts etc etc. Lucky you :wink:
Just a couple of months living with the inlaws to come!
I'm sure we'll do our best to answer them. Whereabouts are you headed?

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Mrs Moustoir
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 246914Post Mrs Moustoir »

Bon courage for the move. :) Lots of us Ishers here in France.

Rereading this thread, I'd reiterate what the absinthefairy said about bureaucracy in France. Sadly it is very difficult to live 'under the radar' in a place where you have to have planning permission to erect a shed or greenhouse!

Don't want to dampen your enthusiasm, but please do your research. There was a recent case here where a British chap was evicted from his own land as he'd put up a yurt in woodland without planning permissions. He fought the eviction hard but in the end he had to dismantle the yurt leave his land. If you are contemplating buying land to put up yurts, speak to someone at the Mairie/townhall to check if it would be allowed before you buy.

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The Riff-Raff Element
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 246916Post The Riff-Raff Element »

Just to agree what Mrs M had to say.

French bureaucracy has a lot of hoops, and you need to be good at jumping.

One thing that it might be worth being aware of in advance - you might already know this: when buying land with a view to building anything it is possible (indeed, quite routine) to insert something called a "clause supensive" that nullifies the agreement if the buyer is unable for whatever reason to obtain planning permission for their project. Certainly talk to the local mayor, but do not rely on a verbal (or, come to that, written) assurance from them that what you want to do will be allowed. Cover your backside with a clause suspensive and wait for the formal approval. My wife is a councillor here and the horror stories she hear about mayors saying one thing and another thing happening are legion. :mrgreen:

clanpowell
Barbara Good
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 247152Post clanpowell »

Moving quickly now. Buyers surveyor came round today. Rather worryingly found damp on one of the walls, but in his words "Not serious, decorations will propably wear out before it's an issue" So wait and see again. Mad thing is that because I teach I can't leave my job untill the end of a term and will mean that I will still have to go to work here, potentially for 8 weeks after we sell the house! At least I've got a tent!

elisabeth
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 247216Post elisabeth »

We are in rural France, with chickens (eating and egg varieties), cat and dog, veggie patch, and walnut orchard. No neighbours for miles, no heavy traffic, and enjoy a sort of selfsufficincyish life. Couldn't possibly afford this in the UK. However, we only had 10 years before retirement pensions kicked in to survive on savings and garden. It is even harder now as "Cligereen" has noted above. Administration is a nightmare. But when you think of the thousands of Brits who move here, it is all possible with gritted teeth and patience. There are lots of helpful people to guide you through.
Do think very carefully though as it is nigh on impossible to go back. If you want to chat about it more thoroughly I'm happy to help.

JT101
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 247319Post JT101 »

Really good luck to you. Can't say anymore than that. Seems you've got it nailed.

Pumpkin&Piglet
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 247390Post Pumpkin&Piglet »

elisabeth wrote:We are in rural France, with chickens (eating and egg varieties), cat and dog, veggie patch, and walnut orchard. No neighbours for miles, no heavy traffic, and enjoy a sort of selfsufficincyish life. Couldn't possibly afford this in the UK. However, we only had 10 years before retirement pensions kicked in to survive on savings and garden. It is even harder now as "Cligereen" has noted above. Administration is a nightmare. But when you think of the thousands of Brits who move here, it is all possible with gritted teeth and patience. There are lots of helpful people to guide you through.
Do think very carefully though as it is nigh on impossible to go back. If you want to chat about it more thoroughly I'm happy to help.
This seems a bit silly and naive to ask but do you mean it's impossible to buy a house back in the UK or to physically move back into the country?

clanpowell
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 250007Post clanpowell »

Getting close now. Got a phone call today from our solicitor asking us for a completion date as our purchasers' deposit has gone through. Looks like first week in Jan, we are officially homeless!! Living with the inlaws here we come. ( :banghead: but eventually resulting in :brave: )

Pumpkin&Piglet
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 250016Post Pumpkin&Piglet »

Hooray for you :icon_smile:

Can't wait to come camping in France! :iconbiggrin:

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demi
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 250025Post demi »

hi everyone!

we've been rennovating a house in macedonia since 2008 ( keep stopping and starting due to running out of money numerous times )
we bought some land in january this year. just over 2 acres of orchard and growing land with a parcially built small house and some out buildings for 10,000 euros. its 4km from the center of the town where our house is that we're rennovating.
we've also just found out that we have another almost an acre a few km futher up the road from the land we just bought ( my husband is macedonian and the house in the center and this other land belongs to the family, of which he is the only child so now its ours :iconbiggrin: )
we're also on the look out for some more land round about the same location for growing animal feed/grazing animals on.

just now we are in scotland because iv just had another baby and my husband has taking the oppertunity to work in the UK again to save up the pennys to finnish the house. we've got our flights booked to go back in the beginning of feburay, in time for the start of the growing season :iconbiggrin:

so our plans for when we get back is to get the house finnished finally, hopfully by the end of the summer.
as soon as we get back we're converting the shed in the garden into a chicken house and fencing off 1/2 the garden from the dog for some hens for eggs to start with.
we'll also be maintaining the orchard and selling the fruit, which my father in law has already been doing for us this summer while we've been in scotland.
the following year hopfully the house will be finnished and we can turn our full attention to farming.
we plan on getting free range chickens and turkeys for meat, miking goats for cheese/butter/cream ect, and pigs for meat and to clear and fertalize the land for growing veg/hay/amimal feed ect.
hopfully we will be able to sustain ourselves and our animals from our land :iconbiggrin:

iv bought a cream seperator to get the cream out the goats milk, and an ice cream maker for ice cream :iconbiggrin:
and we also bough an electric fence. i think we will be raising a few eyebrows at customs from all the bazzar the stuff in our bags :lol: they dont have these things over there which is why iv bought them from the UK, obviously.

cant wait to get back and finallt get stuck into making our plans a reality!
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kr1I3mBojc0

'If you just close your eyes and block your ears, to the acumulated knowlage of the last 2000 years,
then morally guess what your off the hook, and thank Christ you only have to read one book'

clanpowell
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Re: Moving country to be self sufficient

Post: # 251136Post clanpowell »

Here we go!
We are finally leaving this friday. Solictors only let us know yesterday so 3 days of frantic packing ahead!!

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