The idea of selling up house and home elsewhere and buying a gite complex or a similar business in France is very popular. This is for several obvious reasons, usually including some of the following:
- to leave an unsatisfactory job
- to adopt an 'easier' lifestyle
- desire to run a business rather than be an employee
- desire to live somewhere with better weather
For many this is a realistic possibility, since house prices have risen at different rates in different places. So many people in the UK, for example, may have a house worth £500,000 and hope to buy a gite complex for £400,000, and keep the rest aside for a rainy day.
The idea can actually work out, rather than remain as a dream. I should know - we moved to France five years ago to do exactly that, and have been successfully running gites for the last four years. So it is that experience that I will be calling on to write these articles. But the idea can fail as well, for a variety of reasons which I will also discuss.
This part of the site has the following sections:
- Why run gites in France
- How much to pay for your holiday rental business
- Day-to-day practicalities of running a holiday business
- Why might it fail
- Marketing gites
Why do you want to buy a Gite Business
This is the most important question, and you need to be able to answer it honestly. Note - it comes before the question about 'can you afford to sell up and buy some gites! If you want to live in the sunshine and gites is the only option you can think of that's not a very good start. If you think that operating gites will be easy, because there are only people on site ten weeks of the year, that is also not a very good start.
If you are very self-motivated to get on and do things, that is better. If you like dealing with people, and smiling when they complain, that is also a good sign. If you are practical, that is very useful - it is harder to make a living if you call a plumber every time you have a leaking tap.
If you like France and the French people that is a good sign. If you have never been to France and can speak no French that is a bad sign.
OK, so you've got this far and are still reading about buying a gite business. So the next question is whether it is financially practical, read part 2: How much to pay for gites