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A VERY long term project - at last a progress report !

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A VERY long term project - at last a progress report !

Postby chataigner » 01 Jul 2015, 13:22

I have embarked on a VERY long term project - restoring a little town house. There is a double interest here, one is simply to make some of my savings (essentially earning nothing at the bank) work a bit by buying/restoring/letting the property, but at a second level, the land belonging to the house adjoins our garden at the rear and overlooks our rear courtyard, so I've had my eye on the land for some time. The house is located in a street at right angles to ours, so it is not actually next door, but because of the corner, the two plots meet at the ends.

The owner inhertited it from his grand parents and had vague plans to do it up, but is now in poor health himself, so I thought he might be open to an offer. I contacted him as it was not on the market (no agents fees) and in the end I got it for next to nothing. Given the low price and with me doing a lot of the work, it should be quite a profitable project. It has to be a rental as reselling other than main residence attracts punitive capital gains tax here. For the moment, contracts are signed, but the admin wheels grind slow and we have not completed yet, so I cant make a start except to remove the fences (which were on our land) and arrange better access.

It has stood empty for 15yrs or more, so nothing left of any value inside, kitchen and bathroom are both "rip out and burn". Wiring and plumbing are rudimentary to say the least, but it is on mains drainage. The roof needs attention, basic timbers (some old oak, some replacement sawn timber) seem sound, tiles and laths are shot, so are windows and doors. However, the walls are solid, 18th C stone built - basically, I'm buying a plot of land and a shell - the rest is to do.

Isabelle thinks I'm crazy - I'm retired and have no need to do any of this, but I do like to have a project...
Last edited by chataigner on 19 Sep 2019, 17:24, edited 10 times in total.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Commander » 01 Jul 2015, 13:46

Sounds very interesting! I will be keeping an eye on it. Good luck with all the admin stuff, hopefully it doesn't drag out too long!
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Robert » 01 Jul 2015, 13:59

So there will be a thread on here that is updated with amazing progress every day?

I've seen this house build / restore thing before and that is how it goes isn't it?

;)

:)
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby RogerS » 01 Jul 2015, 14:00

That sounds a fabulous project, David. We want photos!!
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Andyp » 01 Jul 2015, 14:49

Well done David. Project and income all in one and close enough to administer when complete.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby chataigner » 01 Jul 2015, 17:01

Robert wrote:So there will be a thread on here that is updated with amazing progress every day?

I've seen this house build / restore thing before and that is how it goes isn't it?

;)

:)


...no sorry, that only applies to Mike Garnham. :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Rod » 01 Jul 2015, 17:23

Great project - how long is very long?

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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby TrimTheKing » 01 Jul 2015, 19:17

Cool! Looking forward to the WIP thread... ;)

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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Rob » 01 Jul 2015, 19:18

The Perigord is one of my favourite places so it will have an added dimension of how you procure materials and generally make progress within the French system in addition to the normal wood working interest. I've always nurtured a dream of retiring there one day :-)
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Mike G » 01 Jul 2015, 19:22

Perigord Noire, ou Perigord Vert?

Either way, a photo or two would be great.......and good luck with the project. Nice to be able to snaffle the land that you wanted.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby chataigner » 02 Jul 2015, 07:01

Mike G wrote:Perigord Noire, ou Perigord Vert?

Either way, a photo or two would be great.......and good luck with the project. Nice to be able to snaffle the land that you wanted.


We are actually in Haute Vienne, but only 5km from the border with Périgord Vert. The national park covers a part of the south of Haute Vienne and a part of the north of Dordogne, hence "Parc Naturel Périgord-Limousin". The reason ? Although it is in two administrative areas, the area is unified by geology. It is the start of the foothills of the Massif Central, so it's hilly, rocky (granite) country with poor soil traversed by steep river valleys with good alluvial soil. It lives by agriculture and tourism. The agriculture is mainly cattle raising plus a few sheep, and it has a VERY low population density. Average for SE England (Excluding greater London) is over 500 people/km2. Average for Dordogne is around 80 people/km2. Average for the park area is 20/km2. I lived in Jumilhac-le-Grand (Périgord Vert) for 14 yrs - big house, a former iron master's house dating from early 1600's with 30 acres etc, which we bought semi abandoned and spent the years restoring it. But then I split up with my wife, hadn't the means to buy her share, so had to sell. Moved here with my new lady (french) in summer 2013. Did the essential installation of the workshop in the barn, updated the kitchen a bit, added a second bathroom to the guest room, then started looking around for the next project...
Last edited by chataigner on 02 Jul 2015, 07:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby chataigner » 02 Jul 2015, 07:05

Rod wrote:Great project - how long is very long?

Rod


Unknown ! I'm retired and refuse to work to deadlines. I'll do what I feel like doing when I feel like doing it so the time scale is unpredictable ! It wont be less than 2 yrs that's for sure.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Rob » 02 Jul 2015, 07:14

A very commendable philosophy if I may say :-)
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby chataigner » 02 Jul 2015, 16:25

Here's a few pictures :

Image
It's the scruffy one on the right.

This is the back view, seen from above our courtyard. As you can see, the land rises sharply, our courtyard is 4m lower than the garden of the house to restore. You can see how it overlooks us and why I was so keen to get hold of it before someone else did.
Image

This is what you see from our courtyard
Image

Here is the electrical installation
Image

...and the kitchen
Image

...and the bathroom
Image

...and the roof
Image

Quite small, and very scruffy, but just integrating the part of the garden that overlooks our courtyard with our existing garden (which is behind me in the second photo) will add more than the purchase price to the value of our main property.
Last edited by chataigner on 06 Jul 2015, 15:34, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby TrimTheKing » 02 Jul 2015, 16:47

Very nice, and great plan.

A thought, can you, or are you thinking of, excavating the bit next to your courtyard to double the size of that?

Also how do you plan to stop being overlooked from the end of what will be the new garden of the rental place? Build a wall up 6' or so?

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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby the bear » 02 Jul 2015, 17:09

I visit friends just outside Excideuil every year, great part of the world. The roof on your new house looks positively pristine compared to theirs.

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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby chataigner » 02 Jul 2015, 17:27

TrimTheKing wrote:Very nice, and great plan.

A thought, can you, or are you thinking of, excavating the bit next to your courtyard to double the size of that?

Also how do you plan to stop being overlooked from the end of what will be the new garden of the rental place? Build a wall up 6' or so?

Cheers
Mark


Too much to remove for the courtyard, also we have over 1/2 acre of garden already, so no great need.
Re view - Exactly that !
Last edited by chataigner on 02 Jul 2015, 17:28, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby TrimTheKing » 02 Jul 2015, 17:28

chataigner wrote:Exactly that !


Sweet! A whole lot of digger fun! :D

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EDIT : Ah, just re-read it, so no digging out. We need to see a pic from the other direction looking back at the house, just for context you understand… ;)
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby kirkpoore1 » 02 Jul 2015, 18:10

That's a hobby that will suck up all your copious spare time.:)

So when you have a retrofit on an old house with presumably solid walls like this, how do you run the electric? Wires inside molding or baseboards? Do you have any other ceiling fixtures beyond the one in the kitchen?

BTW, that bathroom is pretty scary.

Good luck, now you're a slumlord.:) I hope you know where to start--roof, maybe?

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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Rob » 02 Jul 2015, 19:52

I rent my deceased Mother's house in Wokingham and Dad put in an avocado bathroom suite in an extension in the 70's. Until I saw the pink job in your photos, I thought that was the most hideous bathroom I'd ever seen. :shock:
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Wizard9999 » 02 Jul 2015, 20:00

We viewed a house once with a black bathroom suite with every item (including the loo) shaped like shells. Hope I'll never see another one.

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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby chataigner » 03 Jul 2015, 08:25

kirkpoore1 wrote:That's a hobby that will suck up all your copious spare time.:)

So when you have a retrofit on an old house with presumably solid walls like this, how do you run the electric? Wires inside molding or baseboards? Do you have any other ceiling fixtures beyond the one in the kitchen?

BTW, that bathroom is pretty scary.

Good luck, now you're a slumlord.:) I hope you know where to start--roof, maybe?

Kirk


Insulation is essential in this climate - damn cold in winter, sometimes down to -15°C - so the inside will be dry lined : galvanised steel frame supporting 100mm of rockwool and then plasterboard. This also creates a space for all the pipes and wires.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Rob » 03 Jul 2015, 08:48

I would counter with the suggestion of a ceremonial "flame throwing" of that pink loo seat :eusa-dance:
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby chataigner » 03 Jul 2015, 09:26

Here is a plan that makes positions clearer

Image

and here are the existing house and barn for ref :

Image

Image
Last edited by chataigner on 06 Jul 2015, 15:35, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: A VERY long term project

Postby Andyp » 03 Jul 2015, 09:39

That layout seems very typical of french rural town planning and development. Are the two building in the new property, one onto the street and one in the garden covered by the tree in the 2nd image?
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