A 3D image of a house superimposed on a green field, with a line of small trees to the right

Here it is.

Up until now we’ve been using this blog as a “bucket” – to capture information, share it between us, and enable us to find it quickly when we need it. Things have been quietly moving on behind the scenes, so I think we’re at the point where we finally have something to blog about. Let’s begin!

We started this as the planning stage. When we found the land and discussed the purchase with the owner, the CU had six months left to run. We wanted to put a clause suspensive in the compromis de vente to say that the sale would be null and void in the event that we weren’t able to get planning permission. The owner checked with the notaire, who suggested we apply for planning permission in advance of progressing the purchase, so that’s what we did.

Now, almost a year on, we’re almost at the signing – and paying stage. Planning permission was obtained in February and (due to unforeseen Brexit-related events causing a two-month delay in our plans) the compromis was finally signed in June.

This means we’re in the last stages and we should at last be able to use the land, to progress our build.

There are two things going on. First, the sale is going through the usual administrative process, which means consultation with SAFER for the agricultural portion. Second, the etude du sol will be conducted in July and the results hopefully sent in August. This means we can plan (and cost) our foundation. We have a budget of 10,000 euros for this. Will it be enough!? We know that the land is clay and our DIY evaluation (involving a jam jar and some water) suggests it’s up to 90% clay, which is great news if we decide to go ahead with a “traditional” mud render.

And that’s the biggest decision we’re in the midst of. The big question that hovers over us now, is to GREB or not to GREB? More on that soon.