This is an updated post that I first wrote in May 2016. I have an app that sends me reminders of photos that I took on today’s date but in previous years. In this case, it was a post I wrote whilst we were spending a month in Castelnaudary, looking for a house to purchase.

For those of you are that are more recent readers, I was lucky enough (although lucky is not the most appropriate word in this context) to receive an inheritance which enabled me to fulfil a lifetime dream to purchase a house in France.

These ( rather poor) photos are of the exterior and interior of the estate agent ( or realtor) we used in France. We had a personal recommendation for this agency and I think we were very fortunate to meet someone who was the opposite of the perception of a stereotypical estate agent. Apologies to any estate agents who might be reading this!

The person in question was funny, charming and had gone out of her way to follow our brief. The cynical, amongst you, are probably thinking – that’s her job – and yes, of course it is! Nevertheless, we were delighted with the seven houses she showed us.

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This house looked wonderful from the road. This photo is the front garden but there was no back garden. Unfortunately, the interior didn’t quite meet our needs but the main deciding factor was that it was in the middle of nowhere. This might be perfection for some people but I was adamant that I wanted to be part of a French community, not isolated. 

The house below was in a village and had lots of land and potential but we would have had to drive everywhere. It was important that we could walk or cycle into the nearest town, Castelnaudary.

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This house was on the outskirts of Castelnaudary, had a pool and the back garden opened on to the Canal du Midi. Both the garden and the house were bigger than we really wanted.

There were other houses that we viewed but I don’t have any photos of them. At least three of them were in the town centre but didn’t have much of a garden.

All though the house viewing process, I was fascinated by the creative vocabulary used to describe aspects of the properties: une atmosphère cosy, style loft industriel, fosse septique, en cathédrale.

And what is it about mezzanines, in France? I have never come across so many houses with a mezzanine level, no matter the age or style of the house. And yes, we have ended up with a mezzanine!

Floor plans – what floor plans?? I’m used to house details with floor plans included.

As with any property purchase, it was a mix of excitement and extreme stress!

If you’ve been following the blog for some time, you will know which house we bought!

I do hope you’ve enjoyed this nostalgic look at buying our house in France.