Just Merveilleux?

Life at โ„– 42

Exciting!

presbyteryWe went to see this property today. It’s massive, It used to be a presbytery- but fortunately religion is dying down. Just fifty years ago there were thirty people living there. Last year the last holdout had to move into a retirement home and so the church didn’t renew the lease and now the property is up for sale by the town hall.

The interiors are grand. Great ceiling height, huge windows, beautiful staircases (2 of them). Enough room for a good number of decent sized apartments- and a superb address, right in the town centre on a wide tree lined boulevard.

I know the idea was to relax, buy rental properties that were already done and making a profit… certainly not to take on the redesign and remodel of a huge place and create 10 apartments ๐Ÿ™‚ But I’m not sure I can resist. A few days agoย Mike was fighting me on it. He thinks I’ve been stressed for a long time and I could do with a bit of a break and we don’t really need to make more money. But I put my foot down and he’s coming around.

I’m 37, I don’t want to be done. It may mean a lot of work, but it doesn’t all have to be done in a day. We can make our own schedule at leisure. Take as much time as we like. It’s not like the banks are offering great returns on savings anyway. I’d rather the money go towards property.

I’ve always liked the idea of proper-tay. On occasion when I was little and we’d drive towards one of my grandfather’s properties- he’d do this little scene and say, “Oh, look at that, isn’t it magnificent. I wonder who lives in such a spectacular place?”ย I’d laugh and laugh. Now I sometimes do the same thing to Mike. Time flies, doesn’t it?

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28 comments on “Exciting!

  1. Carl D'Agostino
    June 10, 2015

    Looks like a grand adventure.Good luck on the enterprise. Not the starship Enterprise, I mean the building enterprise.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. inspiredbythedivine1
    June 10, 2015

    Looks great.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. makagutu
    June 10, 2015

    Work is therapeutic. You can do the remodeling at your own pace. I think just sitting all day to admire the curtains and wait to make a sale would bore you close to death

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hariod Brawn
    June 10, 2015

    Does it include the three storey building just out of shot to the right?

    Like

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      June 10, 2015

      No… and how in the world do you know how tall that building is? Are you here?????

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hariod Brawn
        June 10, 2015

        No, I am here Mr. M, and I am son of Clouseau. ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

      • Mr. Merveilleux
        June 10, 2015

        Interesting. It’s numbers 11 and 13, BD Soult. The two brown doors and very light blue shutters, and the wrought iron gate to the far right. The footprint is approx 250m2, and about 60% of the attic is usable space. So ten 65m2 apartments would work, give or take. Plus private storage lockers in the basement ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hariod Brawn
        June 10, 2015

        Will the tenants be okay with all the little kiddies next door? And my goodness, what on earth will you do with all the money you make? I am so very jealous; this detective work pays next to nothing you know. ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Like

      • Mr. Merveilleux
        June 10, 2015

        PURE EVIL. What else do you know? Next you’ll tell people I once opened the gate wearing drawstring trousers!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hariod Brawn
        June 10, 2015

        Not those ghastly lilac ones again – really, have you no shame!

        Like

      • Mr. Merveilleux
        June 10, 2015

        Coincidently amusing word choice. Mike used to get at me by saying posh people (like me) said lilac as if it were two words. Lie-Leck ๐Ÿ™‚ He also makes fun of my pronunciation of Palm (Polm) and Yacht (Yot) ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hariod Brawn
        June 10, 2015

        The acid test for English posh-ness is how one best enunciates ‘flowers’ and ‘Caroline’.

        Like

      • Mr. Merveilleux
        June 10, 2015

        Not cat as ket? Or Kenya as Key-nya? ๐Ÿ™‚ Anyway, I’m neither English, nor posh! I just speak in a particular way because of a colourful combination of circumstances that related to my education ๐Ÿ˜›

        Liked by 1 person

  5. karenjane369
    June 10, 2015

    I didn’t think you could have a quiet life in France (& you are far too young to ‘retire’), & this project sounds wonderful. The outside looks lovely.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      June 10, 2015

      When we go back I’ll take pictures of the inside. It was built in the 1850’s. Classical and restrained, as you’d expect a presbytery/rectory to be. At the back there’s a small but very pretty garden. Roses, hydrangeas, two massive oaks. I think people would enjoy living there, which is a good start!

      Liked by 2 people

  6. siriusbizinus
    June 10, 2015

    Stressing over creation can be a good thing. At least with this property, you’ll be improving a place where many families will live their lives surrounded by beauty. I think that’s a wonderful thing.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. john zande
    June 10, 2015

    Do it! Too grand an opportunity to miss.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. davidprosser
    June 10, 2015

    It sounds like a fantastic proposition and I know your design skills could do the job blindfold after the interior conversion to flats. My worry is the tradesmen, whether they’ll have smoke pouring from your ears so that you do get wound up and stressed. If you can cope with that then it should be plain sailing and maybe you and Mike can take a nice break somewhere.
    Soon you’ll be blogging every day just to keep us abreast of developments with all these properties.
    Hugs

    Like

  9. Vickie Lester
    June 10, 2015

    Perfect! What a wonderful project!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. ramendik
    June 10, 2015

    Insulation and moisture might be issues in a building that old. Did you have a good, stress on good, engineer take a look at it?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      June 10, 2015

      It needs to be insulated from top to bottom! And double glazing, and new heating systems for each individual apartment. Six months to a year of work.- at least.
      Are you a ‘good’ engineer offering your absolutely free services ๐Ÿ˜€

      Like

      • ramendik
        June 10, 2015

        Nope, I’m not an engineer at all. I was really thinking of the tenants as I was a tenant in places with such issues; once I had to leave in a hurry when a cold spell struck, and it was too late, I became ill anyway.

        So I do hope your tenants, when you get them, are protected. Double glazing and insulation is good but not enough; do it wrong and it actually increases moisture, creating a danger of buildup of mold. An engineer with knowledge of these things is an absolute must, don’t just trust the tradesmen.

        Like

  11. acflory
    June 11, 2015

    Do it, do it, DO IT!

    -grin- Of course you’re not done, and property is the only sure investment apart from perhaps gold, although I’m not that convinced about gold. Plus we can follow your exploits from a distance, drooling in a dignified way as you create 3D works of art. Coz that’s what houses should be, comfortable, livable, beautiful works of art.:)

    Like

    • ramendik
      June 11, 2015

      Property is not a sure investment. as many Irish people belatedly found out in the recent years. It can very well fall in value.

      Can’t comment on the rental market in a French town I never visited, of course. The project struck me as sticking to very small apartments – I do wonder if it might be worth it to have a couple bigger ones for families with kids – but of course that depends on the market in the town and the planned policy regarding tenants.

      Like

      • acflory
        June 11, 2015

        You’re right, as the Irish experience showed, property is not safe when it’s part of a speculative market. In fact, property is not an good investment at any time if you’re likely to have to liquidate your assets in a hurry. I think Pinky and Mike are safe though. ๐Ÿ™‚

        Like

      • Mr. Merveilleux
        June 11, 2015

        You’re absolutely right, property investment can be tricky.
        Both Ireland and Spain suffered from a combined issue- as in, it wasn’t just that real-estate prices rose dramatically from the 90’s to the 2000’s, but the financial markets jumped on the bandwagon. It was like a feeding frenzy.
        15 years ago we lived in a little community in Spain where there were 200 houses, by 2005 there were thousands, including tall blocks of apartments. And people weren’t just building and buying, the market was flooded with junk property. Low quality, badly located junk. Not to mention the issue with the Ninja loans (no income/job/assets.)
        In rural France the situation is very different. Prices are low and there’s minimal fluctuation. Speculation is reserved mainly to Paris and the Cote d’Azur with some small pockets in major urban centres like Lyon or Bordeaux.

        And also yes, we’re definitely planning to diversify. Smaller apartments street side, and larger family apartments garden side. The presbytery is a very short walk from the town creche and the primary school, so it’s an ideal location for families with young children and/or parents who have jobs in the town centre.

        Like

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This entry was posted on June 10, 2015 by in Mazamet and tagged , , , .
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