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Author Topic: Moving to France  (Read 676 times)

Cornel Wyntog

  • Joined Jun 2020
Moving to France
« on: May 10, 2023, 11:01:42 am »

Does this site include any smallholders in Normandy? I'm thinking of moving there for land for my sheep and would like to know if there are any groups for smallholders in that region.
Thanks in advance. :fc:


  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Moving to France
« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2023, 06:41:51 pm »
Sure there used to be people in the North on this site, but they haven't posted for years. 95% of Brits left after Brexit. The first thing you need to do is be aware of the residence requirements which are somewhat  complicated (minimum income is very important) and are perhaps about to change with the new immigration legislation being drawn up at the moment for a vote in August.

Moving your sheep into the EU will be another complexity if it is actually possible now? You would need to talk to Defra. We exported our chickens back in 2012 when the UK was part of the EU and that was extremely difficult (and expensive).


  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Moving to France
« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2023, 07:34:47 am »
There is a facebook group called 'smallholders in France' which may help you?

Cornel Wyntog

  • Joined Jun 2020
Re: Moving to France
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2023, 12:27:00 pm »
Thank you. I knew it was difficult with Brexit but didn't realise it was impossible/ so complex it nearly is. I will have to do some chatting to DEFRA and see how it goes. I was wanting to retire out there so not sure if I would be allowed. Lots to investigate. Is it worth the work? Do you recommend living in France?
« Last Edit: May 14, 2023, 12:30:25 pm by Cornel Wyntog »


  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Clackmannanshire
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Re: Moving to France
« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2023, 02:49:27 pm »
Moving to France held great attractions to my partner and I, although we never got the chance to go for it.  If I were 20 years younger I;d do it.  I think you still get your pension if you do - found this -

What happens to my State Pension if I move abroad?
As long as you've paid enough National Insurance, you can claim your State Pension while living abroad. The main difference is that if the State Pension increases, you may not benefit from the extra amount if you're living in certain countries.16 Feb 2023

Perhaps you could sell your sheep here then buy fresh after you move?
Always have been, always will be, a WYSIWYG - black is black, white is white - no grey in my life! But I'm mellowing in my old age


  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Moving to France
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2023, 02:53:22 pm »
I think ignorance of the problems helped us move, because if we knew then what we know now I'm not sure that we would have bothered. Perhaps simply moved area. But now we are here it's fantastic. Wouldn't live much further North because of the weather. House with land half the UK price, so we couldn't have ever afforded this. A very rare thing even here, small house in the middle of a decent plot. Nearest neighbour 200 metres, clean air, no traffic and most importantly very little theft. But houses are a minefield because the French don't maintain them and they have problems like asbestos, termites, damp, drainage and shared driveways with tractors. This was the 52nd viewed. You can't buy a new (ish) house with land. Legislation limits the plot to 1500m2. So you are stuck with all the maintenance problems of an old property. Been in France 11 years now but bought 6 years ago- still working on it with perhaps 2 or 3 years to go. The previous Dutch and English owners did all the expensive stuff, we're just tidying up.

To be honest, retiring here is going to be a nightmare with an old property which will become a money pit. Tradesmen are very expensive and difficult to find. We have only just reached retirement age and fortunately can do just about everything ourselves. But the speed things grow with all the sun took us by surprise. We are cutting the lawns every 4 days, any more and it would be too long to cut. And then there is the language- what you lean in England isn't worth much because it's so out-of-date.

So moving pre-Brexit, with all our chickens, at our age then, it was worth the work and living in France is great. But it wouldn't suit most people.

To add, based on the last post:- yes you can get your pension paid here and in at a good exchange rate as well. BUT a single UK state pension isn't deemed sufficient income for residency and I'm not sure if two for a couple would be enough either?


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