Running a French Holiday Gite in Rural Brittany

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Back home, unpacking, dealing with the post, emails and a long-term rental enquiry

Oh the joys of getting back home from holiday.

There is something to be said for going on holiday by plane, and especially by RyanAir, as it stops you taking too much stuff with you. Taking your own car on holiday seems to encourage all amount of stuff to be brought (and bought) that you'd otherwise manage to have done without!

Spent most of today unpacking the car, putting the large sack of (unused) tile adhesive back in the garage as I never quite managed to find time to do some bathroom tiling, putting away my tools in the work shed, commencing the washing mountain (despite having used the washing machine in France quite a lot we still seem to have even more to wash), and of course putting away all the holiday souvenirs we bought.

And then of course there is the mountain of post to open and emails to deal with. I took my laptop with me and used McDonald's free Wifi to enable me to read some of my emails and booking enquiries whilst away, but there's still a massive pile to do.

Had a major calamity when I turned on my home PC to find that it wouldn't boot at all. Didn't recognise the hard disk as being present and there was a worrying rattle coming from inside the cabinet. Took the side off, fiddled with the cables to check they were all seated properly, swapped the hard disk power cable over for another power cable inside the cabinet and the hard disk is now working .... but it's got me worried now so I'm currently running a full hard disk backup onto my external lacie drive so that if it's really on the way out then at least I've got a completely up to date backup.

And in amongst the emails was a booking enquiry from our advert on The inquiry was from a French gentleman looking to rent our house for 2 months in October and November whilst work is being done on his house in Josselin.

Some of these long-term rental enquiries can be scam attempts but this sounded genuine so with the help of Google translate I carefully crafted my reply email in French detailing the property particulars.

But what to charge for a monthly rental figure?

The normal weekly holiday rent for the Gite would have worked out at circa €1200 per month but I felt this'd be too high for a long term out of season rent - the Gite would be occupied for an extended period of time which is worth having and we wouldn't have the changeover costs normally incurred with multiple holiday lettings.

A bit of google searching brought me to ViteLoge a French equivalent of RightMove to find houses to rent or purchase.

3 bedroom houses and apartments seem to be rented for anywhere between €430 and €800 with most being around the €500 mark.

€500 seems just to low to me. This is only going to be a 2 month rental agreement not for 12 months, our rental prices normally include electricity, heating oil, water etc and it makes sense to do the same for a 2 month agreement so I can't make it too low as it could cost me more in heating oil alone, and I have to consider that I may incur additional cleaning costs afterwards.

So I've plumped for €750 a month and we'll see what happens.



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