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Planning Ahead, a Move to France Won't Happen Overnight

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 7 Jan 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Moving To France Planing Plan Ahead

Planning ahead is key to making your move to France go smoothly.

There are a number of organisations, websites and guides set up to help make your move easier, so by getting involved and doing your research, you will be able to avoid many of the pitfalls that new expats face.

Money

Unless you are planning to retire to France and have a good pension, you will need to earn money. The internet and mobile communication has meant that many people now can enjoy the very real possibility of working from France for established UK clients. It is popular for expats to set up a business in France too, with gites and restaurants being the most popular choices.

Doing your homework means that you will be able to research your chosen area well before you have made the leap to move to France. Don’t forget that when you arrive you will have a long list of things to do that are nothing to do with work or earning money – finding a doctor and dentist or a good builders merchant. If you are planning to continue an existing business in France, you can meet with clients who it may make a difference to and have plenty of time to get people used to the idea. If you are going to be setting up a new business, you will have time to get a website and marketing literature, saving you valuable time once you arrive.

Family

If you are planning to move to France alone or with a partner, as long as you both share the same dream of moving to France, it may not be a contentious issue, but if you have teenage children, for example, you may need to spend more time discussing the move. Younger children may be concerned about the unknown – will they make friends, what will the school dinners be like and can they still go to dance or judo classes. Older children will have their own concerns and you will need to make sure they feel heard. By not springing the move on them, but allowing plenty of time to understand the benefits of the move, older children will feel as though they have been taken into consideration. This is very important in the integration of your child in their new life in France, as their attitude and confidence will be more conducive to a happy transition.

France

You need to understand as much as you can about France and the French way of life before you commit to moving. It is not the same as watching a ‘Life in the Sun’ type programme and dreaming of a new adventure. There are many benefits to a life in France, including improved weather, a less commercial culture and an appreciation of family and friends, but it is not all perfect. In order for your move to be a success, you need to research the good parts and the bad parts, or you will get a nasty shock when you arrive. By taking plenty of time to plan which region you want to move to, what type of house suits your family and lifestyle and how your quality of life will change, you can go into the adventure with open eyes.

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Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Exmoorgirl - Your Question:
Hi there, I am a 42 year old single mother of two children aged 6 and 9. I am also a trained primary school teacher with 20 years experience. I hope to move my family to France within the next year or so and start a new life. I have a small mortgage on my house here so could be mortgage free in France. I would like to buy a campsite/ B&B/ gite business to run there while teaching English on the side. I am also training as a masssge and holistic treatment therapist and could run workshops/ holidays over there for british people. Any advice? Am I mad to want to do this? My command of French is reasonable and I am going to do an intensive course in the UK before leaving. I am looking at the Limousin, region as it's cheaper but am also considering the Pyrenees and Bezier region too. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Please!

Our Response:
Sounds like an exciting plan! We can't give specific advice in terms of individuals/places to locate etc, but we hope the information on our website helps you. There are also lots of ex-pat forums to be found around the Internet; these are well worth visiting and posting on.
NewLifeInFrance - 10-Jan-18 @ 9:49 AM
Hi there, I am a 42 year old single mother of two children aged 6 and 9. I am also a trained primary school teacher with 20 years experience. I hope to move my family to France within the next year or so and start a new life. I have a small mortgage on my house here so could be mortgage free in France. I would like to buy a campsite/ B&B/ gite business to run there while teaching English on the side. I am also training as a masssge and holistic treatment therapist and could run workshops/ holidays over there for british people. Any advice? Am I mad to want to do this? My command of French is reasonable and I am going to do an intensive course in the UK before leaving. I am looking at the Limousin, region as it's cheaper but am also considering the Pyrenees and Bezier region too. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Please!
Exmoorgirl - 7-Jan-18 @ 8:12 AM
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