We signed the Compromis de Vente on Sunday 9th April, and guided through the process by Jenny (our English speaking agent), Keith at ALR and the specialist English solicitors he recommended the process went fairly smoothly, thanks to Martin who, as he works from home was able to chase progress and deal with all of the bureaucracy – the French do love their paperwork! We’d really recommend using English solicitors, though not necessary in the eyes of the French they were invaluable to us, and advised us on the French inheritance laws – crucial when I have children from a previous marriage!
We were advised at the initial meeting that all would be completed by the 30th June at the latest and luckily no serious problems were encountered and Jenny contacted us on the 18th May to suggest a completion of the 29th May! Fantastic but too soon for us, unlike Martin I have a real job (private joke) and with colleagues away that week no chance, that and the fact the flight prices were astronomic, blasted school holidays! The 15th June was agreed and an appointment made with the Notaire in Narbonne.
No problems with the flights this time thank goodness, and we got the early flight to Carcassonne loaded down with our maximum baggage allowance. Once in France and with the help of tomtom we found our way to Carrefour to make a start on the shopping! There we were, in Narbonne, car packed to the gunnels, hoping that there would be no last minute hitch. We parked up nearby the Notaires office, walked alongside the river and meandered through a wonderful local market before stopping and chilling out at a local café, sitting in the sunshine just watching the world go by – does the world get any better than this? Made a mental note to revisit Narbonne as soon as we are able to spend some time looking around properly.
After a meeting with the local Notaire – who appeared to speak even less English than we do French, (translator in attendance), we were given the keys to our little home. It was an hours drive through the beautiful French countryside and up to the foothills of the mountains. Everything was just as we remembered, it had been a long day but excitement and adrenaline kept us going. The house was sold partly furnished but ahead lay a very busy week of shopping and setting up our new home. But that’s another story…