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Everything posted by Dennisj

  1. Hello and Thank you, the Mairie next stop.
  2. Thank you Danny and ericd, our diificulty is that we are and have always been UK residents, we used to visit twice a year to carry out restoration work, those years soon flew by, now that we have reached our mid 70' can no longer keep it up and have sold the property. We always looked forward to our trips and our time in France. I wonder if the Mairie is able to do something retrospectively? Regards
  3. Hello and help please, I have owned a property in France which was bought to renovate, it has never been occupied in some 15 years. However I have been paying the habitation tax throughout this period, the first payment was taken from my French bank account without my knowledge or permission. Some years ago I found out that the tax was not payable and I wrote to the tax office informing them and asking for the money to be refunded, they simply send reminders but have not raided my bank account again. I have explicitedly asked as to the formal process for recovering this money, I do not get a reply. Can anybody advise as to how I go about recovering the money which must be in excess of 1500 Euros. regards, Dennis
  4. Thank you Quillan,

    The web sites are in French and although one has an english translation page it does not seem to be in english.

    I will contact both and maybe with my very limited French and even a smaller amount of english from them it might be enough.

  5. Hello Idun

    It would seem to be a good sign, if he had followed up with a quote. He might be busy but looking at the calendar he may only work when there are only four letters in the month.

    If he can not provide a price how can I place an order with him.

  6. Just a brief update,

    Had a brit plumber look at the works in May, came recommended by the electrician we used, so far he (the electrician) is the only trade person we would use again. Well the plumber came looked at the work took away a set of architect drawings to give him dimensions, said he could not do the work until August as he was busy but he lives very close so the job would be perfect for him.

    Have not heard a thing since and it is 2 weeks away from August.

    Why is it so difficult?


  7. Hi Sid,

    When buying the property we were aware that there was an extensive English community earning a living in the various trades so did not see any problem getting the work done. We used a French Architect and a nice efficient chap he was. Have not used a plumber at all, yet, the Fosse was installed by a specialist and has been signed off, complied with the requirements but a poor job.

    The floor tiles, plastering and other works I described were carried out by builders, two different ones.

    It is time to put in a bathroom hence my search for a plumber.


  8. Does anyone know of a good reliable English speaking plumber in the Ruffec/16 area. French might be good as I have not been very lucky with English tradesmen so far.

    First one put in a Fosse and barely managed to put the drain pipe from the house to it under the surface, it is not deep enough to grass over, this it would seem saved him digging the hole for the tank so deep.

    Second one did some plastering, when he presented the bill he said it took longer than he thought so charged more than he said it would cost but I paid as a show of goodwill. Needed some more plastering later on, same chap sent me a bill which I paid, then when I got over to France found he had not done the work and had left the area never to be seen again.

    Third one did some very poor floor tiling (took him over a year to turn up) but as I was becoming jaundiced I paid for materials up front and did not settle the labour cost until I went back and checked. Even then I wish I had not used him.

    The electrican was not so bad but was not 100%.

    Problem is I do not speak French and still in the UK so perhaps I am fair game.

    Looking forward to hearing there are some good dependable plumbers in the area.

  9. We are up to the plumbing stage of our renovation and would appreciate some basic information on pipe sizes:

    Our incoming supply is in lead and looks to be about 15mm, we will run from here to the new Chauffe - Eau, should this be in 15mm or bigger? From there the hot and cold pipes will be routed through one bathroom with hand basin, wc, shower and bath, then branch off to another bathroom, ditto outlets and to the kitchen which will have the sink, dishwasher and washing machine.

    What size pipe should be used through the 1st bathroom bearing in mind this will be supplying the whole house, should we continue in the same size to the other bathroom and the kitchen or is it possible to reduce in size. Also from this "supply" what size pipe to tee off  to the individual :

     wc, hand basin, bath, shower, kitchen sink, dishwasher and washing machine?  

    All input greatly appreciated.

  10. In this case the Artisan did not write the final devis in that I amended it. The only signed copy would contain my amendment, how would I know he had agreed with my amendment if it did not have his signature and how could I enforce it if he did not show explicit agreement, I.E, his signature?


  11. Many thanks all.

    I ended up doing the translation and added complete to my satisfaction,  (previously told him I will not be back in France until May  and that he can do the work as and when he wishes, not finishing until the day we get there if it suites him) I mailed it back asking him to sign also. Have not heard from him since.......his silence says a lot.

    So again thank you.

    I am in area 16 not far from Champagne Mouton if there are any local competant carpenters reading this.



  12. Advice please,

    I have received an estimate from an English French registered builder, he has sent it by e-mail in english and asks that I translate it into French, sign it and return it by e-mail.

    I believe I read somewhere that a: only original signed documents are the legal format and that b: the devis should be written in French and signed by both parties. In this instance the French version would be signed by only me!

    Is what the builder suggesting the legaly accepted format? Should add that I am still living in the UK and have had previous experience of an english builder verbally quoting for works, then mailing to say it was complete and would i send payment. on that occassion I sent the money and the work had not been done, and never was.

    Gratefull for all advice, many thanks. 

  13. Cheaper and usually a better choice..........where?

  14. Hi,

    Can anyone recommend a supplier of floor tiles in area 16, Ruffec is the nearest town but the range in the local brico depot etc is not very large. Alternatively is it cheaper to purchase them in the uk, I can get hold of a van so transport is not a problem.

    Many thanks.

  15. Hi,

    We are not attempting to defraud, if he sold low to pay less tax now then we would pay it instead when we eventually sell, as we will one day and definitely before the 15 years are up.


  16. Hi Phylis

    Have to wonder what the situation would be in the "lost it in a game of cards" scenario!

    Re the termites survey, I live in Devon and another case of termites has just been discovered here so I suppose you never know.



  17. Hi Phylis,

    Thank you for the reply it helps a lot, did not consider we would have to have the property valued, imagined we would just agree a figure and that was that.

    There is no problem with the friendship, it is just that one wants to free some money to help his children out.


  18. Myself and two colleagues bought a house in France some 7 years ago, one of  them wants to sell his share which we are willing to purchase.

    There are 2 points: Would the sale of his share be liable to capital gains tax, also, would the sale be treated as new ownership with regards to starting the ownership back to day 1 losing the tax benefit (reduction in rate payable after 5 years and subsequent 10%  reduction per year) when the remaining co owners come to sell.


  19. Hi  all,

    Does any body know of a reliable plasterer in the Champagne Mouton / Ruffec / Confolens area, have been using an English  chap resident in France for a number of years. However he has taken some 18 months to plaster the first floor and has ceased to reply to my enquiries re when is he going to do the ground floor.

    Patience is running out!



  20. Many thanks all,

    You have provided a base to start from so lets see how I get on.



  21.     The adjoining property is for sale together with some land which adjoins mine, I would like to make an offer for a few hectares of the land but do not know what would be a reasonable price. I am in the charente, Ruffec area. The land is used for grazing and is slightly sloping, any help would be appreciated.


  22.     Thanks all, the only doubt is that as I remember varnish was with a high gloss as in yacht varnish, I would prefer something less shiny, I suppose if i was to liken it to paint then I would be looking for a satin finish!

    Many thanks,


  23. I am in the process of converting part of an old attic space and will be creating a bathroom, the existing floor is of narrow hardwood parquet, wasted in the attic and too good to cover up now.

    Does anybody know if there is a treatment that can be given to the wood to enable it to be visible and yet functional/water stain free in a bathroom environment.

    Fingers crossed,


  24. Does anyone know of a supplier of a ballon rechauffage mixte in area 16. I have been searching from the uk for a while with no success and as will be back in France for the "next stage" soon I need to order in advance.

    Regards and thanks, dennisj

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