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Who buys these granges (barns)?


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Here's a barn, great location, good area, good altitude too, sold for a serious amount of money (50k euro).

The ad itself mentions:


La grange ne dispose pas de certificat d'urbanisme permettant de transformer le bâtiment en habitation et il est peu probable d'en obtenir un car elle se trouve dans la zone N.

So, the barn doesn't have a residential certificate and it'll likely won't be able to receive one because it's in a zone N (upon further reading this is "zone Naturelle" / agricultural area).

Why would one buy a barn like this if it seems like it is impossible to transform it into a house to live in?

Or am I missing something, is it easier to get the approvals than I think it is?

Would people actually buy these barns for agriculture?


Background on me asking this question: I would like to buy one of these remote barns and renovate it into a house to live in.

From my (maybe limited) research, transforming a barn like this into a house requires going through a lot of red-tape hoops:

  1. many of these barns are probably located in Zone N
  2. it is all up to the local prefecture on whether they will accept any application or not (you could be in limbo for years waiting to start on a project)
  3. at least one region (Haute-Pyrenees) considers these barns patrimony so the process to repurpose them is intense
    1. Also in H-P, there are various laws about buying property with > 2000 square meters (e.g. need to have contract with local shepherds for them to use your land otherwise application is not 

So, am I missing something or is the process really this complicated, but the people buying these properties are just willing to go through it?

Thank you all and thanks for reading my short-story of a question!

Edited by shtopointo
one clarifying question
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