6 Things to consider when renovating a French property

Renovating a property in France can provide an exciting challenge. However, before you undertake your project there are some key things for you to consider which will ensure the work goes smoothly and to plan.

  1. Plan your budget

Decide on a realistic budget. Bear in mind that the TVA rates for renovation costs will be lower if you use a professional artisan like Kiwi Construction – compared to doing it yourself.

  1. Utilities

Ensure that the electricity supply is adequate for the property – and if not, factor in any upgrade work that is required.  Also, check that there is a water supply from the local town/commune as well as the condition of the fosse septique sewage system.

  1. Land registry

Get hold of a copy of the ‘cadastre’ which is the land registry plan. It’s used by local authorities to calculate property taxes and is a very useful reference document.

  1. Planning permission

Popular renovation projects often include the conversion of derelict barns into gites together with extensions and swimming pools.  Even before you buy a property, check first that you can obtain planning permission. Contact us to discuss further.

  1. Roofs

The condition of the roof is critically important and can be an expensive part of any project. Look at the ridge line to ensure it is straight and that the roof timbers are sound.

  1. Use local artisans who understand the heritage

Kiwi Construction has been working in the Landes and Pays Basque for more than 25 years. We understand the need to pay careful attention to the original features of the property, providing you with sound advice and guidance on how to renovate your home in a way that is in-keeping with the local area but also meets the requirements of modern day living.


These are only a few of the things to think about before you start your renovation project. Please get in touch to discuss further your ideas – we will be pleased to help.


Kiwi Construction delivers professional expertise, exceptional customer service and quality construction to all its’ clients covering the Biarritz, the Pays Basque and Landes departments.


Contact :

Grant & Joeline Norris

+33 (o) 6 11 80 21 86