New lottery funding set to boost interest in renovating French ruins

New lottery funding set to boost interest in renovating French ruins

• Grants for renovation work to increase, thanks to new ‘Heritage Lotto’
• Owners can apply directly to Fondation du Patrmoine to fund their repairs
• 65% of British buyers are open to doing work beyond simple redecorating (FrenchEntrée)

A new lottery is set to breathe new life into a French funding programme that supports owners to renovate historic French properties. Agreed only last month, the ‘Heritage Lotto’ will fund grants to those helping to preserve France’s architectural heritage.

Renovating a historic property takes passion, commitment and plenty of cash. For many, to do so is a dream that they can’t quite afford. Now, the boost in funding for the Fondation du Patrmoine, means that those seeking to renovate some of France’s most stunning properties can apply for financial help to do so.

“Renovating can be incredibly rewarding, but it’s also seriously hard work and the financial commitment can put some buyers off the idea. Now, the additional Heritage Lotto funding means that more support is available for those who dream of doing up a French ruin. It’s a dream come true for some buyers, while also supporting the preservation of France’s historic architecture – everyone wins.”

Fleur Buckley, Property Services Manager, FrenchEntrée

Premium French property agents FrenchEntrée offer a range of superior properties, including those that need restoration work. The cost of such works ranges from €1,000 to €1,500 per square metre, depending on the severity of the dilapidation.

The reward for those undertaking the renovations is that doing so can work out to be far more cost effective than purchasing a comparable property in a good state of repair. They can end up with a stunning home that might otherwise have been unaffordable, as well as with the satisfaction of having brought back to life a property that might otherwise have slowly crumbled away to nothing, lost forever to the confines of history.

Interestingly, of FrenchEntrée’s clients, it is British buyers who are by far the keenest to undertake renovation works to a property with 65% open to doing work beyond simple redecorating such as putting in a new kitchen or bathroom. For those looking for additional accommodation with a property, such as a gîte, the majority (55%) are willing to do restoration or conversion work whilst 30% of Brits enquiring about châteaux not shy about taking on a ‘labour of love’.

Applying for funding from the Fondation du Patrmoine is surprisingly simple. Property owners apply directly to the foundation with details of the property and the work that needs to be carried out in order to restore it. The foundation then approves or rejects the request based on its eligibility criteria. Separate funding streams are available for listed and non-listed buildings.

“The new lottery funding is set to drive up interest in restoring France’s historic ruins, building a national campaign to preserve France’s grand architectural past. As a result, we’re expecting a significant rise in interest in French ruins and homes in need of restoration over the coming months, as buyers seek to take advantage of the available funding.”

Fleur Buckley, Property Services Manager, FrenchEntrée

Properties in need of renovation on the market

35 km from Rouen and 145 km from Paris stands this ruined Normandy chateau. On the market for €270,000, the property dates back to the Middle Ages. Two towers and the vaulted cellars date back to the 15th century, while modernization work undertaken in 1786 has contributed to the current aspect. The sellers have begun renovating, ready for the new owners to really get to work. The property is set in around 15 acres of grounds, including a pond surrounded by willows and a charming fruit orchard.

Also in Normandy, this outstanding listed manor house is available for €470,046. The stunning building, which dates back to the 14th and 17th centuries, is set in peaceful countryside, 6 km from the nearest town. The unique building includes domed and pinnacled roofs with elegant finials, atop rounded towers. Water-filled moats still surround part of the manor. Outbuildings in the grounds include a three-bedroom dwelling house, an ancient bakery and a stone barn.

For further information, contact FrenchEntrée on +44 (0)1225 463752. You can also visit