As the renovations to our home in Jarnac will drag on for some time yet, we needed to be closer to the action and our rental was up April 1st anyway, which gave us an option to find another furnished rental prior to us going to Austria. Our home won't be done before mid summer.
We searched closer to Jarnac this time and near Chateaueuf sur Charente we saw an ad for a barn conversion. Having toyed with that idea ourselves prior our committing to a townhouse, this would give us an opportunity to check out barn living and if we made the right choice with a town property versus country living. the closest grocery store is 12km from the barn...in town we got a 200m walk.
The advantages really are that you get a shell with four walls and you can go at it with any design or style you desire. A blank canvas sort of. The verdict will come in end of April, this property however is very very well done. The owners did a lot of work themselves, with great results.
A giant living area with a galley style kitchen with all the appliances one needs for long term rentals, big fridge freezer, washing machine, a dishwasher(!) plenty cupboards, etc.
To one side they created a mezzanine with the master bedroom and bath upstairs, with two more bedrooms and a bath downstairs.
The former barn door has been replaced with a giant bay window facing east, for amazing sunrises.
The yard does not seem to end, with only a small hedge separating it from the endless vines, where Cognac farmers grow their grapes. A very old church is the only visible neighbor, making it a perfect spot for holidays or longer term rentals.
I think the downside may be that if it does get cold in the winter (and it does...), the heating of such a large structure may be a challenge unless you install in floor heating.
The wood burning fireplace seems to be high efficient, but might need help from additional sources.
In terms of renting a place such as this, we were pleasantly surprised that the off season rates were very reasonable. Saves some bucks for all those renos we need to do in Jarnac.
Here is a link to their contact information, just in case that you would like to visit the area:
FROM THE OTHER SIDE WITH BIG WINDOWS
VERY PRIVATE SETTING
WITH GREAT VIEWS OVER THE VINES
LOADS OF PARKING
VIEW FROM THE MEZZANINE
WITH ALL THE AMENITIES ONE NEEDS
VERY BRIGHT WITH A GIANT WINDOW