We have been in business for sixteen years and without a great deal of effort from ourselves we have consistently earned enough to meet all of our business and personal expenditure, together with a good profit. All figures will be available to interested parties.
It should be noted that we are now retired and only operate La Balme on a part-time basis (July & August).
Our principal agent has been Wyndham vacation rentals (the Worlds largest self catering agent) who have a massive advertising budget, excellent web sites and brochures. Wyndham bought a company called Novasol to further access the European market.
Novasol find the customers, arrange the booking, take the money and pay directly into your bank. Naturally they take a percentage, but we feel it is worth it for the ‘stress-free’ service. -details are advertised in 16 languages. Several agencies can be used simultaneously to maximise bookings.
We make no effort to find winter or ‘out of season’ lets as we prefer to have the property to ourselves, but undoubtedly the income could be extended with a little effort.
La Balme is a stand-alone gite business – it is not suitable as a smallholding, although it could support a couple of ponies. We are situated in a ‘green belt’ so further expansion is limited – however we have made application to extend our house by a further 30 square metres.
We have a complete record of all outgoings and income since we bought La Balme and can provide an income/expenditure spreadsheet for the last trading year.
Gite owners are allowed to earn a little over 30,000€ free of tax, they do not have to supply annual accounts to the government and the completion of the tax return is relatively straightforward.
Most of the garden equipment, furnishings, white goods and linen are available with the business.