EUROPE’S FIRST ECOLOGICAL OFF-GRID TINY HOUSE VILLAGE
Affordable, luxury ‘tiny house’ off-grid living
Chateau de Cautine, St Privat 19220, Correze, France
Outline permission is in place for an eco hamlet to be created, on this fully restored, 17th century chateau estate in rural France. The property lies in the heart of 12 hectares/30 acres of fields, parkland and forest in the midst of quiet, deep-green nature, surrounded by hills & mountains, forests & lakes in the eastern Dordogne, one of most unspoilt regions of France.
The concept is to offer house plots for long term rental providing an unusual and affordable opportunity: to LIVE off-grid in a tiny house which you can build yourself, with acres of land to roam around in; a multi-functional communal space, laundry, swimming pool, gardens for food growing, discounted rooms to rent in the chateau, and nearby, a huge bathing & boating lake. In the future, there will be optional extra ‘artisan’ workshop spaces and a cafe.
An ideal life and business combined
We are inviting a few people to join this project as co-owners. Each co-owner will have their own plot to build their house and will own a share of the whole property and business. The property will be transferred to a simple shareholding company and shares issued.
Becoming a co-owner of Eco Chateau will give you a quarter share of the property and business. The concept is both a ‘utopian dream’ and very practical and will provide a steady income for co-owners into the future. It has been well researched and prepared and the market demand is now increasing rapidly due to the world crisis.
Eco Chateau will offer affordable rental plots in a beautiful setting with communal areas, facilities and gardens. Plots will be rented on annual renewable leases at prices comparable to other standard, non ecological sites. This will be a springboard for those wishing to build and live in their own eco home, live close to nature and grow their own food, as well as being part of a community or village. The tiny house designs we have created are very affordable and the rental arrangements allow people to come without making the large commitment of purchasing. The idea is that after this first step of renting here, those who wish to can purchase a plot of land nearby, move their house or sell it, and expand our community, with the chateau remaining as a sort of village ‘hub’. It will be a springboard into a new way of life and help people transition.
There will be 13 plots available to rent, suitable for tiny houses.
Here are the steps:
Complete freedom will be the foundation of the village, meaning also that ‘my freedom ends where yours begins’. The basis of our law will be Common Law: i.e. Do No Harm. Certain environmental and social codes will be agreed by all who live here. All communal activities and participation will be on the basis of voluntarism.
Current facilities include…
The chateau was bought by the current owners in 2004 for €795,000 and over €300,000 has been invested in its refurbishment. Current fixed overheads and running costs average at €12k per year.
Outline permission and changes to the land category to allow the village to be built took 5 years to achieve. Detailed permission will be submitted once the co-owners are in place. This is for the purpose of demonstrating our house design and road access, water, electric provision etc. The authorities can ask us to change some details but not refuse us.
House Construction: Granite (chateau), wood (eco cabins)
Roof Construction: Stone slates (chateau), grass/vegetative (eco-cabins)
House-insulation: None at the moment (chateau); pure wool (eco-cabins)
Roof-insulation: None at the moment (chateau); to be confirmed for eco-cabins
– the French government is offering complete insulation of roof, cellars, windows and doors for €1 at the moment
Window-glazing: Double glazed & single glazed (chateau)
Window-shutters: Yes (chateau)
Heating-house: The chateau has oil heating at the moment but plans are to transform this as part of the project work – the French government is offering to install heat source pumps for €1 at the moment; The eco-cabins will have solar powered underfloor heating.
Heating-water: The chateau has oil heating at the moment but plans are to transform this as part of the project work – the French government is offering to install heat source pumps for €1 at the moment; The eco-cabins will have solar hot water.
Cooking method: Gas in the chateau at the moment; The eco-cabins will have wood burner cookers for winter and small gas ones for summer.
Electricity: Mains in the chateau at the moment. The eco-cabins can be off-grid with solar, 12-V system and batteries.
Water: There are two wells on the property and a lot of spring water. We plan to use these sources for water both in the chateau and the eco-cabins. Currently, the chateau is plumbed into the well water but not using it as the wells need to be cleaned and tested before we move over to them.
The Eco Houses
Two designs have been created for tiny houses (Jade or Carnelian) or alternatively, a two storey family home, Amethyste. (see links below for further details of the houses).
I have projected 13 plots for rental of between 12 to 50m2 (Carnelian or Jade house); later on, two communal ‘Amethyste’ houses for studios near the chateau could be built and rented out.
The plan for the house building would be on a ‘self-build’ basis with the support of a small group of carpenters that we can find here in the local area, if needed. The building of your houses will be the responsibility of each family/person. Peter Blok, the architect, will be able to guide you and your team to complete your house. Peter has contacts with local builders and carpenters. The price guides for materials, fixtures and labour are in the links below. The basic cost is for the materials. The installations cost can vary according to each person’s budget and second hand installations can be used to reduce the cost considerably.
House prices & details:
65.000 turn key
35.000 turn key
Plot rentals – Income is based on renting 13 plots each on an annual contract of €450 per month, excluding cost of utilities.
Chateau suite and room rentals – Income is based on renting 3 family suites and one double room in the chateau year round with communal kitchen, dining and living areas. There are 9 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms in the chateau sleeping up to 20 people. The co-owners can develop workshops and learning retreats and can base the chateau income on year round accommodation for this purpose, thus considerably raising the income.
Shares: Each shareholders contribution will be represented as a loan and paid back over 17 to 18 years providing an ongoing income.
Please contact the owner to discuss your interest and to receive the projection for the income and expenditure of the business over the next 17 years with a return on investment for 4 shareholders (2 existing owners plus 2 new co-owners).
Other: please see links below:
Aerial video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yBwhbPdUxNE
Eco Chateau Village promotion: https://youtu.be/511NyIYV75U
Eco Chateau Tiny House Designs: https://youtu.be/AMTf4L_oVyE
Eco Chateau rental promotion: https://youtu.be/yWNT0BCr4pY
Interview with architect Peter Blok Part 1: https://youtu.be/_Btfm4eU4gM
And our website: http://www.eco-chateau.com