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French actress Deneuve to sell €4m château

Famed French actress Catherine Deneuve has reportedly put her holiday home up for sale. The Château de Primard, located 75 km from Paris, will go on the market for a cool €4 million.

French actress Deneuve to sell €4m château
Catherine Deneuve's Château de Primard, which she is selling for €4 million. Photo: Sotheby's

The doyenne of French cinema Catherine Deneuve, aged 70, is selling off her holiday home, the 18th century Château de Primard.

The luxury property, located in Guainville, in the Eure-et-Loire department to the west of Paris, has been put on the market for €3.9 million according to reports in the French press.

(Catherine Deneuve has put her "holiday home" up for sale at €4 million)

The 1,200-square-metre château comes complete with a swimming pool, a caretaker’s house and “many additions” and stretches along the left bank of the Eure River, according to the advert in luxury estate agents Sotheby’s.

The main house includes eight bedrooms, a 50-square-metre kitchen and a sauna suite of 70 square metres.

It also includes grounds designed by the famous Belgian landscape gardener Jacques Wirtz, who was behind the Jardin du Carrousel in the Tuileries and the Elysée Palace gardens. 

The property has been put up for sale with a number of agencies both in France and abroad.

(It is not clear whether these farm animals are included in the price)  

Deneuve also owns an apartment in the sixth arrondissement in Paris but recently spoke of her need to get out into the countryside to relax.

The actress, famed for playing the roles of aloof, mysterious beauties in French films, was recently involved in a war of words with fellow French actress Sophie Marceau over President François Hollande’s affair with Julie Gayet.

After Marceau labelled Hollande “a jerk” and “a coward”, Deneuve hit back saying Marceau was “very rude”.

“I am astonished at the casual way in which people, including journalists, speak about the President of the Republic.”

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PROPERTY

Tenants in France: How to make your home more energy efficient

Insulation, ventilation, heating - given the cost-of-living crisis that’s affecting France as much as many other countries, it’s understandable that there is a lot of talk right now about improving energy efficiency in homes.

Tenants in France: How to make your home more energy efficient

In France many people rent and although you would hope that your landlord would do improvements like this, if they are unable or unwilling than you have the right to do these works yourself.

It means the work is at your own expense, but if you’re a long-term tenant you may make the money back in savings on your energy bills.

Here’s how to go about it:

Inform your landlord

The first thing to do is inform your landlord you intend to carry out the work, at your expense. Do this by registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt. 

The letter must describe the transformations envisaged, the conditions under which these works will be carried out, and the name of the company undertaking the work.

If you have not received a written response in two months, you can assume you have the tacit agreement of your landlord to carry out the work.

Work you can carry out

A decree published in France’s Journal Officiel on July 21st defines the list of works a tenant can carry out at their own expense on the property they rent.

  • insulation of lower floors;
  • Attic and upper floor insulation;
  • replacement of exterior joinery;
  • solar protection of glazed or opaque walls;
  • installation or replacement of ventilation systems;
  • installation or replacement of heating and domestic hot water production systems and associated interfaces.

The work cannot affect communal areas of a shared property, and must “respect the expected energy performance”. 

Work cannot affect the building structure, its external appearance, require a permit, or change the purpose of the building.

What happens afterwards

Within two months after the completion of the work, the tenant must inform the landlord that the work has been carried out by the chosen company and that it corresponds to what was announced in the pre-work letter.

Other work tenants can undertake on a property they rent

In 1989, a law was passed that allowed tenants to undertake certain work on a property – painting and decorating, adding or changing floor covering – without the permission of the landlord and at their own expense.

Any other works require the written agreement of the landlord – otherwise the tenant may be obliged to return the property to its original condition. 

The landlord can also keep the benefit of the work done without the tenant being able to claim compensation for the costs incurred.

Landlord’s responsibilities

Landlords must provide decent housing, which implies, in particular, heating in good working order, and compliance with a minimum energy performance criterion. Under current rules, doors, windows and walls must be airtight. 

A tenant can only require work from his landlord on these elements, if they are deficient.

From January 1st, 2023, properties advertised for rent in France must have a Diagnostic de performance énergétique rating of G or better.

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