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Steve and Lisa have been married for eight years but have only spent four years together. Now they're looking for their first new home together, but the couple are torn between Wales and France.
Steve and Lisa McFall have been married for eight years but due to Steve’s job in the RAF they have only actually spent four of those years together.
They have now decided to change their lives entirely with a major relocation which will give them a lot more quality time together. They both love the outdoor life and have always dreamt about being self-sufficient, and they believe that the time to act on this impulse is now, while they're still young and fit and able to make the good life work for them. The only problem is that they can't decide between West Wales or the Midi-Pyrenees. Where will they finally put down roots?
Home properties - West Wales
Pembrokeshire, where the couple are considering their 'home' property search, is a maritime county, bordered by the sea on three sides, by Ceredigion (Cardiganshire) to the northeast and by Carmarthenshire to the east. Visitors flock to this leading European holiday destination to enjoy the spectacular grandeur and tranquil beauty of the countryside and take in some of the 186 mile coastal cliff top path, which offers wonderful walking and glorious views, and is a paradise for bird watchers.
The region also has a farely moderate climate. It is changeable but the coastal areas of the national park are generally drier than inland. Winters are generally mild with average daily high temperatures between 8 and 10 degrees cesius. Summers are dry but on the cool side, with winds blowing off the Bristol Channel and Irish Sea keeping average highs between 15 and 17 degrees celsius from June to August. The area's natural charms are clear for all visitors to see, and will also be ideal for the McFall's plans for self sufficiency, plus Lisa has family ties with Wales, but will the lure of the French countryside be too much?
Away properties - Midi-Pyrenees
The Midi-Pyrenees with its population of approx. 140,000 is one of the least populated and most unspoiled regions of France. It has a mainly agricultural economy and infrastructure and is famed for its production of rural product such as hay, honey and cheese. Although the number of farmers in the area have declined, the McFalls will still be in good company with their self sufficient and natural lifestyle. But will the average price of property put them off? Property prices in the Midi-Pyrénées have increased by 6.5% from 2006 to 2007, compared to the average of 3.8% for the whole of France in the same period (FNAIM).
However, compared to neighbouring region Languedoc-Roussillon, average prices per square metre in Midi-Pyrénées are 17% cheaper, which could mean the couple might find what they're looking for within budget. The question is, will it stop them dreaming of Wales?
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