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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

Does anyone know if I can be a luthier under the AE scheme or is that an excluded occupation?

Also, would a profit of £1500 be enough to survive in the cheaper central parts of France (I'm thinking Auvergne) after cotisations and tax? I'm talking about renting a 1 bed flat or house and covering basic bills and eating.

I know I have asked this kind of question before but I have not a a satisfactory answer to this simple question: is £1500 per month enough to scrape by on in the cheaper parts of France as an AE. Please don't direct me to info in French on this as my French is not yet good enough.

I mean £1500 per month profit

Thanks for any help

Matt
 

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Hello all,

Does anyone know if I can be a luthier under the AE scheme or is that an excluded occupation?

Also, would a profit of £1500 be enough to survive in the cheaper central parts of France (I'm thinking Auvergne) after cotisations and tax? I'm talking about renting a 1 bed flat or house and covering basic bills and eating.

I know I have asked this kind of question before but I have not a a satisfactory answer to this simple question: is £1500 per month enough to scrape by on in the cheaper parts of France as an AE. Please don't direct me to info in French on this as my French is not yet good enough.

I mean £1500 per month profit

Thanks for any help

Matt
Does your "£1500" include all rent, taxes (income, property, et al) or are you thinking of £1500 net?

If you go to webpages in French, you can always uses an online translator to get the gist of what is being said. I tend to use : https://translate.google.com/#auto/en/ for any languages with which I am not overly familiar.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
In UK I make a profit of £1500 per month...What I want to know is would that profit cover income tax, cotisations, the rent and bills on a small flat or small house in the cheap part of France (Auvergne) and food...I am used to living on nothing and that profit is enough to survive in UK...In short would a business profit of £1500 (or equivalent in euro) be enough to rent a small flat in cheap part of france and cover all taxes and bill and food?
 

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Making lutes is definitely not an excluded occupation under the AE scheme. I think you'd fall under the category of being a "sales" based business, which means you're subject to the higher limit (and, as said before, no allowance for your costs of doing business).

If you're certain you can eek 1500GBP out of your business ona consistent basis, that's about 2100€ a month. That means no more than 700€ for rent and leaves you 1400€ a month for food, transport, amusement and day to day living expenses.

The key thing, I guess, will be getting your AE business set up and running so as to return some consistent return to you. (Check particularly your costs of material and doing business here in France, which may vary quite a bit from what you're used to in the UK - particularly the percentage you'll pay for your cotisations, based on your turnover rather than your "profits.")
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi,

The business has already existed for years. I would simply be changing locations from UK to France.

So out of 2100, about 500 would go on cotisations leaving me with 1600 for rent, taxes, bills and food (I can amuse myself). Would that be enough to rent a small flat in the cheaper, more rural part of the Auvergne and survive...That is the question I have been asking all along. It seems like quite simple question but no-one has answered it yet.
 

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Hi,

The business has already existed for years. I would simply be changing locations from UK to France.

So out of 2100, about 500 would go on cotisations leaving me with 1600 for rent, taxes, bills and food (I can amuse myself). Would that be enough to rent a small flat in the cheaper, more rural part of the Auvergne and survive...That is the question I have been asking all along. It seems like quite simple question but no-one has answered it yet.
I can't answer you with much certainty since I don't live there but you could easily manage it here in Spain. We, three adults and two small dogs, with house fully paid for (i.e. no mortgage nor rent) can manage reasonably comfortably on €650 per month. Cost of living is certainly cheaper than in UK. Our council tax on a five bed/2 bath house is €131 a year, car tax on a Peugeot Partner (small MPV) is €61 p.a. Food is, on the whole, cheaper and of much better quality, it is fresher, tastier and definitely not suffering from jet-lag having been flown halfway round the world.

Since you don't mention a workshop, I take it that you will be working in your "spare room". Will that cause you problems with landlords/neighbours, not necessarily from the noise point of view but smells (lacquers etc.?

You are aware that in the Auvergne, it can get rather cold and dismal in the winter and you might need to factor in a certain amount for heating?
 

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People are 'surviving' in tents at Calais, so yes, you will survive but what life are you looking for?

You are stacking up problems to make it difficult from the 'off' - unless you already have quite a bit of money behind you, particularly with trying to start a business.

Who will be your clients? English speakers over here or export?

The first is a very limited market & I would guess that shipping will cost fortune - and there's probably a law restricting storage of adhesives and saying that you can't make guitars in a domestic environment with neighbours. :rolleyes:

I don't know, but it's just taken me a full-day reading up for a permit for my business, only to discover that it isn't a path for me at the moment.

Why not come over for a month & see how far your money goes?

You may also be surprised how difficult it is to find 'friends' as people don't rush to talk to you in the pub like in some countries.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi,

Well Spain sounds nice but I can't speak a word of Spanish...Don't really feel up to learning a language from scratch...Plus I think it might get a bit too hot in the summer...I would be working in a spare room..There's not a lot of noise and I don't use laquers..just tru-oil which doesn't smell at all really...I guess a detached house in the country would be the best...
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I already have established the business. Of course I can make guitars with neighbours, that's what I do now in a room in a terraced house...It's all handcrafted, it's not like a factory...not much noise, no harsh chemicals..But we're getting off track. I just want to know if you can eat and rent a 1 bed flat or house in the cheap part of central france on a profit of £1,500 per month...Seems like I'm banging my head against the wall here to get such a straighforward question answered. I guess I will just have to go to France to find out for myself

People are 'surviving' in tents at Calais, so yes, you will survive but what life are you looking for?

You are stacking up problems to make it difficult from the 'off' - unless you already have quite a bit of money behind you, particularly with trying to start a business.

Who will be your clients? English speakers over here or export?

The first is a very limited market & I would guess that shipping will cost fortune - and there's probably a law restricting storage of adhesives and saying that you can't make guitars in a domestic environment with neighbours. :rolleyes:

I don't know, but it's just taken me a full-day reading up for a permit for my business, only to discover that it isn't a path for me at the moment.

Why not come over for a month & see how far your money goes?

You may also be surprised how difficult it is to find 'friends' as people don't rush to talk to you in the pub like in some countries.
 

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I already have established the business. Of course I can make guitars with neighbours, that's what I do now in a room in a terraced house...It's all handcrafted, it's not like a factory...not much noise, no harsh chemicals..But we're getting off track. I just want to know if you can eat and rent a 1 bed flat or house in the cheap part of central france on a profit of £1,500 per month...Seems like I'm banging my head against the wall here to get such a straighforward question answered. I guess I will just have to go to France to find out for myself
Yes.

Yes.

The difficult part might be finding someone to rent you a place. It's not as easy as back home, but Bon Courage.........
 

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Why don't you look at rents on le bon coin? (google it for the Auvergne) It is a free ad website. You will probably struggle though to rent an unfurnished single apartment or house because they will be suspicious of you not having a record of employment in France (they like payslips and proof that you will be able to survive) and you can only rent one third of your salary so as Bev says this is about 700 euros. So go look on le bon coin.
 

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Luthiers have become rare in France, so you might well pick up extra work here (i.e over and above your current customers). That said, I don't know to what expect you could pick up customers in the Auvergne :D

Yes, you could survive on what you envisage, provided you find a suitable rental (estimate one third of what you make) - your life would be simple, but that's not always the most important thing for everyone.
I am, of course, assuming you can cook food from scratch and make the most of local market produce according to the various seasons :D
I would suggest in the first instance you research rentals in your chosen area to determine what is available at what price.
 

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Hi,

The business has already existed for years. I would simply be changing locations from UK to France.

So out of 2100, about 500 would go on cotisations leaving me with 1600 for rent, taxes, bills and food (I can amuse myself). Would that be enough to rent a small flat in the cheaper, more rural part of the Auvergne and survive...That is the question I have been asking all along. It seems like quite simple question but no-one has answered it yet.
No, as I tried to explain to you before, the cotisations are based on your turnover, NOT your profit. As an AE, no one gives a fig about your profit. Your cotisations are based on turnover and turnover alone. You make a guitar and sell it for 500€, you'll pay the cotisation based on the 500€. If you spent 600€ on making the guitar, that's your tough luck. If the rate for sellers is 13.3%, then you'll pay 13.3% of 500€ toward your cotisations.

I'm assuming you know your costs reasonably well and that the 2100 "profit" as you call it is what's left over after you've paid for all your materials and other expenses of your business. But as an AE, you don't have to keep track of any of that, and frankly the government doesn't really care. They assess your cotisations and income taxes based on the 500€ you were paid for the guitar.

It's a simplified system - which means you don't have to bother keeping books. You just issue invoices for what you sell and that's what the whole system is based on. There are obvious disadvantages to that. The AE system is only intended to help folks starting up a business, and is meant to free them from the "burdens" of keeping books until they get a sense of where their business is going to go.

So, the long way around of saying that the 2100€ is after you've paid your cotisations and taken care of all your business related expenses. The 700€ a month rent is based on the rule that you need to be making 3 times the rent to qualify for most flats or other rentals.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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for a start many people live in the country area where I am on far less than the income you suggest ; in fact two people could live on that here if their needs were modest !

le bon coin is , as suggested , an excellent idea ; start by looking at Lozere in languedoc roussilon where I live , beautiful area

for example , have a look at the 3 roomed house in Ispagnac , no garden which might suit you , living accomodation on the first floor and the attic as a workshop

€350/month including a deposit on the water bill !

the reason I suggest that is it is the tarn gorges , full of tourists in the summer , might even bring in some passing trade !

recently it became possible for non retired people to join the french medical system easily , which is important ; and with a 2 year MOT and no road tax running a small car is possible if that's what you want although purchase prices are high unless you import from the uk

sounds like you alreay speak some french ...go for it !
 

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for a start many people live in the country area where I am on far less than the income you suggest ; in fact two people could live on that here if their needs were modest !

le bon coin is , as suggested , an excellent idea ; start by looking at Lozere in languedoc roussilon where I live , beautiful area

for example , have a look at the 3 roomed house in Ispagnac , no garden which might suit you , living accomodation on the first floor and the attic as a workshop

€350/month including a deposit on the water bill !

the reason I suggest that is it is the tarn gorges , full of tourists in the summer , might even bring in some passing trade !

recently it became possible for non retired people to join the french medical system easily , which is important ; and with a 2 year MOT and no road tax running a small car is possible if that's what you want although purchase prices are high unless you import from the uk

sounds like you alreay speak some french ...go for it !
The OP would get access to the French health system via his AE, provided, of course, that he has enough income over the required period of time.
 

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I just want to know if you can eat and rent a 1 bed flat or house in the cheap part of central france on a profit of £1,500 per month...Seems like I'm banging my head against the wall here to get such a straighforward question answered. I guess I will just have to go to France to find out for myself
The reason it's impossible to answer that question is because you're not giving people the crucial information. You're only telling people your "profit", which is irrelevant to 'take home pay' in the AE scheme because the entire scheme is based on turnover not profit. If to achieve a profit of 20 000 your turnover is 32 000 your cotisations would be 8 000 leaving you with 12 000 to live on. If in order to achieve that same profit your turnover is 24 000 your cotisations would be 6 000 leaving you with 14 000 to live on. Either way, your supposition that cotisations on 21 000 'profit' would be 5 000 would only be correct if your overheads (raw materials, tools, shipping, advertising, travel etc) were virtually nil. Maybe that is the case? but people don't know that unless you tell them, the uninitiated would imagine that the raw materials alone must represent a significant expense.

On top of cotisations you would have a few other relatively minor businesses expenses such as the cost of the obligatory course for artisans before you can start the business (around 200€ or thereabouts plus the cost of an intepreter if you decide you want to take one along), chamber de métiers (chamber of industry) fees and CFE (an annual local business tax) once you get into the second calendar year. Plus personal expenses such as taxe d'habitation (though you may get a low income concession), property insurance because in France the tenant not the landlord is obliged to insure the property, electricity, water, probably wood for heating, and perhaps a topup healthcare policy if you opt to pay for one, since healthcare isn't free at the point of delivery in France and if your income is low you might not want to risk incurring a bill you can't pay. Though you might get state help with that.

So to try to get an answer to your question you need to do the sums based on turnover and also bear in mind that it's not normal for AEs to register for TVA, so you couldn't charge TVA to clients nor reclaim it on purchases so if you are VAT registered in the UK this could change the profit margin. If the answer comes out at nearer 12 000 then frankly I would doubt if that is enough to live on comfortably if you are paying rent - and I've lived on a shoestring in France as an auto entrepreneur myself.

To clarify, unfortunately it seems that luthier is classed as artisanal not commerçant, hence cotisations at the artisan rate, obligation to go on the pre-set up course and pay chamber fees.
https://www.infogreffe.fr/societes/informations-et-dossiers-entreprises/dossiers-thematiques/creation-entreprise/creation-entreprise-statut-entreprise.html
((Sorry, I know you said no links in French but what else can you do, you need to go to the official source to get correct information and the official source is always in French)
 
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