A fairy-tale venture: Buy a French castle
Before you start picturing yourself in a slightly scaled-down version of Versailles, make a note that "chateaux" is a broadly defined term.
"It can mean a French castle, a French manor house, an estate where wine is produced (or) a large country house," Braunholtz says. "Many vendors seem tempted to define smaller country houses as chateaux for the purposes of a sale."
This 4,306-square-foot castle is set on 4.2 acres within a mountainous area at the center of Regional Nature Park of the Volcanoes in the Auvergne region of south central France. The estate is located in the department (administrative district) of Cantal. Sporting an art deco interior design, the property includes the original 19th century dwelling -- featuring two towers, six bedrooms, three bathrooms and an office -- and a 20th century addition with five bedrooms, two baths, a wine cellar and a playroom/garage. Two other buildings on the grounds, both of which require renovation, contain two bedrooms each and are adjacent to a tennis court.
Asking price: $1,408,945