Hoping forum might answer some questions for potential business visa

I run a vintage warehouse in UK and before changes would travel and housesit and buy goods several times a year in France (our happy place).

Once all the changes had settled down we decided to once again travel to France and see if we could still import items back to the UK - this has been a relatively simple process, mostly because my business is registered with all the necessary tax details etc and we have made two journeys so far this year buying secondhand vintage items using the EORI import system and declaring all the goods.

So, we would like to look into staying in France for longer than a month at a time and increasing our buying amounts and time spent doing so.  Ideally we would like to rent a property for a year initially and travel back and forth every 3 months or so once our buying is complete.

Having looked at Visa information, I am not sure which type of Visa would be the one that we would need to complete - we would still have a business running in the UK which has traded for 10 years and has a papertrail to show its legality - we would be able to show financial records to show ability to self fund for the time in France but which type we fall under is a little baffling.

Hope someone can assist

You need to start with a Long-term Visa and once you get to France and have found a place to rent, you can then register at your Prefectures office for a residency Visa, renewable annually at the Prefectures in France.

@beckychanceux.  You don't need a visa if you stay no more than 90 days in France, every 6 months. ( 180 days/year) You only need a valid passport. The owner of the house you will rent will have to submit an "attestation d'accueil" to the city hall. You will also need an health insurance and prove you can afford to spend 32 euro/day/person to sustain yourself, for every day of your planned stay in France. If you want to stay more than 90 days, you will have to apply for a C visa at French consulate. 

As far as documents needed to live in France? it's a big mystery. Wife and I are french coming back to settle again in France. It took us 1 year of paperwork..., yes, one full year. To the point where my wife wanted to fall asleep, never to wake up. France is sunk into millions of tons of paperwork. You need to file for this and that, and each application require basically the same info. Guess what? Those offices could easily transfer those documents to the next office. Nope, no communication between any department. They lose your files a hundred times, your responsibility to send them again, again..., and again. France is a nightmare. French people are not fun, always sad, they dress in black and dark clothes like they have lost an entire family. After a year in France, we can't wait to move to Spain.

@dwoudenberg2002 amazing information thank you so much
@partoutati - well that made me giggle !! We wont be moving to France permenantly, but want to be travelling with the correct information and paperwork - Good luck with your move to Spain
@slowslo thats very useful information, appreciate the reply.
It might well be that we can make it fit so we dont have to apply for a Visa which would be so much easier.
Thank you very much
Being a Yank I do not know the mess that Brexit has caused. So you need to at least spend time trying to get information from the French Embassy in England. And once you cross over the channel each Department gets the same rules from Paris but the Prefect of the department decides how it works. And if you stay in one place the Mayor is involved. Maybe they do not see anything or they go hard. Since you were doing this before I would start with areas and people that you have worked with. To get the feel and learn the new game. The one hard fact is that the EU is keeping track of Passports and people coming and going. So if you do it without a visa it is a 90-day limit. And 180 days per year. And you should try to stay within the limits of the law. If you get stuck and overstay make sure to document the why. I was warned that the EU is pushing to enforce the rules. We Yanks were always just able to come, to go, stay, whatever. But now I have to follow the rules or I may not be able to get on a plane to anywhere in the EU. So I got a long-stay visa in 2017 and when I got here I found out that I had emigrated. We only stay just less than 1/2 of the year each year. And that is not something that is understood.   So ask away and I will tell you what I know.