Renting an apartment in France is quite a complicated process, especially for foreigners. We are writing about what is worth paying attention to, and what documents will be needed when renting an apartment in France. When looking for an apartment, we must define the region or a city district that interests us. How to rent an apartment in France? Check it out!

Where to find apartment in France?

If you want to rent an apartment in France, the easiest way to start is to check the advertisements available on the internet. The most popular French classified portal is Local real estate agencies also advertise their offers on these sites.

Traditional forms of advertising, such as on real estate agency websites, are also very popular in France. Please pay attention to whether the apartment is furnished, as most apartments are offered without furniture, only with equipped kitchen and bathroom. Although to this there are exceptions.

Important! In France, the number of separate rooms is indicated in the advertisements. Which often does not correspond to the number of rooms in the apartment.

  • Apartment T1 / T2 / T3 – where T is the type of apartment, and number – the number of rooms. Kitchen and bathroom count separately.
  • Duplex / Triplex – two or three-level apartments, respectively.
  • Souplex – an apartment with a ground floor and a basement.

Websites with offers for renting apartments in France:

How much is an apartment in France (rent)

Rental prices in France depend of course on the region and the size of the apartment. For example, an apartment type T2 can cost from € 290 – € 350  in the provinces, to up to € 800 – € 1000 in Paris or in another attractive location, e.g. on the Côte d’Azur. However, most often you can find them for around € 450-550 per month.

To the rental price, we must always add charges for water and electricity, they should be between € 50 and € 100 per month. However, there are no so-called rental fees. Knowing what our budget is, we can often find a larger apartment for the same price. When looking for a studio apartment, you should fit in the amount of about € 250 – € 300. The costs of renting an apartment in France are generally attractive in relation to the earnings obtained there.

In France, there is also an obligation to pay an apartment tax (taxe d’habitation). The amounts change practically every year. This is often the equivalent of a monthly rent. The size of the city and district will have an influence on the cost of the tax. At the beginning of 2020, the French government passed a law abolishing an apartment tax for 80% of households. For the others, the tax amount will be reduced to the maximum.

Apartment in France – necessary documents for rent

Renting an apartment by a foreigner is possible on the basis of a document confirming that we have a job and therefore we can afford to pay for the apartment. It is an employment contract, or at least a declaration of intention to be employed by the employer. If we are already working and we only change the apartment, we also have to present the previous electricity bill and bank account number.

We can conclude an agreement directly with the owner, but most often we have to use a real estate agency, which on the one hand is associated with the payment of a commission, on the other hand, however, gives a better guarantee of the correctness of the lease agreement. After concluding the agreement, it is necessary to take out third party liability insurance (cost € 30-40) and sign an agreement for the supply of electricity. These steps are easily accomplished with the help of a real estate agent.

The list below is only an example. Sometimes the landlord or real estate agency may require completely or partially different documents.

It is worth preparing:

  1. Passport / ID card photocopy
  2. Proof of payment for the previous apartment (if is there)
  3. Employment certificate
  4. Tax declaration for the last year
  5. Bank account information

As it can be seen, practically all documents in one way or another prove the financial stability of the potential renting person. That’s why, during the meeting, questions may also be asked about work and earnings. If the person is only just hired, an appropriate certificate must be obtained from the employer (promesse d’embauche).

What should a rental agreement in France contain?

The rental agreement will definitely be in French, but its content is standard, French regulations regarding the rental of real estate are strictly defined, and the parties to the agreement adhere to pre-established rules which are not very possible to modify. The main issue concerns the notice period, we must take into account the fact that, if it is necessary to move out earlier, we still have to cover the cost of the agreement for the period of notice.

The offered rental agreements are short-term for 1 year or long-term for 3 years. Only after a rental agreement has been concluded, we will then open a bank account and sign agreements for the supply of utilities to the apartment.

Moving to another apartment in France

Before the moving directly takes place, all formalities in the previous apartment should be completed. Namely, it is about terminating the contract with the internet operator and writing down the end counters on the internet meter (in the presence of the owner).

Remember, that in France you must also inform EDF (the electricity supplier) of any change in your address. A data update form is filled out on their website If they have additional questions, they will contact directly with the landlords.

Ready to go to work in France? Check current offers!

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