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Renting In France: Everything You Need To Know About French Rental And Eviction Laws


When renting property in France, it is important to be aware of the country’s rental and eviction laws. These laws vary from other countries, so it is crucial to have a clear understanding of them before signing a lease.

The first step is to hire a French real estate lawyer who can help you navigate the legal system and ensure that you are protected. It is also a good idea to have a French attorney on hand in case any issues arise.

Keep reading to learn more about French rental and eviction laws, and how to protect yourself

The basics of renting in France

Under French law, tenants have security of tenure when renting property, meaning that they can remain in the property for as long as their contract sets out. Unlike other countries, tenants cannot be evicted without a court order, even if their rent is late or unpaid. In France, rental contracts are known as bail and must be in writing and signed by both parties. Standard rental contracts are typically valid for three years, but the parties can agree on shorter or longer terms. As an owner, you cannot simply terminate the contract during the agreed period, unless the tenant breaches certain clauses of the contract.

The French rental market

As with any other property market, the French rental market is a competitive one. Many landlords demand proof of income and references to ensure that their tenants will be reliable, and often require a security deposit to be paid up front.

The types of tenancy agreements

In France, there are two types of tenancy agreements: an ‘unfurnished’ contract, and a ‘furnished’ contract. Unfurnished contracts are typically used for long-term rentals whereas furnished contracts are used for short-term or student residences. The obligations as an owner renting your place: As an owner renting your place, you are legally obliged to provide the tenant with a written rental agreement, usually in the form of a bail. You must keep a copy of this agreement at all times and provide the tenant with a copy as well. You are also responsible for making sure that the rental property meets health, safety, and sanitation standards while the tenant is in residence.

French eviction law

Evicting a tenant from a property in France is a lengthy process and cannot be done unless the tenant has breached a clause of their contract. Even if the tenant is late or behind on rent payments, a court order is required for eviction. In some cases, a warning is first given to the tenant before court proceedings.

French lease law

French lease law is similar to that of other countries, but the legalities of it differ slightly. You must abide by the terms of the tenancy agreement by providing a safe, comfortable home for the tenant and carrying out repairs in a timely manner. Failure to do either can result in legal action being taken against you.

Renting a furnished or unfurnished property

In France, you have the option to rent out your property either furnished or unfurnished. A furnished rental usually comes with all the necessary items such as beds, tables, and chairs. An unfurnished rental may include a refrigerator, stove, and washing machine, but little else. The tenant is responsible for furnishing their own residence.

How to end your tenancy

If you decide to terminate the tenancy agreement, it is important to do so properly. French law specifies that the notice period must be given in writing and sent by registered post. The notice period can be between two months and one year, depending on the length of the rental contract. Security Deposits: A security deposit is usually required when renting in France. This deposit is held in a special bank account and is refunded to the tenant when the tenancy agreement ends. This deposit is meant to cover any damages done to the property or any unpaid rent. In some cases, it may even be used to cover the cost of moving out and cleaning the property.


About the Author :

Business lawyers, bilingual, specialized in acquisition law; Benoit Lafourcade is co-founder of Delcade lawyers & solicitors and founder of FRELA; registered as agents in personal and professional real estate transactions. Member of AAMTI (main association of French lawyers and agents).

FRELA : French Real Estate Lawyer Agency, specializing in acquisition law to secure real estate and business transactions in France.

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