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Payment of rent by tenant

Verified 24 August 2022 - Legal and Administrative Information Directorate (Prime Minister)

The rent is payable on the date indicated on the lease. In case of difficulties to pay the rent, it is recommended to inform the owner (also called landlord). The situation differs depending on whether it is private housing or social housing.

Private

Fixing

The rent of an empty or furnished rental unit used as the main residence by the tenant is in principle freely fixed by the owner.

However, municipalities in tense areas are subject to rent guidelines. In these municipalities, the rent is capped when renting the house (in the case of a new tenant) and when renewing the lease (in the case of the same tenant).

To find out if the accommodation is located in a tense zone:

Check that a housing is in a tense area

Attention, specific rules apply to Paris, Lille (Hellemmes, Lomme), Lyon and Villeurbanne, Montpellier, Bordeaux and component communes Common plain and Is Together.

Annual review under lease

The owner may revise rent 1 per year if a clause in the lease so provides.

However, the landlord loses the opportunity to revise the rent if he does not apply to the tenant within one year of the review date.

Warning  

  • In mainland France, where the lease has been signed since August 24, 2022 and concerns accommodation classified F or G (classification indicated on the DPE: titleContent), it is forbidden to revise the rent.
  • In Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guiana, La Réunion and Mayotte, when the lease is signed after the 1to July 2024 and concerns accommodation classified F or G (classification indicated on DPE: titleContent), it is forbidden to revise the rent.

Rules

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General case

Rent and charges shall be payable throughout the term of the lease.

Therefore:

Unsanitary housing

In case of prohibition of residence, the rent shall cease to be due from 1to the day of the month following the date of the unsanitary order.

In case of notice (leave)

In case of notice (leave), the payment period can be adjusted:

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Departure decided by the tenant

The tenant is obliged to pay the rent and expenses during the entire period of notice. Unless, with the agreement of the owner, the accommodation is occupied by another tenant before the end of the notice.

Owner's Notice

The tenant is only obliged to pay the rent and expenses for the time he actually occupied the premises during the notice period.

The tenant must pay the rent and charges on the date specified in the lease.

In general, the rent is payable each month, either at the beginning or at the end of the month.

The landlord may propose to the tenant that the rent be paid by one of the following means:

  • Automatic debit to tenant's bank account
  • Interbank Payment Title
  • check
  • Cash, provided that the amount payable is less than €1 000

The tenant is free to refuse the owner's proposal.

FYI  

the landlord does not have the right to charge the rent on the tenant's salary, even with his agreement.

A rent receipt is a document that certifies that the tenant has paid the rent and all charges.

The owner (or estate agency) is obliged to give free a rent receipt to the tenant, if the tenant so requests.

FYI  

the rent receipt can be sent by e-mail (e-mail), provided the tenant has given his agreement.

The following is a sample letter that the tenant can use to request the landlord to provide a rent receipt:

Request a rental receipt from the landlord

The receipt must show the details of the amounts paid by the tenant, distinguishing the rent and the charges.

Rent Release Template

FYI  

in case of partial payment of the rent, the landlord or the real estate agency must give the tenant a receipt.

No fees may be charged by the owner for late payment.

It doesn't matter whether it's an empty or furnished dwelling.

A clause that allows the owner to collect fines or penalties for violating the lease agreement or the building regulations is abusive (it is ignored, as if it did not exist). It can be brought before the protection litigation judge of the court on which the dwelling depends.

Who shall I contact

FYI  

if the tenant repeatedly pays his rent late, the landlord is entitled not to renew the lease for legitimate and serious reasons.

If the tenant has difficulty paying the rent (but without unpaid rent), he has to try to find an amicable solution with the owner.

In case of persistent difficulties, social assistance may be granted to the tenant. In addition, housing assistance can be maintained to alleviate a rent debt and avoid eviction.

If these difficulties are added to another outstanding debt (e.g.: unpaid credit or invoice), the tenant can file debt overhang.

Reminder

not paying rent and expenses is a reason to termination of the lease by the owner and eviction of the tenant. Paying in part can have the same consequences unless the tenant is not involved (example: non-payment of housing aid decent housing ).

The landlord can claim any outstanding charges or rents for 3 years, including after the tenant's departure. This time limit also applies to the tenant who has paid too many expenses and wants to be reimbursed for the overpayment.

Example :

A rent debt dated July 2021 may be charged until July 2024.

Regularisation is possible for any reason:

  • Forgotten
  • Ignorance
  • Negligence

However, the judge may refuse late settlement of charges if he considers it to be unfair, brutal and consequential fault of the owner in the performance of the contract. For example, when the tenant requested the adjustment of the charges and the landlord did not respond.

FYI  

if the landlord has not revised the rent on the date specified in the lease, it can do that within a year.

Social housing

The amount of rent for social housing is fixed according to a calculation rule for lessor. The amount of rent is then annually.

The tenant can get a monthly reduction in the amount of his rent. This is the solidarity rent reduction (EPIRB).

Solidarity rent supplement (SLS) says surrent can be claimed from the tenant when these revenues exceed maximum amount.

If the tenant's income is even higher, the tenant may lose the right to remain in social housing.

Rent and charges shall be payable throughout the term of the lease.

Therefore:

You must pay your rent and charges on the date specified on your lease.

In general, the rent is payable at the month, either at the beginning or at the end of the month.

If the rent is payable on a different frequency (quarterly for example), the tenant can still require a monthly payment.

You can pay your rent by any means (check, bank transfer or cash up to a maximum amount).

The landlord does not have the right to impose the automatic levy as a means of payment of rent.

The landlord does not have the right to collect or have the rents deducted directly from your salary, even with your agreement.

In case of full payment of the rent (including charges), you can ask your landlord to send you a free rent.

To do this, you can use this letter template:

The receipt must include the following information:

In case of partial payment of the rent, the landlord must give you a receipt.

If you have difficulty paying the rent (but not unpaid), you should try find an amicable solution with the lessor.

In case of persistent difficulties, social assistance may be granted to you.

If these difficulties are added to another outstanding debt (e.g.: unpaid credit or invoice), you can file debt overhang.

Reminder : not paying or paying part of the rent and expenses can be a cause of loss of right to remain.

Reminder

not paying or paying part of the rent and expenses can be a cause of loss of right to remain.

The landlord can claim for 3 years any outstanding charges or rents, including after the tenant's departure. This time limit also applies to the tenant who has paid too many expenses and wants to be reimbursed for the overpayment.

Example :

A rent debt dated July 2021 may be charged until July 2024.

Regularisation is possible for any reason:

  • Forgotten
  • Ignorance
  • Negligence

However, the judge may refuse late settlement of charges if he considers it to be unfair, brutal and consequential fault of the owner in the performance of the contract. For example, when the lessee requested the adjustment of the charges and the lessor did not respond.

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