Can you exchange your social housing (HLM) between tenants?

Verified 03 November 2023 - Legal and Administrative Information Directorate (Prime Minister)

The exchange is authorized (without having to provide justification to the landlord) if the tenants of the 2 dwellings comply with the following 5 conditions:

  • They live in an empty rented accommodation
  • They ask the lessor
  • The 2 dwellings belong to the same landlord and are rented in the same building complex (same group of buildings)
  • One of the 2 families has at least 3 children
  • The exchange allows the larger family to occupy a larger dwelling

If these 5 conditions are not met, any request for an exchange of accommodation requires the prior written consent of the lessor. Tenants who exchange their homes without the landlord's agreement may have their lease terminated.

After the exchange, each of the tenants continues the lease of the other, under the same conditions and clauses. None can be considered a new entrant.


In Île-de-France, to facilitate housing exchanges, some social landlords have set up a internet exchange.

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