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Payment of rent for private housing 

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

The tenant must pay the rent on the date indicated in the lease. In return for this payment, he may ask the owner for rent. In case of difficulty in paying the rent, the tenant must try to reach an agreement with the landlord (example: partial payment of the rent) to avoid having a late payment or a rental debt. The landlord may revise the rent annually, if the lease so provides (annual review clause).


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.


  • 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.


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General case

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


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.


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.


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


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


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.


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.

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