Whether you’re searching for an apartment in Paris or elsewhere, or looking to rent before you buy in France, we’ve put together all the essential vocabulary and need-to-know property jargon for renting a property in France. How many of these words did you know already?
House Hunting/Choosing an Apartment in France
Ready to start house hunting or searching for an apartment? These are the French words and phrases that you’ll need to know.
Agence Immobilière/ agent immobilier – real estate agency/real estate agent.
À Louer – to rent
Une location – a property for rent
Locataire/ Locateur – renter/tenant
Propriétaire – landlord
Co-Locataire – co-renters
Immobiliers/un bien – properties/a property. This could be a maison (house), appartement (flat), immeuble(building)or logement (accommodation).
Frais d’agence/ honoraires d’Agence – Real estate agency fees
Hors Taxe or HT – Price, not including sales tax
Understanding property announcements
T1/T2/T3 – Designates the number of rooms. A T2 apartment means a 2-room apartment, but note that this will be 1 bedroom + 1 living space. The kitchen, bathroom, and toilet are not counted as separate rooms.
Surface Habitable – Floor space in m2
Libre de Suite – Available immediately
Loyer – Rent
CC or Charges Comprises / HC or Hors Charges– Includes Charges/doesn’t include charges. This indicates whether the listed rental price includes or doesn’t include building charges (these could include rubbish pickup, building maintenance fees, or gardening fees, and are typically non-negotiable).
Charges Locatives – The building charges due to the tenant.
Pièce – Room
étage – Floor
Meublé – Furnished
Voisinage – Neighborhood
Double Vitrage – Double-Glazed Windows
Douche Italienne – Walk-In Shower
Cour – Courtyard
Climatisation – Air conditioning
Concierge – Caretaker, who usually lives on site,
Dépendence – Outbuilding
Cuisine équipée et aménagée – a fitted kitchen with cupboards and kitchen appliances
Chambre – Bedroom
Chauffage Central – Central heating
Cheminée – Fireplace
Cuisine équipée – a kitchen with cupboards
Visiting the property/your dossier
Une Visite – a house viewing
Bon de Visite – Some agencies require this certificate to be signed prior to visiting a property.
Dossier – You’ll likely be asked for this before you are able to arrange a property visit, and it will typically include your Carte d’identité – ID card or passport, previous Quittances de loyer – rent recipes, and previous Bulletins de salaire – payslips, Avis d’imposition – Tax bill, or Contrat de travail – Work Contract
Fiche de Renseignements – Real estate agency form to submit with your dossier
Signing the Rental Agreement
Le bail – lease/a rental contract, either un bail nu for an unfurnished property or un bail meublé for a furnished property.
Le bailleur – the property owner/landlord
Clause Particulière – Conditions particular to your lease
Dépôt de Garantie – Security Deposit
Durée du Contrat – Rental Period
La caution/ le garant – a co-signer or guarantor
Garantie des Loyers Impayés or GLI – Landlord’s insurance policy
Dossier de Candidature/ Le dossier de location – the file of documents to be presented at the signing of the rental agreement. A typical dossier might include:
- une photocopie de votre carte d’identité (a photocopy of your passport)
- trois derniers bulletins de salaire (your last three payslips)
- un justificatif de domicile (proof of your current address)
- le dernier avis d’imposition (your last tax return)
- un garant (a guarantor)
- votre carte de séjour (your French residence card)
- votre RIB (your French bank account details)
- trois derniers quittances de loyer de votre dernière location (receipts of payment from the last rental property you stayed in).
Mandataire – Third-party or agency who has a mandate to manage the property on behalf of the landlord
Préavis – Notice period
Prelèvement Automatique – Direct debit
Obligations du Locataire – Tenant obligations as per the lease
Obligations du Bailleur – Landlord obligations as per the lease
Resiliation – Cancellation of a contract
Responsabilité Civile – Third-party liability
L’état des lieux – the inventory/property inspection carried out prior to renting
Renting in France
Assurance d’habitation – Home insurance, which includes your civil liability insurance. Renters are obliged by law to take out an annual policy, and your landlord will likely ask to see a copy.
Taxe d’habitation – Council tax, or residency tax, due and payable wherever you are living on January 1st
Taxe foncière – Property tax
Titre Interbancaire de Paiement or TIP – You can pay your utility and insurance bills with a “TIP,” like a check that you date and sign
Avis d’échéance – Rental invoice
à la charge du locataire -tenant’s charges
Le revenu foncier – rental income
La sous-location – subletting
Moving to France?
From applying for your visa and opening a French bank account, to integrating in your new community – FrenchEntrée is here to help! Let our Essential Reading and Visa & Residency articles guide you through the whole process, then visit our Owning Property, French Tax, Healthcare, and Life in France zones for everything else you need to know.
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