Fed up with the outrageous charges that French estate agents levy on tenants, the French government has stepped in. A new law, known as ALUR, has limited the maximum charges based on the size of the property and its location in one of three zones around the country.
- In Paris and its surrounding area (the zone très tendue), agents will be allowed to charge no more than €12 per square meter for administration fees, plus a €3 per m2 inventory fee.
- In 28 other urban areas (zone tendue), the cap will be at €10 per square meter, plus inventory fee.
- For the rest of France, an €8 per m2 cap applies, plus the inventory charge.
In the past, many tenants expected to pay a month’s rent in agents’ fees for a new apartment, the highest in Europe. This new fee structure means that someone renting a 40-square-metre place in Paris for €1,100 a month, the new rules would cap your administration fees at €480, plus an inventory fee of €120, representing a 45% decrease in costs. Although a €600 fee still out does London’s average of £ 220.
However, properties in the lower zones could end up paying more than a month’s rent in fees if the maximum cap is applied. 45m2 properties in Bordeaux, for example, could be charged 110% of the monthly rent.
This shows the problem with trying to regulate tenant fees in a complicated and over-heated rental market. When fees are levied on tenants, someone always loses out. This is why Rentify believes that tenants looking for a property shouldn’t face charges – the letting agent works for the landlord and is being paid by the landlord to find a tenant. With Rentify, our landlord fees are fair and transparent, there’s nothing hidden, nothing charged to the tenant, and certainly no double charging landlord and tenant for the same work.
Flat by Florent Le Gall is used under Creative Commons