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Will you need to pay the French council tax (taxe d’habitation) for a furnished rental property?

In this post, Lodgis, the real estate agency specialising in furnished rentals in Paris, tells you all you need to know about the French council tax (taxe d’habitation) for tenants in a furnished rental property.

What is the council tax (taxe d’habitation)?

The council tax (taxe d’habitation) is a local property tax charged by the town/area (commune) in which your property is located. It is calculated annually based on your situation on the 1st of January and the duration of your rental.


Who pays the council tax (taxe d’habitation)?

If you are renting a furnished property, whether or not you are French, you will be liable to pay the council tax IF:

  • You were a resident occupying the property on the 1st of January of the tax year, even if you have moved out since this date AND:
  • If you renting long enough

 

If it’s a seasonal rental (for a night/a week/a few months), you will not have to pay this tax.

Lodgis Tip: If you renting as principal residence, you have to pay the taxe if you live in the apartament on January 1st. On the other hand, you’ll not be liable for the rental tax for a rental of only a few months, even if it took place precisely at the beginning of the year.

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How is the council tax (taxe d’habitation) calculated?

Whether you pay the council tax (taxe d’habitation) is based on your situation on the 1st of January and the duration of your stay. The total amount you will be required to pay is determined by the following criteria:

  • The valeur locative brute (the annual rent that the property would be expected to collect in the open market)
  • The abattements (discounts taking into account family expenses, low income households and disabilities)
  • The cotisation par collectivité (the valeur locative brute -the abattements)
  • The property management costs (les frais de gestion)
  • The revenu fiscal de référence (the tenant’s taxable income)

 

Lodgis Tip: How much tax you pay depends on the area (commune) in which you’re living. However, were you to move to another region of France after January 1st, at the end of the year you would pay the amount of tax that corresponds to the area of your former residence. For example, if you were renting an apartment in Lyon on January 1st and have since moved to Paris for 12 months (9 months as a student), you must pay the tax based on your property in Lyon.


How to pay the council tax (taxe d’habitation)?

If you are the liable person (the occupant of the property on January 1st), the tax notice (avis d’imposition) must be in your name. For example, if you are the tenant of a long-term rental that you occupied on January 1st, you cannot pay the council tax if it is in the name of the owner or property landlord.

Generally, the person liable to pay will receive a tax notice in October. The deadline for paying the tax will be indicated on the document. It is usually in November but varies based on whether it’s a primary, secondary or temporary residence, and the chosen payment method

There are a number of ways to pay the council tax (taxe d’habitation):

  • Le prélèvement à l’échéance (a form of mature payment whereby your bank account is debited for the total annual amount 10 days after the deadline indicated on your tax notice)
  • Le prélèvement mensuel (a direct debit taken on the 15th of each month)
  • Payment online via http://www.impots.gouv.fr or using the app (these methods give you an extra 5 days to pay after the deadline)
  • In cash at your local tax office (service des impôts compétents)
  • By bank transfer (using the account details for your local tax centre, which will appear on your tax notice)
  • By cheque
  • By titre interbancaire de paiement (a payment method allowing you to make long distance payments. Take the form enclosed with your notice, fill out your bank details, date it, sign it and send it to the address given)

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If you have any further questions regarding the council tax (la taxe d'habitation) for furnished rentals, we recommend contacting the French tax authorities online (http://www.impots.gouv.fr/portal/dgi/public/contactspart) or by telephone (0810 467 687)

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