Housing and administrative procedures

The administrative steps

Renting a property in France also requires many administrative steps. Let's see together what are the main steps of this process and the documents that are usually required.

Step 1 : Putting together your rental file
Step 2: Sign the lease or rental contract
Step 3: Do the inventory of fixtures
Step 4 : Take out home insurance
Step 5: Take out a gas and/or electricity subscription
Step 6: Apply for housing subsidies

Step 1 : Putting together your rental file

Before you even start looking for a place to live, we advise you to start gathering the documents that your future landlord will ask you for. Even if you have a good rental file, the vast majority of landlords or university residences will ask you for a guarantor. It is important to understand that the landlord takes a significant risk of non-payment by renting the accommodation and therefore seeks guarantees in addition to your rental file.
Go to our housing FAQ to find out in detail all the required supporting documents and advice on how to find your guarantor easily!

Step 2: Sign the lease or rental contract

The lease or rental agreement is the document that you and your future landlord will sign in order to define the conditions under which you will have the right to occupy the property. Most of the time, the following information appears in the contract

  • The amount of rent and charges
  • The amount of the security deposit (the deposit)
  • The length of the notice period

When yousign your lease, you will be asked to pay the first month's rent and the security deposit. You should therefore have enough money to pay the equivalent of two months' rent at once.

Step 3: Do the inventory of fixtures

Before you can move in and once you have signed your lease, there is one last step to take: the inventory of fixtures of your apartment. Very important, this is the moment when you will have to check the state of the apartment with your landlord : be vigilant and pay attention to all the details when you review the rooms and fittings (cupboards, sanitary facilities, etc.). Don't hesitate to point out any minor problems and have them noted on the inventory of fixtures before signing it. This is the same document that your landlord will use as a basis for your exit inventory of fixtures and to verify the condition in which you are returning the apartment.

Step 4: Take out home insurance

Whatever type of accommodation you choose, you will be legally obliged to take out a home insurance policy covering water damage, fire , theft and vandalism.

This insurance covers the premises and their contents (equipment).
You can contact the student mutual insurance company Heyme, the university's partner, the CROUS housing service or your bank.

Step 4: Take out a gas or electricity subscription

If you are renting your own apartment in the private sector, you will need to take out an electricity and/or gas subscription. There are several energy suppliers in France, so don't hesitate to compare their offers.
If you rent a room in a university residence, the price of electricity and gas is usually already included in your rent and you will not have to take out an additional subscription.

Want to get an idea of what your monthly budget will be?
Check out our page on the cost of living in the region!

CAF housing assistance

Students can benefit from financial aid for housing (APL) by applying for a housing allowance from the Caisse des Allocations Familiales (CA F) online. The amount of assistance varies according to the amount of rent and the student's status.
Test your eligibility with the online simulation.

You should know that other complementary aid exists, don't hesitate to consult our social aid FAQ to learn more!