Agency fees for renters finally capped

Couple happy about new agency fees

Since September 15th, 2014, those costly “agency fees” that renters in France have to pay when they go through a real estate agency are now set according to the size of the apartment and where it’s located. This is thanks to the rental access and urban planning law (ALUR). 

The fee usually when you sign a lease as a locataire is about one month’s rent but there has never been a cap on the charge. Now, for those living in and around Paris, the fee will be €12 per square metre while in the other big cities, the rate drops to €10. Everywhere else in France, renters can count on €8 per square metre. 

The good with the bad: with this regulation, agencies can now charge renters for “move-in inspections”, which will cost you €3 per square metre anywhere in France.

So what does it all mean? Well, compare a 40sqm, €1100 a month, apartment in Paris, where fees would now be capped at €600 – that’s a 45% decrease – to a 45sqm, €543 a month unit in Bordeaux, which would now have to pay €585 in agency fees with the inspection costs.

France’s national union of real estate agents, FNAIM, claims that those in the nation’s capital have to spend three to four times more of their salary on a buying property than those living in other parts of the country. Really, have they ever been to the Côte d’Azur?