Finding a flat in Paris

Finding a flat in Paris is not an easy task. You may think choosing your place in such a big and cosmopolitan city should not be that complicated but believe me, it's almost shocking how things are working for the renting business in the ville lumiere!

First of all agencies apply nefarious fees corresponding to a month rent, and this is just for paying them taking you to visit the flat and to write a contract (that will probably be based on a template I guess!). So your first decision should be if you really want to pay those fees or if you prefer to go through privates.

If you decide to go for the cheapest option, there a couple of good websites: pap & leboncoin where you can filter area, max price, number of rooms etc.

Obviously what you will find will depend on your budget, but, be ready for high prices, old houses especially if centrally located, ridiculously small dimensions (10-15m2 are not unusual), upper floors with no lifts.

In any case, when you find anything that you consider interesting and you get in touch with the owner they will ask you to have your dossier ready and this is when things become funny. This dossier must include: your passport, your 3 latest payslips, your work contract stating your annual income, your RIB or bank account details, your last 2 tax declarations. 

Do you think that's it? Nope. Some may also ask latest receipts of your council tax and all of them will ask you for someone to guarantee for you in case you are not able to pay your rent. Doesn't really matter your age or if you have enough savings to pay a year rent, you still need your parents to guarantee for you!!

Once the owner of your chosen place is happy with your dossier you can go for a visit where you will often meet a group of other visitors. If you are interested in the flat your dossier will be compared to those of the other interested visitors and the wealthiest and more solid one will win the chance to pay a one or 2 months deposit before installing themselves in their new home.

I know this may sound scary, but don’t worry too much, the most important thing is knowing what to expect in advance and being prepared. And even if all I have said is simply the truth, this doesn’t mean you can’t have a bit of luck. You may actually be the first one to see the flat, you may like the place a lot and your future landlord or landlady may find you very nice and decide to give it to you straight away.
And the whole process may take no longer than a week….

Bonne courage!


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