After months of anticipation, the law establishing the list of supporting documents and records for a guarantee that a prospective tenant can be asked for came into force on November 8th, 2015. It applies to applies to both furnished and unfurnished rental properties, meaning that requesting other documents can lead to landlords being fined.
For furnished and unfurnished rentals, the list of documents is limited
Article n°2015-1437 of November 5th, 2015, applies to all rental contracts, both furnished and unfurnished, that represent the tenant’s principal residence.
The list is limited, which means that it’s illegal to demand other documents or records for a guarantee from a future tenant, and anyone doing so can be subject to penalties.
Legislators had previously drawn up a list of documents that landlords could not request from prospective tenants. This list, which was designed to put an end to abusive practices often reported by clients’ companies, was largely broadcasted by la Halde (the French Equal Opportunities and Anti-Discrimination Commission). In practice, this new law won’t lead to any real change. Landlords now know precisely which documents they can request.
What are the penalties when a tenant is asked for records that do not feature in this list?
A landlord who asks for records other than those mentioned in this list, which is set by law, could be ordered to pay, within a year of the matter in dispute, a fine of up to €3,000 for a physical person and € 15,000 for a corporate body.
Original records or copies?
Records or guarantees sent by future tenants can be copies of the original documents and, if necessary, translated into French with currencies converted into euros. The original documents, however, must be presented by the tenant if requested by the landlord.
Where to find the list of documents and guarantee records that can be requested from a prospective tenant
The list of documents and records is available on the website Legifrance. It includes:
- One valid identity document that includes a photograph and holder’s signature
- One proof of residence
- One or more documents serving as proof of profession
- One or more documents serving as proof of income