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Money Matters and Legal / In Law

Parisian tenants will soon require owner’s permission to sublet property

Tenants wishing to sublet their properties on short-term rental websites such as Airbnb will need to prove they have the owner’s explicit permission, according to a recently if a proposed amendment is implemented. Individuals who fail to do so risk a hefty fine, as does the rental platform.

In France, tenants may soon no longer be able to use rental platforms such as Airbnb to sublet their properties unless they hold written permission from the owner.

An amendment to the Digital Republic bill — projet de loi pour une République Numérique — was recently adopted by French deputies. It would make it illegal to sublet property without explicit permission from the tenant’s landlord. In order to pass, the measure and its full text will have to be voted in at the National Assembly and by the Senate.

Tenants are not currently required to present documents proving they are authorized to sublet a property. It is simply understood they must abide by the terms of their lease. The new measure would see tenants obligated to provide documents proving they have been permitted to sublet a property and rental platforms required to verify such documents.

In case of non-compliance, individuals will risk a 25,000 euro fine, while a rental platform failing to check for proof of authorization will face penalties of up to 80,000 euros.

Sandrine Mazetier, the deputy who introduced the bill, has stated that “many people rent out property they do not own” and that the amendment strives to outlaw this practice. Nonetheless, critics believe the proposed fines are disproportionate and that a lesser amount would be sufficiently dissuasive.

Digital Minister Axelle Lemaire is opposed to the measure, telling the Assembly that “It is premature at this stage to definitively address this problem, but I am committed to providing alternative solutions by the end of the year, because we are very conscious of the loss of tax revenue caused by these behaviors.”

Short-term rentals have been at the heart of much debate for a while. The City of Paris has recently conducted spontaneous inspections to hunt down illegal short-term rentals in the capital. Paris is Airbnb’s top city in the world, with 50,000 rental properties advertised in the city. In order to show its willingness to cooperate with city officials, the company recently agreed to collect the tourist tax on behalf of its users.

Photo credit: JuMoSc

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