(Direction Générale de la Concurrence, de la Consommation et de la Répression des Fraudes)
Law n° 70-9 regulating the conditions for conducting activities relating to transactions involving real estate and business assets.
Is considered as a vacation rental for the purposes of this Act, the letting of a property for a maximum and non-renewable period of ninety days consecutively to a renter who use it as a holiday home.
The Contract (article L.324-2 du code de tourisme)
Any offer of rental contract must be in written form and include a mention of the price and a description of the holiday rental.
On signing the contract, the renter must be in possession of maximum written informations about the holiday rental, its location and price to avoid subsequent disputes.
Description of the rental (article L.324-2 du code de tourisme)
The manager of the holidayrental (professional, real estate agency or private person) is required to provide to the renter a contract accompanied by a descriptive statement of the holidayrental.
An inventory must be drawn at departure in the presence of the renter and the manager of the holiday rental.
Holiday rental definition (artIcle L.324-1 du code de tourisme)
Are considered as "holiday rentals", villas, apartments and furnished rooms that are rented by the day, week or month for a maximum of 12 weeks consecutively to an individual person.
Furnished bungalows and caravans
This activity is subject to the regulation about holiday rentals (Cour de cassation, ch. criminelle, 10 mai 2000). It is therefore required to provide descriptive statement before contracting.
« Arrhes » or « acompte »
To confirm the reservation, an amount is paid by the renter signing the contract (20 to 30% of total price). Ask that this sum is credited to the contract as "arrhes" and not as a "acompte".
A "acompte" is a binding commitment: even if you can not occupy the rental, you must pay the full price of the stay. "Arrhes" allow you to withdraw without having to pay the total price of stay. The amount of "arrhes" remains with the owner in compensation because he has to find a new renter with the risk of not finding. If the owner breaks the contract, he must pay to the renter the double amount of "arrhes". Additional compensation can possibly be claimed by the renter as a compensation for eventual damages (extra expenses, transport tickets , etc.).
Absence of a descriptive statement can be punished by a contravention of - 1,500 euros (article R.113-1 du code de la consommation) ;
Mismatch between the description and reality may be penalized as misleading advertising.
The holiday rental does not meet the standards of tourism or security: send to the prefect a letter with return receipt eight days after the beginning of your stay ;
Taking late possession of the holiday rental : the stay cannot be extended accordingly;
Early departure: no partial refunds will be due by the owner;
Account balances: the owner must repay the deposit, unless the inventory determines repairs to be made. In this case, the deposit may be returned within three months at the latest. The renter should require supporting documentation for costs attributed to him.
For further information, refer to the relevant legislation or contact the" Direction départementale de la protection des populations (DDPP)" or" Direction départementale de la cohésion sociale et de la protection des populations (DDCSPP)".