Written by Scarlett Murray,
8th March 2023

All French homeowners – including second homeowners and non-residents – must fill out a new tax declaration to determine how the property is being used. Here’s our guide on what you will need to fill out and why.  

French house

Don’t forget to fill out your Declaration d’Occupation.

As of this year, all French property owners must fill out a new tax declaration form – the Declaration d’Occupation. The form is trying to find out who occupies the property. The Declaration d’Occupation must be completed by all French property owners, including second homeowners and non-residents, even those that have not previously had to fill out tax declaration forms in France.

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What is the purpose of Declaration d’Occupation?

Recently, France have abolished the Taxe d’Habitation for all primary residences. The Taxe d’Habitation was similar to paying council tax in the UK. However, now, the French government only require that the Taxe d’Habitation be paid on secondary residences and vacant properties.

Therefore, the Declaration d’Occupation is designed to determine which homes are being used as main residences and which are secondary homes and vacant properties.

If forms fill you with dread, don’t worry, this is intended to be a one-off, and not a new yearly admin task. It is just for the French government to organise taxes after the changes to the rules following the partial end to the Taxe d’Habitation. 

Do I have to fill out the form?

Yes, it does not matter what kind of property you have in France – whether it is your main residence, second home, or an investment – you still must fill out the form. Even if you already know that you will not have to pay Taxe d’Habitation, as you have one property in France that you live in full-time, you still have to complete the form.

The only people who do not have to fill out this form are those that own a commercial or business property in France. This can include holiday homes, but only if you have a registered holiday home business, as opposed to casually renting out the property. If you are uncertain if your home falls into this category, it is best to contact the local tax office.

Not filling out the form will result in a €150 fine. The fine applies per property – so don’t forget to fill out the form for each one.

I don’t have an online French tax account…

woman typing at her laptop.

You can fill out the form online.

If you are a non-resident or a second homeowner, then you may not have a French tax account. Unfortunately, to complete the Declaration d’Occupation, you will need to make an account  admin, sigh! (Though I’m sure it’s worth it for stays in your pretty French house). If you have ever received a French tax notice before, then the numéro fiscal (French tax number) will be at the top of your bill. As well as this, you will need to provide personal details to create your online account:

  • your name, date, place of birth
  • email address
  • marital status
  • your overseas residence/postal address

What is the process?

If you are a property owner in France, you should have received an email detailing your legal obligation to fill out this form.

Easily enough, you can access the form online here. Helpful tip: if you’re struggling to navigate the page online in French, you can click at the top for a translation into English.  If you’d rather fill it out over the phone, then please call 0809 401 401. Alternatively, you can make a trip to your local tax office.

You will have to declare who was living in the property on 1st January 2023. You will need to fill out the form for each property in France that you own. The form must be submitted by 30th June 2023.

Once you have registered or logged in, you will see your properties listed. You will have the option to declare your property as a main residence, second home, holiday home or a vacant property. A vacant property is one that is currently unfurnished and unavailable to use. You will be required to confirm additional details, such as if there are any structures like a garage or a swimming pool. If any of these details are incorrect on the form, now is a good time to amend them.

After the form is completed, your property will be categorised and your taxes determined.

Buying a House in France Guide.

Buying a property in France is extremely exciting, but it can be nerve-wracking: in what ways is the process different to the UK, how do you cope with the language difference, what fees should you expect and just who is the notaire? That’s why we’ve put together our France Buying Guide, to help you through the process, step by step.

Written by experts, it covers every stage of buying, from viewing to contracts and fees. Get your copy of the French Property Guide by simply filling in the form below.

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