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Housing benefits and rent guarantor schemes
CAF housing benefits
Depending on your personal situation and the type of housing you find, you may be entitled to a housing benefit from the Caisse d’Allocation familiales (CAF). You can apply for a benefit whether you live in an unfurnished or furnished flat, home-stay, or student hall of residence.
To be eligible:
- The accommodation must correspond to decent housing standards (Act of 13/12/2000) and have a minimum floor area of 9 m2;
- The tenancy agreement or joint tenancy agreement must be in your name, or that of your legal guardian if you are a minor, and must be for over three months;
- Students from outside the European Economic Area must hold a student long-stay visa (known as the VLS-TS) and a residence permit or the OFII stamp.
For an estimate of your benefit entitlement please visit the CAF website (fr.).
You should apply online for a CAF housing benefit as soon as you have a signed tenancy agreement. You will need the following information and documents:
- An email address you check regularly
- The lease or tenancy agreement
- Your income amounts for the last two years
- Your bank details (BIC/IBAN format)
- The contact details of your lessor (landlord, agency, etc.), the rent amount and their 14-digit Siret number if your lessor is a company.
You should expect it to take about a month for your application to be processed.
For more information, go to the Caf website (fr.) and read the Caf guide that applies to your situation:
- You live in Crous run accommodation (PDF in French, 817 Ko)
- You live in a university residence not run by the Crous (PDF in French, 687 Ko
- You live in privately-owned housing (PDF in French, 725 Ko)
Please note: If you are under 25 and your parents have been receiving benefits for you (family benefits or housing benefits), you will no longer be taken into account when those benefits are calculated.
In Paris: student financial aid (A.I.L.E)
This lump-sum benefit of €900 is financed by the Paris City Council and managed by the CROUS. It is exclusively for students receiving the Crous needs-based financial aid and enrolled in a higher education institution in the Paris region. It can only be paid out once in a given academic year.
You are not entitled to this benefit if you live in a Crous residence.
Rent guarantor schemes
Loca-Pass advance (Action Logement)
The Loca-Pass advance is a loan offered to tenants to finance the security deposit required by the lessor. The loan is interest-free and no handling fees are charged.
To benefit, you must have:
- a current fixed-term contract (CDD) of at least three months’ duration when you apply for the loan;
- one or more fixed-term contracts for a cumulative period of at least three months over the six months preceding the loan request;
- or a current internship agreement of at least three months’ duration when you apply;
- or French government scholarship status.
The advance is for a maximum of 1,200 euros.
Visale is a scheme set up by Action Logement, a leading stakeholder in social housing in France with the core mission of facilitating access to housing.
Through the Visale scheme, Action Logement undertakes to act as a guarantor free of charge for those who meet their eligibility criteria.
To be eligible, you must:
- be under 30 years old;
- provide proof of enrolment at a post-secondary institution for the current academic year;
- receive a Crous scholarship and have either a definitive or provisional notification of your scholarship;
- if you do not have a Crous scholarship, you must be independent for tax purposes and provide proof of a (N-1 or N-2) notice of assessment or an income tax return in your name;
- have a French scholarship or be independent for tax purposes in France if you are an international student.
Action Logement will accept to act as guarantor for eligible students without proof of income for a maximum rent of €425. Otherwise, the maximum rent amount is equivalent to 50% of the student’s total income up to a limit of 1,500 euros/month in Paris and 1,300 euros/month elsewhere in France.
More about Students
Contact the housing service
9 rue de la Chaise - 75007 Paris - garden level
Opening hours (no appointment necessary):
- Monday to Wednesday, 9.30am to 12 noon and 1.30pm to 4pm
- Friday, 9.30am to 12 noon
From May to October:
- Monday to Thursday, 9.30am to 4pm
- Friday, 9.30am to 12 noon