Overseas Chambers of Peter Harris

Overseas Chambers
c/o Addington Chambers
160, Fleet Street,
London EC4A 2DQ,
United Kingdom

Fellow of the European Law Institute Vienna
Barrister at Law - Regulated by
the Bar Standards Board
Bar Mututal insurance: 8015/009

French secondary home owners: rumours of the demise of the French taxe d'habitation may be greatly exaggerated

April 20th 2023

I wrote in February warning individuals who own secondary residences in France about the declarative changes relating to the ownership of French secondary residences this year - usufructuaries included. the taxe d'habitation (occupier's rate) has only been repealed for principal residences, not for secondary residences.

There has been a substantial change in the declaration requirements by owners (including usufruitiers) for French properties owned as secondary residences or rented out. The definition includes licenses, commodats etc.

The law now reads : "Owners of residential properties are required to file with the tax administration before the 1st July of each year, if they have kept the legal possession and enjoyment (jouissance) the information concerning the occupation of these premises, or if these are occupied by third parties, the identity of the occupiers of the said premises according to the procedure laid down by decree."

Many non-resident owners believe that the taxe d'habitation (occupier's rate) has been totally repealed in some manner. This is not the case at all - only principal residences in France are affected by the recent exemption (dégrèvement).

Whilst it relates to the taxe d'habitation, the owner of the residential property has to declare the user of the property by internet by midnight 30th June, 2023.

If you are a non-resident or French taxpayer who already has an "espace particulier" through impots.gouv.fr, the French administration has published a press release guiding you through the procedure to make a declaration on line using your espace . This is not,however, the implementing decree which will need to be published before 30th June to render the declarative process and non-compliance penalties fully enforceable. I would not advise banking on that fast and loose option.


The declaration of occupancy and user has to be filed by midnight 30th June 2023,which leave only two and a half months in which to comply by filling the declaration.

Those who do not yet have such an espace particulier facility available will need to acquire and set up an espace particulier on the impots.gouv.fr website. That requires the fiscal number alloctad to you personaly. If you have paid either the taxe d'habitation (occupers rate) or l'impôt foncier (owner's rate) that number will be on your avis d'impostion under the heading "vos références", "numéro fiscal" which is 13 digits formatted  xx xx xxx xxx xxx. It is not the "référence de l'avis" formatted xx xx xxxxxxx xx,  or the Numéro de Propriétaire which contains letters.  Once you have obtained your thirteen digit fiscal reference number either from the avis or from the tax office of the property you own, it is relatively straightforward to register and to set up. There is an Engish language option available on the "espace". The numéro fiscl is unique to you. You do not need a social security nuimber forf this process.

So you should check your prior taxe d'habitation notifications to see your Fiscal Identification Number which will already have been allocated to you throuygh te ownerhsip of your property

Please see the resources page for further details as to the evolution into the current situation and the position on the declarations (link here). If this is too detailed an explanation, contact me if you need further clarification on either (01534) 625879 or on + 33 (0)9 87 37 14 55.