Secondary residence: what you need to know about taxation

real estate taxation

About one in ten French people owns a second home, and this trend should increase over the next few years. Owning a second home offers the possibility of enjoying more natural environments elsewhere, while technically being “at home”. However, before embarking on the purchase of a second home, it is crucial to understand the taxation that applies to this type of property.

secondary residence taxation

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The amounts to be paid depend on the cadastral value of the house and the rates determined annually by the town halls. It is compulsory, even for people who are exempt from it for their main residences.

For these, we are witnessing a gradual abolition of the housing tax. This means that only two out of ten households continue to pay it for their main residences.

The sums to be paid for housing taxes for pied-à-terre for a second home differ from those for usual residential accommodation. Generally, their taxation is a little higher than that which applies to principal residences.

This state of affairs is due to the fact that with the pied-à-terre, it is not possible to benefit from tax reductions in relation to the situation of your household (number of dependent children, income, etc. ). In fact, there is essentially only one remarkable tax, which concerns principal residences, but not those which are occasional.

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Note the tax differences between cities

Many French cities subject second homes to an increase in their housing tax.

This is particularly the case of those who apply a tax on vacant housing. These are generally cities with more than 50 inhabitants and within which there is a real gap between housing needs and supply.

If, at the base, this increase in the tax was identical at the level of all the cities (+20%), for a few years, it is up to each local authority to determine it. From now on, this surcharge can increase the initial cost of the housing tax of a pied-à-terre by 5 to 60%.

However, in certain situations, it is possible to be exempted from this residential surcharge. This is especially the case when the secondary residence is used for a purely professional purpose or when its rental vacancy is beyond your control.

Calculate property tax and household waste collection tax

If you own occasional accommodation, you also have the obligation to pay two additional taxes.

Secondary residence tax

Property tax for a second home

This is a local property tax, the amount of which depends on the cadastral value of the accommodation. The latter is fixed on the basis of an estimate of the rent that can be received annually by the owner of the property, if he decides to rent it out.

However, in certain circumstances, it is possible to take advantage of an exemption from property tax on your occasional accommodation. This is the case when it is a new home or when you are over 75 and have a fairly low income.

 The household waste collection tax

It is up to each local authority to ensure the effective management of household waste on its territory. This generates expenses that each of them subsequently recovers, through the payment of the TEOM once a year.

Even in the event of temporary exemptions from property tax, payment of the TEOM can still be claimed from you.

As for the value of this tax, it depends on the rates that each local authority chooses to set. This is what essentially justifies the great disparities that can exist from one municipality to another, regarding the amount of their TEOM.

As regards the possibilities of exemptions from this tax, they are quite limited. In the case of a secondary residence, you can be exempted from it, only if the garbage collection service is not provided in your area.

The tax on secondary residences of non-residents

If you do not live in France, but you have a secondary residence in the country, since 2012 you are subject to the payment of a special tax: the tax on secondary residences of non-residents.

It must be paid annually and it aims to make all non-resident owners contribute to the payment of public services offered by the State to the population. As for the amount of this tax, it amounts to 20% of the cadastral rental value of the secondary residence.

Thus, when you own a secondary residence in France, you may be called upon to pay:

  • the TEOM
  • tax on secondary residences of non-residents
  • property tax and housing tax


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