SHARE
COPY LINK
For members

PROPERTY

EXPLAINED: How to access France’s €20k property renovation grants

The French government has extended the renovating initiative MaPrimeRenov’ to make it available to all home owners, including for second homes, for grants of up to €20,000. Here's how to go about applying for the scheme.

EXPLAINED: How to access France's €20k property renovation grants
Illustration photo: AFP

What is it?

Launched back in January 2020, the government scheme MaPrimeRenov’ lets homeowners apply for financial help to renovate their homes.

Each household can get up to €20,000 to renovate, although the amount will depend on several factors, including the type of project, the household income and the number of people living there.

Previously reserved for modest-income households, the scheme has been expanded and is now available to everyone, including high-income owners, landlords renting out their property and second home owners. 

Applicants do however need a French numéro fiscal (tax number) and a copy of their latest tax declaration, which means those who do not file the annual tax declaration in France are effectively excluded

What kind of work is covered by the scheme?

The grant scheme covers four main categories of renovating work:

  • Heating (so changing the heater, for example, or installing a new system)
  • Insulation
  • Ventilation
  • Energy audits

However the company hired to renovate must be on the government-approved list of companies that qualify for the grant, which means they need the label RGE (Reconnue Garant de l’Environnement).

Who can access the grant scheme?

Only property owners can access the scheme, so not those renting.

The building needs to be more than 2 years old.

For several months only lower-income owners could benefit from the scheme, but from July has been open to everyone.

At first the scheme was closed to second home owners, but a government decree published on January 26th confirmed that it had been widened to include anyone “with a legal right to the property”.

That includes co-owners, second home owners and landlords who rent out their property.

Why is the government doing this?

France’s economy has been reeling since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country with full force in March 2020, prompting several months of lockdown and economic downturn.

Of the government’s enormous €100 billion rescue package, €2 billion was earmarked for households.

The goal, as stated in the French government’s relaunch plan, is to stimulate the economy while transforming households into more environmentally friendly, less energy-hungry entities.

READ ALSO From taxes to toilets: All you need to know about renovating a house in France

Income thresholds

To determine whether or not a project is eligible for the grant scheme and how much money the household gets, the government checks the total income of the household against the cost of the renovating project.

The income thresholds for households depend on the kind of services needed, outlined in four different MaPrimeRénov’ schemes: blue, yellow, violet or pink (full list HERE).

While MaPrimeRénovBleu (blue) is typically restricted to modest-income households, the maximum income thresholds also depend on the number of people living in the property and whether or not it is located in greater Paris Île-de-France region. 

Below you can see the income thresholds for households outside the Paris region:

Photo: French government

And here is a photo showing the income thresholds for those inside the Paris region:

Photo: French government

If you want to check if your project is eligible for the grant scheme, the government website Faire has a Simul’Aid simulator available here.

How do I apply?

To apply for a grant, you must create an account on maprimerenov.gouv.fr and connect to that account. In order to do this you will need a numéro fiscal, the number you use for filling out your tax returns, plus other documents you use when filing your taxes (bank details – both French and international banks work – copy of your ID, etc).

You will be asked to provide:

  • A copy of your latest tax return
  • An email address and a phone number
  • Names and dates of birth of all members of the household
  • A dévis (builders’ invoice) for the work done
  • The amount of any other help schemes or grants the household benefits from
  • Co-owner households must provide an attestation signed by all parties as well as information regarding the number of households in the home.

Only work done after October 1st, 2020 is accepted (so applicants need a dévis signed after that date). 

A detailed guide to each step of the process can be found at maprimerenov.gouv.fr under the section “Me renseigner”.

READ ALSO: How to convert a rustic barn into your dream home

Where can I get more information?

For more information and to access the grant, go to MaPrimeRénov’. You can also call +33 (0) 8 08 800 700 if you have specific questions on the scheme.

If you want to search for a government approved renovating company in your area, go to this website, tap in your postcode and type of work you want done and hit search.

 
 

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.
For members

PROPERTY

Plumbing Emergencies in France: Who to call and what to say

Plumbing ermergencies are common in France, so here's our guide to what to do, who to call and the phrases you will need if water starts gushing in unexpected areas.

Plumbing Emergencies in France: Who to call and what to say

How do I find a reliable plumber and avoid getting scammed?

First, try to stick with word-of-mouth if you can. Contact trusted individuals or resources, like your neighbours and friends, or foreigner-oriented Facebook groups for your area (ex. “American Expats in Paris”). This will help you find a more reliable plumber. If this is not an option for you, try “Pages Jaunes” (France’s ‘Yellow Pages’) to see reviews and plumbers (plomberie) in your area. 

Next, educate yourself on standard rates. If the situation is not an emergency, try to compare multiple plumbers to make sure the prices are in the correct range. 

Finally, always Google the name of the plumber you’ll be working with – this will help inform you as to whether anyone else has had a particularly positive (or negative) experience with them – and check that the company has a SIRET number.

This number should be on the work estimate (devis). You can also check them out online at societe.com. If you want to be extra careful you can also ask to see their carte artisan BTP (craftsman card). 

READ MORE: What is a SIRET number and why is it crucial when hiring French tradesmen?

Who is responsible for paying for work?

If you own the property, you are typically the one who is responsible for financing the plumbing expenses.

However if you’re in a shared building, you must determine the cause and location of the leak. If you cannot find the origin of the leak, you may need a plumber to come and locate it and provide you with an estimate. You can use this estimate when communicating with insurance, should the necessity arise. 

If you are a renter, the situation is a bit more complicated. Most of the time, water damage should be the landlord’s responsibility, but there are exceptions.

The landlord is obliged to carry out major repairs (ex. Natural disaster, serious plumbing issues) that are necessary for the maintenance and normal upkeep of the rented premises (as per, Article 6C of the law of July 6, 1989). The tenant, however, is expected to carry out routine maintenance, and minor repairs are also to be paid by the tenant. If the problem is the result of the tenant failing to maintain the property, then it will be the tenant’s responsibility to cover the cost of the repair.

Legally speaking, it is also the tenant’s responsibility to get the boiler serviced once a year, as well as to maintain the faucets and joints, and to avoid clogging the pipes.

READ MORE: Assurance habitation: How to get home insurance in France

If you end up in dispute with your landlord over costs, you can always reach out to ADIL, the national Housing Association which offers free legal advice for housing issues in France. 

What happens if the leak is coming from my neighbour’s property?

Both you and your neighbour should contact your respective housing insurance companies and file the ‘sinistre’ (damage) with them.

If you both agree on the facts you can file an amiable (in a friendly fashion), then matters are much more simple and you will not have to go through the back-and-forth of determining fault.

If having a friendly process is not possible, be sure to get an expert to assert where the leak is coming from and file this with your insurance company.

As always, keep evidence (lists and photographs) of the damage. Keep in mind that many insurance providers have a limited number of days after the start of the damage that you can file. Better to do it sooner than later, partially because, as with most administrative processes in France, it might take a bit of time.

Vocab

Plumbing has its own technical vocabulary so here are some words and phrases that you’re likely to need;

Hello, I have a leak in my home. I would like to request that a plumber come to give me an estimate of the damage and cost for repairs – Bonjour, j’ai une fuite chez moi. Je voudrais demander qu’un plombier vienne me donner une estimation des dégâts et du coût de la réparation. 

It is an emergency: C’est une urgence

I have no hot water: Je n’ai pas d’eau chaude

The boiler has stopped working: La chaudière ne fonctionne plus.

I cannot turn my tap off: Je ne peux pas arrêter le robinet.

The toilet is leaking: Mes toilettes fuient.

The toilet won’t flush/ is clogged: Mes toilettes sont bouchées

There is a bad smell coming from my septic tank: Il y a un mauvaise odeur provenant de ma fosse septique

I would like to get my electricity / boiler safety checked: Je souhaiterais une vérification de la sécurité de mon installation électrique / de ma chaudière

I can smell gas: Ca sent le gaz

My washing machine has broken: Ma machine a laver est cassée

Can you come immediately? Est-ce que vous pouvez venir tout de suite?

When can you come? Quand est-ce que vous pouvez venir?

How long will it take? Combien de temps cela prendra-t-il ?

How much do you charge? Quels sont vos prix? / Comment cela va-t-il coûter?

How can I pay you? Comment je peux vous payer ? 

Here are the key French vocabulary words for all things plumbing-related:

Dishwasher – Lave vaisselle

Bath – Baignoire

Shower – Douche

Kitchen Sink – Évier

Cupboard – Placard

Water meter – Compteur d’eau

The Septic Tank – La fosse septique

A leak – Une fuite

Bathroom sink – Le lavabo

The toilet – La toilette

Clogged – Bouché

To overflow – Déborder

A bad smell – Une mauvaise odeur

The flexible rotating tool used to unclog a pipe (and also the word for ferret in French) – Furet 

Water damage – Dégât des eaux

The damage – Le sinistre

And finally, do you know the French phrase Sourire du plombier? No, it’s not a cheerful plumber, it’s the phrase used in French for when a man bends down and his trouser waistband falls down, revealing either his underwear or the top of his buttocks. In Ebglish it’s builder’s bum, in French ‘plumber’s smile’.

SHOW COMMENTS