A tenant may run his/her business from a residential rental and the landlord cannot prevent him/her to do so, providing that:
Seasonal lettings are lettings of furnished or unfurnished housing for the maximum duration of a season (e.g. three months).
As their object is not the tenant’s main residence, seasonal lettings are only governed by the provisions of the French civil code.
However, the law of 2000 (decent housing) and of 20th July 2003 (information on natural and technological risks) apply.
As mentioned before, the law of 6th July 1989 proclaims that the right to a place to live (droit au logement) is essential. As such, the enforcement of the lease is difficult. Indeed, even with a legal title such as a court order, it can be difficult in practice for a landlord to obtain possession of his property even if the lease is legally terminated. This is especially the case when the tenant is having difficulties with relocating.
The unfurnished property is governed by the law of 6th July 1989 which was officially designed to protect tenants (who are entitled to a right to a place to live “droit au logement”). This tendency is still in force as this has been confirmed by the recent laws.
The law of 6th July 1989 applies to unfurnished housing rented as a main residence. Furnished lettings, seasonal lettings and secondary residence lettings are then excluded. The main provisions of the law of 6th July 1989 can be summarised as follows.
Looking for a place to rent
There are different ways for searching a place to rent in France. Internet is a good option as there are a substantial number of properties being advertised via it. The largest French site are http://www.seloger.com/, http://www.explorimmo.com/, and even http://www.pap.fr/ (for those who prefer to deal directly with the property owner).
Whether you envisage only a temporary stay in France or plan to settle for a long period, it is advisable to rent in the beginning rather than purchase as it gives you the time needed to familiarise yourself with an area and its amenities, and to ensure that it does suit you and your family before making a significant investment.
There are two main legal stages involved in your sale, the first contract (ie: compromis de vente or promesse de vente) and the actual transfer of title, which takes place on signature of the Acte de Vente.
Like as purchasing a property in France, it is advisable to retain the services of a bilingual French lawyer in order to assist you in the process of selling you French property.
General information regarding the French legal system
In any purchase of a property in France, consideration must be given at an early stage as there are a number of important issues to take into account such as who is going to purchase the property (you alone? or jointly with your spouse? or though a company? etc.), general and inheritance tax projections, the source of the funds, French inheritance laws, etc.