France - House Rentals
You can rent through an agency or directly from a landlord. If you rent through the agency you will have to pay a fee (honoraries) to cover the agency's costs of finding accommodation and administration. The fee is about two months' rent.
You will have to sign a lease (bail) for the duration of the rental period. The lease is a written contract generally a ready-to-use printed document, and established for a lease period of three years.
If you want to terminate the agreement before the end of the lease period, you have to give a three months' notice. The notice period can be one month if you are transferred for work reasons or if you lose your job.
An inventory is drawn up. It describes the state of the property, listing any damage. This inventory will be done when you move into the property and when you move out. The document must be signed by both parties to make it valid.
Don't pay anything until you have the lease signed and then pay by cheque and ask for a signed and dated receipt (quittance de loyer).
Make sure the monthly rent includes all charges and nothing is quoted separately.