1/ The ideal rental is (almost) always managed by an agency
Who wouldn’t dream of the ideal place to live: a well-located, renovated, modern, bright apartment with a view, high ceilings and a terrace or a balcony if possible! It happens once in a million years, you might say: it is extremely hard to find but often a rental agency is the one that can help uncover that rare gem.
Your search for the dream apartment in Paris is all the more legitimate given that rents set by owners are unfortunately high, between €30 and €40 per square metre.
Against this backdrop, you must know that the majority of the 100,000 property owners that form the Parisian rental market use an agency to rent their property out. Moreover, most real estate investors renovate and refurbish their property before leaving it in the hands of a management agency. All rental agencies carefully select apartments in their portfolio and only accept the ones that offer the services sought by tenants. At Book-A-Flat for instance, all rented apartment are completely renovated and ready to live in for future tenants. For that matter, professional agencies systematically have high quality pictures taken for each room and offer a virtual tour. In doing so, it is possible to view the property in all its dimensions and notice any defects and strengths.
Conversely, apartments for rent in medium or poor condition will usually be found on owner/tenant rental platforms. Owners who are less conscientious than others regarding their apartment cleanliness are usually rejected by traditional rental agencies.
Finally, beware of the hundreds of fake ads on leboncoin. This type of scam needs to be reported when you notice a price that seems too attractive compared to the pictures. For this reason, using a rental agency gives you the reassurance of being offered a carefully selected apartment, shown in the ad. For example, the energy efficiency scorecard (DPE in French) should systematically appear on the apartment ad as well as the rental charges and the agency fee.
So, to start your apartment search on the right foot in Paris and have an overview of the rental market, we recommend that you visit the listing portal SeLoger / Logic Immo; it lists all rental offers from real estate agencies in Paris. Enter your search criteria and see how many apartments to rent are available in the Paris area or arrondissement where you’d like to live. If one ad in particular draws your attention, contact the agency by email or by phone or visit the agency’s website. You will usually receive a swift response from the rental agency which will ask you to provide some information to make sure that your income and security are enough to rent the apartment before arranging a viewing. You can also take this opportunity to ask for additional information about the apartment, such as its availability, co-ownership, etc.
These last few years, new rental agencies have emerged in Paris and have added rentals to their portfolio, especially high-end furnished apartments.