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Apartment exchange between neighbors

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It is a little-known provision, but authorized by law, which allows two tenants of the same building, or of the same group of buildings, to exchange their homes.

For example, if your family grows with the arrival of a new child or those of your new spouse, and you find yourself cramped in your T2.

And that at the same time, your neighbors upstairs whose children have left the family nest, find themselves alone in a T5, or that they no longer manage to pay their rent.

You will be able, under certain conditions, to exchange your apartments.

What are these conditions?

This provision is provided for in article 9 of law n ° 89-462 of July 6, 1989.

The exchange will be possible if:

  • The 2 dwellings belong to the same one, the same owner and the same building complex
  • One of the families concerned has at least 3 dependent children
  • The exchange increases the living space of the larger family.

And this does not matter whether they are in the private sector or in low-cost housing.

It is the hypothesis where a couple occupies a 100 m2 and that a family of 6 people on the floor above has only one accommodation of 50 m2. These two tenants living in the same housing complex and having the same owner will be able to exchange their homes.

According to the law, this exchange is of right if the conditions are met, but it is advisable to inform the lessor.

There will be a transfer of the lease contract.

What are the legal effects of a lease transfer?

Legally it is a tenant substitution.

It means that :

  • Each tenant executes the lease contract attached to the new apartment, as entered into by the former occupants. Including the clauses and all the provisions attached to the lease until it ends.

Assumption: If the former tenant had undertaken to do work, the new one will have to carry it out. Hence the importance of being well informed about the new rights and obligations involved in the transfer.

  • Each tenant "cannot be considered as a new entrant". The owner cannot therefore take advantage of this transfer to modify the lease (increase in rents, new guarantees, etc.).
  • The security deposit will not be returned or changed.

It is therefore up to the tenants to provide between them a financial agreement to pay the difference between the security deposits.

  • The deposits will not be interchanged.

The people who have acted as surety will remain committed for the accommodation to which they have provided their guarantee.

Note: This exchange is not authorized for furnished accommodation and those concluded under the 1948 law.

The exchange may be imposed on the lessor if the 3 legal cumulative conditions are met. Otherwise, the lessor can always give its agreement.

If the exchange takes place without his consent and without having fulfilled the legal conditions, the lessor may reserve the right to terminate the lease.

For low-rent housing, housing is allocated in particular according to the income of the tenants. If it turns out that the rent for a larger home was too high in relation to a family's income, the landlord could legitimately oppose the exchange.

HLMs will be able to impose such transfers of social housing for better management of the rental stock.

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  1. Hello
    In the event that the 2 families have 3 children, exactly the same family composition (a family with 2 boys and 1 girl wishes to move into the larger accommodation of the other family (T5 103m²); and a family with 3 boys wishes to move in in the smaller accommodation (T3 71m²) to save rent (200 € difference), what happens?
    Which family can be considered "the most numerous"? Is it either one or the other? Neither of the two ?
    Can the RIGHT exchange still take place?
    Thank you!

  2. I would like to leave my type F5 pavilion for an F3 type with a disability I would like a ground floor garden or terrace on Mont Valérien 92000 Nanterre

    1. Hello, I am exchanging my new f4 type accommodation to the new disabled standards.
      90 m2 3 bedrooms including a master suite, a balcony for the three bedrooms. Two bathrooms, two toilets, in Nanterre city on the old coast of Nanterre
      Rent 545 + 280 water and heating charges.
      Thank you and good research

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