Renting a House or an Apartment

How to find and rent accommodation in Monaco - understand what to expect from the tenancy agreement when renting property in Monaco....

Many people choose to live in Monaco for financial and business reasons. Due to the extremely high cost of property in the Principality, a large percentage of the population live in rented accommodation. There is a wide range of property available.

Finding a Rental Property

Finding an apartment to let in Monaco is relatively easy as there are many apartment blocks in the Principality, many of which are for rent. However, it is quite rare to find a house or villa to rent.

Properties to let can be found by looking on the Principality's property website, Monte Carlo Real Estate or by contacting any of the estate agents operating within Monaco.

Rental property can also be found in the Angloinfo property classifieds.

Most properties are let unfurnished. There are however a small number of furnished apartments which are let with the white goods (fridge, oven, dish washer) and basic furniture.

Properties in Monaco are among the most expensive to rent and buy in the world.

The Lease Agreement

The lease agreement or tenancy contract stipulates terms and conditions of rental and rental rates, and is signed between the landlord or estate agent (on behalf of the lessor) and the lessee.

Leases in Monaco are usually for a minimum of one year. Unless a tenant is working in Monaco it is illegal to stay in the Principality for any more than three months unless application has been made for residency, or a carte de séjour. When applying for residency proof of accommodation must be shown. For tenants, this will be a rental lease of one year or more.

Short term lets - or seasonal lets - are available but normally just through holiday let companies. If they are sought through estate agents it is usual to pay an agency fee.

The lease agreement must include the following:

  • Owner's name and address and that of their agent (if relevant)
  • Date on which the contract starts
  • Duration of the contract
  • Rental amount
  • Method of payment
  • Amount of deposit
  • Type and description of accommodation (house, apartment, mixed dwelling/ number of rooms)

An inventory and condition report drawn up by the owner or agent must also be signed with a list of fittings, fixtures and their condition.

Documentation

  • An identity card or passport
  • A work contract or details of bank account which proves that the tenant has sufficient funds to cover the rent. It is obligatory to open a bank account when residing in Monaco; most banks require a hefty deposit of up to €300,000

Deposit

The average deposit is a three month deposit. This has to be made available to the owner or agent when the property is reserved, as well as three months rent in advance plus charges.

At the end of the tenancy and on receipt of the keys, the agent has two months in which to return the deposit, deducting any fees needed to repair the property.

Rental increase

The rent is raised - or lowered - annually at a rate based on the index of reference of rents published by the National Institute for Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE).

The Landlord's Obligation

Before the start of each tenancy, the property must be checked thoroughly to ensure that it is in a satisfactory condition. While no safety certificates are required by law, the owner or agent must ensure that the electrics and plumbing are in full working order.

The Tenant's Obligation

The tenant must:

  • Pay the rent in full by the agreed date
  • Pay the annual government tax
  • Pay service charges
  • Pay electricity and water charges
  • Ensure that the property is left in the same state it was in at the beginning of the tenancy

How to Terminate the Agreement

All leases are for a minimum of one year. Either party can terminate the agreement after the 12 month period is up, by sending a registered letter three months before the end of the lease date.

Otherwise, the lease will be renewed automatically.

Rental Costs

Before you sign your lease, there are other ongoing costs which should be considered alongside the deposit and rental costs.

Insurance

The tenant is required to take out household insurance which must be shown to the owner or agent when signing the lease.

Taxes

A tax of one per cent of the annual rent and one per cent of the service charge must be paid to the Government of Monaco every year. The initial demand is made through the agent or owner, and then sent directly to the tenant in subsequent years.

Service charges

A charge for all the services used communally in individual apartment buildings is collected annually or bi-annually by the agent. The figure varies dependant on the building, although the service charge in most cases is between 10 and 15 percent of the monthly rent. In some cases, this includes water charges. Where it does not, a separate water charge is added.

Agents' fees

These fees are normally set at ten percent of the rent plus VAT, which is paid as a one off fee to the agent at the beginning of the tenancy.

Further Information