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Taxe de Séjour: What’s new for 2019?

In recent months there have been major changes to the rules on the taxe de séjour, and there are more to come in 2019. This article will summarise the situation and tell you of the planned changes from January 2019.

This is the second article we have produced about recent changes to the taxe de séjour. For more detailed information on the original changes to the taxe de séjour put in place from June 2018 please read our first post here.

The current situation 

Background

Guests are usually asked to pay the taxe de séjour (TDS) to the owners of their holiday accommodation at the beginning of their stay. It is then passed on to the communities and used by councils to offset the costs of tourism: investments to improve the quality of services offered, developing facilities and protecting natural spaces.

In 2018, there were several changes to this tax. At the end of 2017, the government voted for several measures to improve regulation of the seasonal rental business. This was an area that had seen rapid expansion, with the development of sites such as Airbnb.

What changed?

Communities were allowed to set their own TDS rates. This meant that, after several years of relative stability, the tariffs were raised in most areas for classified and unclassified properties. Municipalities had to vote for a new fee schedule and a percentage applicable from 2019 (between 1 and 5% of the rental price) for the recalculation of tax on unclassified accommodation by 1/10/2018. More about that later.

To make the declaration and payment of tax easier, many municipalities set up online platforms, where all the steps are explained to the owner, who can set up their own account. Then it’s just a matter of declaring the amount collected per month and paying it online. Since last July, a monthly reminder is sent to the owner, asking them to declare the tax due.

It’s worth noting that not all mairies have set up these sites – some still use paper declaration forms with payment at the mairie or by post.
In anticipation of this, Airbnb rolled out the automatic collection of TDS on its site in the majority of communes from July 1, 2018.

You can read an article about the rise in tariffs and other changes here.

In the context of the *Projets de Loi des finances (PLF) rectificative 2017 and PLF 2018, two changes were agreed, to be implemented from January 2019: the new proportional calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties, and the collection by digital payment agencies.

*Réf. (Projet de loi de finances rectificative 2017, examiné en première lecture par l’Assemblée nationale du 4 au 8/12/17 : https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/affichTexte.do?cidTexte=JORFTEXT000036298548

Taxe de séjour Morzine winter

Planned changes for 2019

These two measures will take effect from January 1, 2019, and will impact hosts with non-classified properties. In effect, the finance acts 2017-18 quoted above asked territories to agree by October 1, 2018 the tax percentage applicable to non-classified properties and to submit a new tariff schedule. So what can you expect?

The situation for classified furnished properties

For holiday rental properties with official classifications (between 1 and 5 stars), the situation will not change in 2019. The rates of TDS are fixed, according to the number of stars. They depend on the tariff schedule applied by each commune (or collective) that was decided before October 1, 2018. In practice, most communes anticipated and agreed their rates far in advance of this date, such as the Aravis, which implemented the rise in June 2018.

At the end of this article, you will find all the useful links and contacts for mairies or organisations tasked with collecting the TDS.

The situation for unclassified furnished properties

If your property is not classified, please read the following information carefully.

Until now, the tariff for a non-classified rental property was a fixed amount. In the Aravis, for example, the sum for 2018 was 0.80€ per adult per day. However, from January 1 2019, the calculations will be completely different.

What is going to change?

It is based on the introduction of a percentage, and no longer on a fixed sum. For all properties awaiting classification, or non-classified, the tariff per person, per day will be between 1 and 5% of the rental cost per adult per night, up to the community’s maximum rate, or, if it is less than the former, to the ceiling of the tariff applicable to 4* tourist hotels (which is 2.30€ in most of our destinations).

Sum to be collected for NON-CLASSIFIED properties

=

The number of people subject to the TDS and not exempt

X

Number of nights

X

Variable tariff* (between 1 and 5%)  of the TDS

*The variable tariff is between  1 et 5% of the cost without tax (1) per person per night (1) up to 2,30€.

(1) The cost before tax per person per night = The total cost of the property for the stay/ number of nights

/ number of occupants

Here is an example of the documents sent by the mairie to the owner of a non-classified property in Manigod (exists in French only):
Manigod taxe de séjour info
This long and complicated calculation will really affect non-classified properties. If you think about the rental tariff for most properties, you will realise that they vary from month to month. This well mean a fair bit of mental gymnastics for the owners.
Note: Each commune agreed the percentage for that area prior to October 1. They can therefore vary from one area to another.*

In practice, there is an easy way to avoid this problem: get your property an official classification.

As well as a more favourable rate of tax and a recognition of the quality of your property, this will make declaring and paying the tax much easier. If your property is not classified, we invite you to contact the local classification agency, should you know it, or your local mairie, where you can find out who to contact.

In the Aravis, for example, SIMA** manages the classification of all the massif communes. Soon, an article will appear advising you of all the advantages of classification.
*The percentages are listed commune by commune at the end of this article.  
** SIMA : Syndicat Intercommunal du Massif des Aravis

Collection of the tax by digital agencies

OTA logos Taxe de séjour
The second major change concerns the general collection of the tax by intermediary digital payment operators from January 1, 2019. By this, we mean the payment platforms that collect the payment for rental properties before passing it on to the owners such as Airbnb.

The situation of these platforms in 2018

Airbnb didn’t wait until January 2019 to set up this facility. Collection on its website has been common in France since July 1, 2018. Currently, Airbnb collects the tax when the reservation fee is paid, applying the basic sum according to the territory concerned. For example, this would be 0.80€ in the Aravis. However, at the moment this doesn’t take into account the age of the guests or the classification of the property.

HomeAway and Trip Advisor did not collect the tax in 2018.

Booking.com: a special case.  In autumn 2018, the site offered OVO Network the following option: indicate the rates of TDS (including those for classified properties) and it can be collected directly by including it in the rental price. However, the site does not take into account the age of the guests, which can often mean an overpayment at the point of reservation.  It is then up to the owner to declare and hand over to the commune. Please note that this facility is optional. Owners who choose not to opt for this system of collection can manage the collection of the TDS from their Booking.com clients and the payment of it to the commune.

From January 2019

From January 1, 2019, all the platforms must collect the TDS automatically, and pay it to the communes. This implies that these operators must, by law, take into account all the rates, those of classified and non-classified properties and the new proportional calculation. The owners of classified properties will no longer have to pay the difference, as they have had to do until now. However, they will still have to declare every guest staying at their property.

Airbnb which has been collecting the tax for several months, will have to apply all the sums and hand them directly to the communes as the law dictates, from January 1, 2019.

Trip Advisor will be in the same situation.

Booking.com will remain in the same situation as 2018 (see above).

HomeAway will have to adopt the same system as Booking.com in 2018.

That is that all the rates should be shown correctly and collected directly. The TDS will therefore be calculated included in the reservation amount from January 2019.

In actual fact, at the time of writing we do not know if all the platforms will apply these measures from January 1, 2019.

The law requires them to do this, but in practice, it will not be easy to set up, and there is no guarantee that the law will be enforced. We will be monitoring the situation and will keep you informed of any developments.

However, the best contacts on these issues will always be your mairie or the communities responsible for the TDS. Don’t hesitate to contact them if you have any questions or comments.

Penalties for non-declaration of the taxe de séjour

Last November, as part of the Projet de Loi 2019, the deputies adopted an amendment* reinforcing penalties for Airbnb-style rental platforms and for owners who do not declare  and pay the taxe de sejour.

These penalties will be applied in the case of non-declaration, incorrect declaration, non-collection of the TDS or non-payment of the amount collected to the communities within the given deadline. It is likely that the “omissions or inaccuracies” found in the declaration of a rental will face a fine of “150€ per omission or inaccuracy”, up to a limit of 12,500€ per declaration. This applies to the platforms as well as to the owners.
*Refs: amendments n°1995 and n°1994 to article 56, in the Finance Bill 2019.
For a complete article on this subject, click here (only exists in French).

Don’t forget to register!

One thing not to overlook as an owner is the registration. Anyone renting out furnished or B&B accommodation must by law declare their business at the mairie. This can be done by the CERFA forms or by the DECLALOC system (few mairies have this system available) which allows you to register online. However you register, you will be given a number, which you should make a note of. You will be asked for this when you advertise on rental websites (Airbnb, Booking.com, but also sites like Le Bon Coin).

TDS La Clusaz Night

Focus destinations

Before October 1, 2018, every commune agreed a percentage for calculating the tax on non-classified properties, applicable from January 1, 2018.

You will find these rates below, along with all the details for each destination. We have also included the contact details for the mairies or the collection organisations as well as links to their online declaration sites.

Alpes du Nord

Le Grand Annecy

Annecy and surrounding area
Online declaration:

https://grandannecy.taxesejour.fr

+33 (0)4 56 49 40 30
grandannecy@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5%
La Clusaz
Online declaration:

https://laclusaz.taxesejour.fr/

+33 (0)4 50 32 65 20
laclusaz@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5%
Le Grand BornandOnline declaration:

https://legrandbornand.taxesejour.fr/

+33 (0)4 50 02 78 32
legrandbornand@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5%
ManigodOnline declaration:

https://manigod.taxesejour.fr/

+33 (0)4 50 44 89 05
manigod@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5%
Saint-Jean-de-SixtOnline declaration:

https://saintjeandesixt.taxesejour.fr/

+33 (0)4 50 02 24 12
saintjeandesixt@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5%

SIMA, which covers all municipalities, has produced a leaflet, with all the updates on the taxe de sejour. Find it here.
ValmorelOnline declaration:

https://ccvasavoie.taxesejour.fr/

+33 (0)4 79 24 20 04
ccvasavoie@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5% + the additional department tax of 10% for the benefit of the Conseil Départemental de la Savoie
CordonNo online declaration

Mairie de Cordon
+33 (0)4 50 58 04 17
mairie@cordon.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5%
ThônesNo online declaration

more info

+33 (0)4 50 02 99 78
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 2%
La GiettazNo online declaration
(this should be available by spring 2019)

https://www.valdarly-montblanc.com/

+33 (0)4 79 32 91 90
info@la-giettaz.com
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 3%
Saint-Genis-PouillyNo online declaration

http://www.saint-genis-pouilly.fr/

Contact: 04 50 20 52 61

adubout@saint-genis-pouilly.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5% + the additional department tax of 10% for the benefit of the Conseil Départemental de l’Ain

Sud de la France

CotignacOnline declaration:

https://provenceverte.taxesejour.fr/

+33 (0)4 98 05 12 22
provenceverte@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 1% + the additional department tax of 10% for the benefit of the Conseil Départemental du Var
AlbonOnline declaration:

https://portededromardeche.taxesejour.fr

+33 (0)4 75 23 44 19
portededromardeche@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 4% + the additional department tax of 10% for the benefit of the Conseil Départemental de la Drôme et de l’Ardèche
LacanauOnline declaration:

https://medocatlantique.taxesejour.fr/

+33 (0)5 57 17 00 97
+33 (0)5 56 73 29 38
medocatlantique@taxesejour.fr
Percentage agreed for the new calculation of the TDS for non-classified properties: 5% + the additional department tax of 10% for the benefit of the Conseil Départemental de la Gironde

There could be more changes, depending on what the legislator decides to do about the taxe de sejour. It is likely that the way of calculating the tax will change again, given the complexity of the situation in 2019 and the discriminatory difference between classified and non-classified properties.

For the moment, we do not have any precise information. It is nevertheless, important to monitor the situation with the TDS.

It’s worth remembering that in the current situation, the new proportionate calculation does not favour the owners of non-classified properties.

If this applies to you, we strongly recommend that you consider the classification process.

This article will be updated as regularly as possible.