Could you benefit from France’s zero interest housing loans?

Find out more on who is eligible to receive zero interest loans under the French government’s PTZ system, which allows recipients to pay back only the capital spent to buy or renovate a home.   

The prêt à taux zero (PTZ) scheme set up by the French government to give people living in certain communities the opportunity to receive housing or improvement loans at zero interest was set to end on 31st December. It has now been extended until the end of 2027, giving the public more time to take advantage of this exceptional financial programme.  

Created in 1995 as a household support system to help people buy a main residence, it would be interesting anytime, but in these days of high interest rates, it is a godsend for people who may not otherwise be able to purchase or fix up properties.  


Usually, the scheme is proposed by a lending bank when putting together a finance plan for a buyer. The PTZ can fund up to 50% of the purchase price under the new rules, up from 40%, with the bank handling the rest. It can be used in a variety of circumstances, including when buying a new build, council housing or a house more than five years old that is in need of renovations, as well as for the installation of energy-saving equipment.  

It is aimed at those who have not been homeowners in the two years prior to applying, and is dependent on several factors, such as income resources, location, the type of project and the composition of the household. An income threshold is in effect and varies depending on the postcode of the future accommodation. 

To find out which communes qualify, there is an easy-to-use simulator available here


The government has revised some criteria, like moving the income ceiling upward to extend help to more households than before and raising the amount that can be borrowed for tenants in council flats from 10% to 20%.  

The property in question must also become the main residence of the buyer within a year of purchase or completion of work. If it is meant to be moved into upon retirement, the person must cease working within six years of buying.  


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Photo source: Milivoj Kuhar, Unsplash