The CAF (caisse d’allocations familiales) can help you pay your rent if you are renting an apartment or a room, if you are flat-sharing or if you are renting a room at a student hall of residence (Cité U). You can apply for the personalised housing aid, Aide personnalisée au logement (APL).
Who can apply for housing aid?
International students with a valid residence permit who are renting, subletting, flat-sharing, living in Cité U (Crous) or in social housing may apply for the French Aide personnalisée au logement (Apl).
Please note that students with a temporary long-stay visa that exempts from a residence permit cannot apply for this financial aid.
When should I apply for housing aid?
You can apply as soon as you have moved into your accommodation.
For example, if you move into your accommodation in September and you apply rihgt away, you will be able to receive the housing aid for October. In this case, the first payment will be made into your bank account between November 5 and 10.
How can I apply for the Caf housing aid?
You should do an online simulation before starting the procedure, to check if you are eligible. After the simulation, you can apply for the financial aid.
If you don’t yet have an online CAF account (with a CAF ID number), you select « Vous n’êtes pas allocataire ».
At the end of the application process, you will get your CAF ID number, which you should keep carefully!
The CAF website is in French, but they offer tutorials for international students in English and Spanish. You have to scroll down to the bottom half of the page to find the tutorials.
Here are some answers to questions asked in the online form
- For the question “Vous êtes étudiant ?” choose “non-boursier” if you are not receiving a grant from the French government. The Erasmus+ grant is not a French government grant.
- To the question “Vous êtes affilié à la Sécurité sociale étudiante ou couvert par la Sécurité sociale de vos parents ?” answer “Oui“.
- Concerning your nationality, students from the European Union should select “EEE or Switzerland“. For the other nationalities, select “Autres“.
- Finally, in the question concerning “les Charactéristique du Logement“, you should indicate “Logement décent ⇒ Oui“.
Which documents do I need?
For all students
- a rental contract (bail in French) or a CROUS housing certificate (attestation de logement CROUS),
- a bank identification document, called a RIB
- a birth certificate (translated into French)
For students of EU nationality
- The European health insurance card
- Your passport (or identity card)
- Your enrolment certificate
For students from outside the EU
- A copy of your passport and the document validating your residence permit
Leaving France? What to do with the CAF
If you are living in a student hall of residence run by the CROUS
The CROUS will inform the CAF of your departure.
If you are living in a private residence or rent a private accommodation
- Connect to the CAF website
- Go to “Mes démarches” and click on “Déclarer un changement”.
- Check the box “Adresse” and then “Suivant”.
- Change your address to the address of your destination country.
- Fill in the additional information requested and confirm.