Property For Members

What France's new energy audit rules mean for property owners

The Local France
The Local France - [email protected]
What France's new energy audit rules mean for property owners
How much it costs to heat your home in France could affect its selling price (Photo by PHILIPPE HUGUEN / AFP)

On April 1st, a new law came into effect in France that makes energy audits compulsory for certain properties - here's what you need to know.


As part of the government’s drive to improve energy efficiency in the country’s housing stock, new rules are now in place for owners looking to sell their property.

Energy diagnostics 

For some time now, anyone selling or renting a property in France, has needed to provide a diagnostic de performance énergétique (DPE), a document that serves as an estimate for the property’s energy consumption - ranking them from A (the most energy efficient) to G (the least efficient).

A DPE reports on the following:

  • How a property is heated, domestic hot water production, any cooling and ventilation;
  • The conditions in which they are used and their impact on energy consumption;
  • The amount of energy consumed or estimated per year for each of this equipment and an assessment of the expenses that this consumption represents;
  • Assessing the amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions based on annual energy consumption/estimate;
  • The home's energy label, calculated according to factors including: altitude, the climatic zone, the annual quantity of energy consumed or estimated in relation to the surface area of ​​the home for heating, the production of domestic hot water, the cooling, lighting and ventilation.

A DPE report costs, on average, between €100 and €250 and is valid for up to 10 years.

In France, properties falling into the F and G categories are termed passoires energetiques – energy sinks. These are, generally, older properties - and there are millions of them. 

So, what has changed?

Now, anyone who wants to sell a property not only has to arrange a DPE, those whose properties are rated F or G, will also have to pay for an energy audit (audit énergétique). This is something that has been in the pipeline for some time, and has in fact been delayed from September 2022, so should not really come as a surprise.


This is a much more precise version of the DPE and aims to inform future buyers of the following:

  • a general inventory of the property (thermal characteristics, indications on the heating, ventilation, lighting equipment, etc.);
  • an estimate of the building's energy performance;
  • proposals for renovation work to improve the level of energy performance;
  • estimated energy savings;
  • orders of magnitude of the costs of the proposed works;
  • Information on what state aid that can help with the costs is available.

The cost of an audit énergétique falls on those who are trying to sell. There is no officially regulated price or price range - but the Engie website suggested sellers should expect to pay anywhere between €800 and €1,500. Shopping around seems advisable.

The audit is valid for a maximum five years after issue and must be carried out by an RGE-recognised company.


Housing market impact

Property website Se Loger reports that properties at the least energy-efficient end of the DPE spectrum are much harder to sell.

This is, in part, because of stricter rules on energy efficiency on rental properties, so they’re less popular targets for property investors, but also reticence from individual buyers, wary of the likely additional costs they would face if they bought less energy efficient homes.

Extended rules

From January 1st, 2025, the energy audit requirement will extend to certain properties with an E classification from the DPE; and for those rated D from 2034. This obligation applies only to buildings with a single owner, according to official information, which implies that housing under joint ownership - apartment buildings, for example, will not be affected.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also