Apply for social housing (HLM)

Apply for social housing (HLM)

Last update6 juin 2022

What is it?

Social housing, also known as Housing with Moderate Rent (HLM), is dedicated to people with low or average incomes who have difficulty finding private housing.

Social housing offers lower rents than private housing.

Delays are long in large cities for social housing.

  • In Île-de-France (Paris) for example, the average time to access social housing is 7 years compared to 2 and a half years for the national average.

Good to know: Finding social housing outside big cities can be much faster, if it is possible for you.

  • Certain reasons may make your request a priority . For example, if you are homeless, a victim of domestic violence or have a disability.

The request for social housing must be made as soon as possible after the response from OFPRA granting you the status of refugee or beneficiary of subsidiary protection or beneficiary of stateless person status. This will allow you to gain seniority and get housing more quickly.

Good to know: You can apply in several cities and several departments. To help you choose, you can go to this site to see the number of existing social housing units, the number of units allocated last year, and the number of pending applications for each city. If you ask for the city of Paris, or Lyon, or Marseille, you can choose one or more districts, or indicate the whole city.

As soon as you receive your residence permit or residence permit application receipt bearing the words "recognized refugee" or "beneficiary of subsidiary protection" or "beneficiary of stateless person status", you can apply for social housing:

Who is it for?


France entière

Age required
More than 18 years

France entière

Age required
More than 18 years

What to do?


Find the site to make your request

The website covers most departments for the demand for social housing.

Warning! Some departments have their own dedicated site for making, consulting and renewing a request for social housing.

To check on which site you should make your request:

Click on this link, indicate the city where you are looking for accommodation and follow the procedure.

Good to know: The following steps only concern the site


Create an account on

You can apply for social housing online on this website.

You must create your account:

  • Click on "Register/Login"
  • Click on "I create an account"
  • Carefully fill in your personal information

Good to know: If you do not want to do it online, you can also fill in the social housing form (Cerfa 14069*02) and by depositing the complete file (form + supporting documents) at a "counter", i.e. a social housing organization or a town hall.

You will find the list of counters in the "Offers by municipality" tab on the website, indicating your municipality, then going to the bottom of the page.


Apply for social housing online

Once your account is created, you must:

  • Create your file online
  • Send a copy of your residence permit or receipt of application for a residence permit bearing the words "recognized refugee" or "beneficiary of subsidiary protection" or "beneficiary of stateless person status".
    To find out how to scan a document, see the "scanning a document" sheet.

A housing application can be submitted, even if it is still incomplete.

Good to know: In order to strengthen your application for social housing, you must complete it as soon as possible. This means that you must complete the entire form and send the supporting documents requested (salary slips, rent receipts and tax notices, as well as all the documents explaining your professional or personal situation).

The date of first application is important to open other rights. For example, the right to opposable housing (DALO) which makes it possible to have social housing more quickly.


Receive an application registration certificate

Once your file is completed, your request will be validated quickly.

You will then receive a unique national registration number .

Good to know: you must keep this certificate, which is proof that your application has been registered.

From this moment, your file can be consulted by the "social landlords" (these are organisations which rent social housing to individuals).

Each landlord then has the possibility of contacting you if they have accommodation available that fits your request.


Monitoring your application for social housing

You can view , update or extend your existing social housing application by clicking on the "I manage my application" button and entering your unique registration number.

Good to know: you must extend your request every year.


Social housing proposal

A housing allocation committee decides on the allocation of housing.

If the commission decides to allocate accommodation to you, you can either:

- accept the accommodation and sign a contract

- refuse the accommodation. In this case, your application for accommodation remains valid until its renewal date.

Good to know: because of the shortage of housing in large cities, it is advisable not to refuse housing without justified reasons (unhealthy flat, faulty isolation...). The risk being otherwise that you may not be offered other accommodation for a long time.

And after?

Yearly Renewal

In order for the application to remain active, it must be renewed every year.

The application must be renewed one month before the anniversary date of its online registration.

Please note: you risk having to start all over again and above all lose your seniority if you do not renew your application.

Update your file

You are strongly advised to update your request each time your situation changes (address, people to stay, income, etc.).

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