7 min

Prêt à Taux Zéro (Ptz) : make profitable works !

Various real estate loan systems allow to finance the purchase and improvement of a house or an apartment. Among the most popular, the Prêt à taux zéro (PTZ) and the éco-PTZ are interest-free repayable financial aid. The first one facilitates the accession to the property whereas the second one finances the realization of energy work in the housing. In both cases, these support measures are provided by the State to low-income households. The classic PTZ is particularly useful for future buyers who purchase a new or existing home. This subsidized loan is granted under resource conditions and allows for significant savings. Discover in this article the ins and outs of the PTZ on renovation works

The zero-interest loan, a loan helped by the French government

Maintained until the end of the year 2023, the PTZ designates a real estate credit whose interests are charged to the government to facilitate the access to the property. The latter can be a housing in the new as in the former. If the real estate project concerns the acquisition of an old property, the loan at zero rate would be considered as an aid intended for its renovation. To carry out specific energy work in the housing, the borrower can also benefit from a complementary eco-PTZ. 

With no interest and no application fees, the classic zero-interest loan can finance 20 to 40% of a real estate project. In other words, the scheme subsidizes part of the purchase or construction of a principal residence. Most banks approved by the State offer this aid, but this is not the case for all online credit institutions. Indeed, the administrative and financial steps necessary to offer the PTZ are not necessarily feasible for these specific banking organizations. At the level of the traditional establishments, the attribution of the loan at zero rate is subjected to the same criteria as a traditional loan. 

To process your application, you must provide your bank with the following documents: 

  • Your identity card or family record book,
  • Your last 3 tax notices,
  • A certificate of honour from the buyer,
  • The estimate of the real estate operations,
  • At the end of the work, the receipts of the latter being visibly carried out.

The main objective of the subsidized loan is to encourage the purchase of new or old homes that meet strict energy performance conditions. It is granted to first-time buyers and can also be combined with other work aids (aids from the Agence nationale pour l'habitat [ANAH], MaPrimeRénov', aids from local authorities or energy certificates) offered by the public authorities and regulated by law. In conclusion, this loan can be used to finance the purchase of a new home, as well as to finance a property provided that it is renovated. 

The PTZ for the acquisition of a property in the old, under condition of work 

Strictly speaking, the zero-interest loan can help you buy an older home by financing 40% of the purchase price. This device can also be used to finance renovation work in your main residence. This can be the construction of your future home (creation of a garage or terrace) or work intended to achieve energy savings (thermal insulation, installation of heating or hot water production). To be eligible, the renovations undertaken must be up to 25% of the total amount of the operation (purchase + work). 

It is within this framework that the eco-PTZ can be cumulated with the zero-interest loan. This additional aid exclusively intended for energy renovation is granted on condition that you are an owner-occupier, lessor or one of the co-owners of a property built on the French territory. Like the old PTZ, the eco-PTZ is paid by some traditional banks, but this time, without any condition of resources. In concrete terms, this loan is an advance of funds that is part of the energy renovation aid. 

Note that it is possible to apply for a complementary eco-rate loan, in addition to the classic PTZ, for the realization of specific renovation work. This, with the aim of improving the energy performance of the property. The work carried out must respect a minimum energy performance threshold. In other words, the objective of the eco-rate loan is to achieve a minimum level of energy performance and greenhouse gas emissions. To benefit from the eco-PTZ, the work must be carried out by qualified professionals recognized as environmental guarantors, commonly called "RGE".  

Moreover, the two joint loans can be cumulated on the sole condition that they do not exceed the maximum amount of 30,000 euros, set by the government. The zero-interest loan simply allows the realization of important renovations, corresponding to a refurbishment.

What work is eligible for the zero-interest loan? 

In order to benefit from the zero-interest loan in the former, the desired housing must imperatively be the object of certain renovation works. There are three main categories of eligible work. Here they are: 

  • The creation of new spaces/additions (garage, terrace, parking space, etc.), 
  • Modernization, renovation or development of living space,
  • The realization of energy saving works in the dwelling. 

The zero-interest loan allows you to borrow a sum of money from a bank, without having to pay interest in return. Therefore, it allows the creation of new living areas such as a garage or a terrace, the installation of a kitchen or a bathroom and energy saving work. Following the improvement of the energy performance level, the dwelling must have a maximum annual consumption of 331 kWh/m2 in primary energy for heating, cooling and domestic hot water production. 

Note that the rehabilitation of non-collective sanitation systems can be carried out within the framework of an eco-PTZ financing. Again, thermal insulation (of the roof, exterior walls, windows, doors and low floors) and the installation of heating and hot water production equipment are eligible for the loan. With the eco-loan at zero rate, it is also possible to carry out renovation work of the same nature in a co-ownership. 

Conditions for obtaining the zero-interest loan

The PTZ is granted according to some eligibility conditions to carry out the work detailed above. The financing of the construction, the purchase of a property or the rehabilitation of a dwelling is only feasible if the borrower and the dwelling meet the following criteria   

Right to the PTZ: who is eligible? 

Not all French people who want to renovate or buy their first primary residence are eligible. In fact, to have access to the zero-interest loan, you must be an owner-occupant, future lessor of the housing, co-owner-occupant or lessor. Conversely, the eco-PTZ is open to all, even co-ownerships can benefit from it in order to finance energy renovation work (thermal insulation, rehabilitation of sanitation systems, installation of heating or hot water production). On the other hand, the bank studies the financial situation of the applicant before granting the financing of the work. For information, a person eligible for the PTZ cannot take out a zero-interest loan in any banking establishment. 

The support scheme for home ownership is reserved for first-time buyers. The assisted loan is intended for buyers who have not owned a completed home for at least 2 years. The first criterion for those eligible is that they are making a first property purchase. The legal entities cannot claim with the loan with rate zero. 

Right to the PTZ: what types of housing are eligible? 

The PTZ is an interest-free loan granted by the bank and supported by the French government. If it allows the financing of your real estate project, it applies only to a certain type of housing. In the new, it concerns :

  • Goods sold on plans ;
  • The acquisition of a completed new property that has never been occupied;
  • Building a single-family home/acquiring land;
  • The transformation of offices into property ;
  • The acquisition of a property for its first occupation after the completion of rehabilitation work.

The loan can also help finance the construction or acquisition of an outbuilding, which can be a garage or a parking space. However, in the former, all properties are subject to the zoning system. The zero-interest loan finances 40% of the purchase of the house or apartment in specific zones located only on the French territory. 

To make a long story short, the housing eligible for the scheme must be intended to become primary, secondary or rental residences. It can be the purchase of a building within the framework of a Sale to be renovated (VIR) or a social housing (in this case, the rate applied is only 10%). 

For private housing, the work must not begin before obtaining the zero interest loan. In this type of situation, the borrower must provide his bank with a certificate on the honor which proves his will to carry out real operations. 

Right to the PTZ: what are the geographical zones? 

The conditions of attribution of the PTZ depend on the geographical situation of the real estate in question. The latter, in addition to having to be the principal residence of the borrower, must also respect a precise geographical zoning. Among other things, the housing for which you request a loan at zero rate must be located in zone A, Abis, B1, B2 or C, here are some clarifications:  

  • In the tense zones, A, Abis and B1, there is no old PTZ, because these zones are only eligible for the new zero rate loan; 
  • In the relaxed zone, i.e. in zones B2 and C, the PTZ finances 20% of the amount of the operation in the new and 40% in the old, under the condition of presenting 25% of the work. 

It should be noted that the housing concerned by this work eligible for the PTZ must be built more than 2 years ago. The eco-loan at zero rate works in the same way, but concerns all owners without exception (lessors, co-owners).

The amount and duration of the zero-interest loan 

Intended for future buyers of their first primary residence, the PTZ is a complementary loan granted under certain resource conditions. Its amount varies according to the nature of the work envisaged, the geographical area and the number of people in the household. By law, an unborn child is considered a full member of the household, which allows individuals in this situation to borrow more. As a reminder, the subsidized loan can only participate in the financing of up to 40% of a real estate transaction. Once the loan is acquired, the person concerned will have to repay it in constant monthly instalments according to his income and the location of the housing, over a period of 15 to 25 years depending on the case. 

In general, the zero-interest loan is particularly convenient and flexible, because during this repayment period, a deferral period varying from 5 to 15 years is included. Thus, the interested party will not reimburse the credit during this time interval, which allows him not to cumulate several loans at the same time. Indeed, this situation can be difficult to manage in terms of budget. When the deferment expires, the borrower can begin the repayment period of the zero-interest loan. The latter cannot finance the totality of your investment, so it must come in addition to another loan. In theory, the higher your income, the shorter the repayment period. 

The amounts of the old PTZ granted vary between 43,000 euros and 101,300 euros in zone B2 and between 40,000 euros and 93,000 euros in zone C. To carry out energy renovation work such as insulating walls, windows, doors, low floors, etc., the eco-PTZ finances a maximum amount of 59 000 euros.

Mathieu Amara

Mathieu Amara

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