“Talking Expat “”Taxe”" Time”

At the Igor Stravinsky Fountain on a very Gray Paree day, Sunday, April 13, 2008

Talking Expat “Taxe” Time

Parler Paris…

Your taste of life in Paris and France
Monday, April 14, 2008
Paris, France

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Last chance – offer ends tomorrow!

French Property Insider Special Offer
Half Price One Year Subscripton — $29!

Every Thursday, hundreds of smart folks receive an electronic magazine (call it an “E-Zine”) called “French Property Insider.” For those who are even remotely interested in having their own “pied-à-terre” in Paris or stone cottage in the countryside of France, it’s a big bonus. Every week, “FPI” comes directly into their email in-box with oodles of information about finding, buying, owning, renting, renovating, managing and you-name-it-ing property in France.

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Dear Parler Paris Reader,

I’ll bet many of you Americans are feverishly preparing your tax returns to submit by midnight tomorrow night, April 15th. Lucky us…if you are a U.S. citizen or “resident alien” (I love this term — makes me think of E.T!), living and working (or on military duty) outside the U.S. and Puerto Rico, you have plenty more time — until June 16th.

The French have a little more time to submit their returns — May 5th for professionals and companies, May 30th for individuals and taxes may be paid in installments depending on the circumstances based on the previous year’s declaration — but mostly paid in three: February 15, May 15 and September 15 (“le solde”).

Aside from income tax, residents of a property pay an annual habitation tax (“taxe d’habitation”), regardless of whether they are the owner or renter, occupying the property on the first day of January. It’s calculated on a complicated formula roughly based on the rental value of the property.

Tacked on to that is one I’d guess is cheated on more than any other — the “Redevance Audiovisuelle,” or Television Tax, paid by every household with one or more televisions. It is designed to go toward funding public programming (France Télévisions, Arte-France, Radio France, RFO, RFI, Institut national de l’audiovisuel) and was important when comm

ercial television didn’t exist here. It was easier to cheat on it before cable TV existed and you could buy a second hand television and then claim you didn’t own one, seeing as there was no proof. In 2007, the tax was 116€…just to watch a little CNN, BBC or France 24 in English (my favorite). Both taxes are due before November 15th.

If you own property, then you will be liable for annual property taxes (“Taxe Foncière”). The basis for the tax is determined by the “valeur locative cadastrale” — or the annual rent on the open market, but the true formula per district is quite complicated. Even the official government site doesn’t explain it in detail, so don’t even try! I view it as a big pie representing the “budget” that is cut up into as many pieces as exist to fulfill the needs of the budget. So, the more densely populated or commercial a district, the more pieces of the pie, therefore the lower the tax per owner.

In comparison to annual U.S. property taxes, which range from .5% to 3.5% of the assessed value of the property, Taxe Foncière is less than .001%! In Paris, the taxe is quite a bit lower than in the countryside where fewer individuals or businesses support the “pie” and I find that Taxe d’Habitation is normally about the same as Taxe Foncière. Neither are hardly worth discussing!

Recently Brian Knowlton wrote in the International Herald Tribune (April 1st), that “U.S. Expats Fight Their Soaring Tax Burden” — about the change in the American tax code which took place two years ago, raising the Expat’s tax burden making it more expensive for U.S. companies operating abroad to keep Americans on their payrolls. The U.S. is the only country taxing its citizens on foreign earned income. The current non-taxable limit is $82,400, but anything over that is double taxed. Knowlton says that “A few Americans have even renounced their citizenship because of soaring tax bills.”

I questioned my own CPA in the U.S., John Gosch of Ironbridge, LLP , who said that he has “seen foreign employers in the past replacing U.S. employees — one of the reasons why you do not see so many Americans as employees on foreign registered cruise ships.” Americans abroad get ‘hammered’ by paying the difference in the U.S. tax and end up expecting higher salaries to make up the difference. The subject is often tossed around in congress, but he noted that “some congressmen actually have questioned why ‘mink swathed’ Americans living abroad should get a special tax break.”

Guess now we know what they think really think of us ‘traitors’ living outside the U.S.! Can’t you just imagine me swathed in all that mink thanks to all that foreign earned income? Ha! Muskrat maybe. Mink? I wish.

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris

P.S. If you’re planning on visiting Paris between now and late Summer, then don’t delay to book your apartment accommodations during this most visited time of the year! See our newest and most luxurious Paris apartments…such as “La Bonne Nobel” in Amélie’s Montmartre…at /parlerparis/apartments/rentals/nobel.html

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This Week in French Property Insider…

Sorbonne ParisHow to Get an A-Plus in Student Housing
By Adrian Leeds

So, your kid’s about to spend their third year of college abroad? Or have decided to do their studies somewhere in France to improve their French or broaden their horizons. If it’s Paris that is their destination, then not only is student housing scarce (be sure to read the following article!), but is expensive!…Subscribers Read On…

Learn how to buy property in France!

French Property Insider is a weekly e-zine, sharing insights, recommendations, tips, and discoveries about Paris real estate and French property. Each information-packed issue is devoted to educating its readers on how to effectively, efficiently and profitably purchase property in France.

For more information visit /frenchproperty/insider or email [email protected]<


“The Ultimate Travel Writer’s Workshop”
W with Lori Allen and the AWAI
July 24-26, 2008
San Francisco, CA

This summer, spend three fun days with the folks from the American Writers and Artists, Inc. in San Francisco and discover the secrets to traveling the world, potentially for free by getting paid as a travel writer.

It’s true. Lots of writers do it. This is your chance to rub shoulders with some of the best writers and editors in the business and discover first-hand how to turn your traveling into royalties or paychecks, and see the world in a different way than as an ordinary tourist.

Register by June 24, 2008, and save $300!

To register for the Ultimate Travel Writer’s Workshop call Terry Frank at (202) 370-6459 EST or toll-free at (866) 415-1425 or email her at: [email protected]

We wanted better guides. So we wrote them.

Insider Paris Guides are written for people who love the City of Light. You’ll get a Paris insider perspective on Good Value Restaurants… Making a Life… Black Culture… Expat Writers…plus the newest guide, Practical Paris!

Visit http://www.insiderparisguides.com

Email: [email protected]

Welcome to your home in Paris. Home is how you will feel in a private apartment in Paris that has the “seal of approval” from Parler Paris Apartments and me, Adrian Leeds.


La Bonne Nobel
Rue Nobel – one of Montmartre’s Most Charming Streets
Two-Bedroom (One-Bedroom + Bedroom/Office), Sleeps 4

Rue Nobel is one of Montmartre’s most charming staircases — the romantic Montmartre we now know as depicted in the popular movie “Amélie Poulain.”

On the third floor of an elegant “pierre-de-taille” building with an elevator, on a quiet stair-stepped street in Montmartre, with no through traffic or hint of noise, sits “La Bonne Nobel.” Completely renovated in late 2007, this gem is bright, shiny and luxuriously comfortable. Every surface and corner of the apartment has been exquisitely decorated in soothing tones of pale blues, beiges and soft browns.

Reserve now! Visit /parlerparis/apartments/rentals/nobel.html
or email: [email protected]

Parler Paris Après Midi

Come for a drink and to meet and chat with other readers in Paris…

The next gathering is May 13, 2008 and every second Tuesday of the month.

Parler Parlor French-English Conversation Group

Practice speaking French and English. Make friends, discuss interesting topics, learn about other cultures, progress in understanding and speaking, naturally and easily. Meets three times a week — come as often as you like!

Parler Parlor meets Tuesdays 6:30 to 8 p.m. and Saturdays 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

23, boulevard de Sébastopol (at the corner of rue de la Reynie), 1st arrondissement
3rd Floor on the Left (read notice on door to obtain entry code)
Métro Châtelet, Les Halles

Wednesdays 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
14 rue Mabillon, 6th arrondissement
(at rue Guisarde and Le Marché Saint-Germain) 1st Floor
Métro Saint-Germain-des-Prés, Mabillon, Odéon

For further details, visit http://www.parlerparlor.com

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The Art of Living Guide to Le Marais.





France Today The Magazine of French Travel and Culture, delivers all the information you need to indulge your passion for France: travel advice you won’t find anywhere else, off-the-beaten-path trips, the inside track on trends in dining, hotels, shopping and style, and the culture scene.

To subscribe, visit http://www.francetoday.com or call 1-800-901-6560

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