Electricity & television in your French home

I am renovating a house. TNT’s website suggests that they provide a digital television service.
I have worked my way through Thomas Malcolm’s book (ISBN 978-2-212-12712-6 2010 edition).
It refers to requiring a minimum number of TV outlets, recommending three RJ45 outlets per “living area” for your LAN but does not cover WiFi. Does any one have later information?

According to http://www.expatica.com/fr/moving-to/A-guide-to-communication-services-in-France_101110.html every household must pay the annual television license, “redevance audiovisuelle”. Does this apply if the household:
has no TV?
only receives a satellite TV service?
only watches DVDs

Thanks in advance for all responses

Yes it does apply. The TV licence fee will be included on your Taxe d’Habitation bill unless you’re eligible to opt out.

The couple who owned our property prior to us didnt pay the aerial bit of the taxe d’habitation. They wrote a note on their to say there was no aerial.
Can this be done?

No Karen - read the link above.

That’s what I thought, but I saw the note written on his bill when it was sent off to be paid! There have been no further letters requesting the missing payment and they have been doing this for years!

Maybe they just don’t watch or listen to anything electronically. If they are then they’re breaking the law - along with many others.

Nowadays, the Tax folk assume that everyone has a TV and the licence fee is automatically shown on the bill for Taxe d’Habitation.

A TV does not need to be connected in any way to receiving programmes… it is just a TV… and if you have one on 1st January (even if it is still in its box)… then you must pay.

To avoid paying, you have to physically tick the box on the Income Declaration, the box that asks you to declare that you do NOT have a TV… and then you sign the Declaration.

So, to my mind anyone who signs false information as the truth… is running a grave risk.

They weren’t signing it falsely. There was genuinely no tv there. We do have one, so do we wait until the next taxe d’habitation? There wasn’t one on 1st January.


Hi Karen… I wasn’t aiming at anyone in particular… just stating how things are. Many folk are unclear about this topic…

Where did your TV come from…??

If you did not have a TV on 1st January 2017, then that is what you declare… tick the box that says NO on your Tax Declaration…

In 2018, of course, you will be liable to pay…

(Yonks ago, we bought ours in the January sales (to watch our dvd’s) … about 12th January… and got nearly a whole year free…) :grin:

No - you confirm it by completing your next income tax declaration. Or…pop down to or email your tax office to let them know! :slight_smile:

Slight correction to Stellas last post - you declare your TV/Audio equipment no matter at what point you had it in your home during the year. The 1 Jan trigger date only applies to Taxe d’Hab.


Simon… you should know me by now… I never do anything illegal or even a bit dodgy…

I did NOT have to pay the licence fee until the following year …the Inspector knocked on my door (June/July time) asking why I claimed to have no TV… when Leclerc had told them I had bought one… boom, boom… I showed him the delivery note dated 12th January… and he smiled broadly and went on his merry way…

and, for info, it clearly states on the back of the Avis d’Impot Taxe d’Habitation…

Contribution à l’Audiovisuel Public: Qui est imposable?
Toute personne redevable de la taxe d’habitation, qui occupe au 1er janvier une résidence (principale ou secondaire) équipée d’un appareil récepteur de télévision ou d’un dispositif assimilée, est imposable à la contribution à l’audiovisuel public.

Not so with my tax office Stella - 150€ fine! If you think about it logically - to only be liable for the RAV if you had receiving equipment in the house on 01 Jan of a given year is simply ridiculous i.e. one day without and 364 days with… seriously?? The streets would be full of TV’s and radios every New Years Day!!!

Simon… the Law is quite clear on this point… 1st January is the date for Taxe d’Hab and also for the TV licence…as far as private individuals are concerned… it’s laid down in black and white … and is clearly stated on the Government website as well.

(I have heard, however, that some professionals have to report differently, when they make their quarterly returns or some such thing…not got full details as it does not concern me.)

Same experience as Stella - no TV 1st Jan did not have to pay until following year

TNT refers to Terrestial Numerique Television. It’s a digital signal that replaced the old analogue system and is received through a directional antenna similar in fact to the analogue ones before but normally higher gain and more directional - it needs to point to the transmitter. Don’t confuse it with Satellite TV which needs a parabolic dish pointing into the sky. Most modern TVs are “digital ready” - older analogue ones can use a set-top converter box. As far as I know TNT channels are only in French.

WiFi is what it says - there are no cables between your internet modem/router and whatever you are using to receive the signal. RJ45 sockets are used to connect CAT5 Ethernet cable to your modem router and generally give a faster and more reliable data transfer the WiFi.

Just to complicate things TNT stations can also be accessed by satellite.

There are no foreign language channels on TNT - the list is here https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liste_des_chaînes_de_télévision_en_France

However materiel which was originally in English - imported TV shows and films may be transmitted with both the original and French soundtrack and most digital TVs can switch to the original audio.

3 RJ45 sockets per living area - seems excessive to me, especially given current more contemporary usage of Wifi repeaters, CPLs and dare I say it, Google Mesh (which is allegedly the holy grail of mesh networks for a decent price, barring the fact that Google analyses all your traffic).

The problem with hardwiring is just that, the sockets and the wires can’t easily be moved afterwards, and your throughput depends on your switching equipment, which might be uptodate today (1gbps network switching bay for example), but will soon become obsolete - I learnt that from experience. Of course, if you suffer from a degree of paranoia about your neighbours hacking your wifi signals and all that, then get cabling :wink:

I personally like to have a scattering of rj45 sockets with a couple of wifi access points so options for wifi and cabling all available - perhaps a little over the top for home use but it does work well.

Wifi repeaters are ok.but I prefer cable + access points.


I agree with Mat, In a former life as a network installer, I would always recommend (n an office environment) a minimum of 3 RJ45’s per desk. A bit over the top for a domestic environment perhaps but given that wifi is restricted by solid walls and other interferences and that cat5e (at least) is good for 100m it keeps options open such as Mat suggests like the ability to extend the network with additional routers and access points.