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• You ‘ve signed a rental contract and you pay way too much money? Contact a local huurteam or initiate a review of your lease on www.huurcommissie.nl within six months after signing the lease. • Generally, income conditions apply for cheaper housing. • Be cautious of sub-lets. You need to be able to register yourself. COSTS AND CONTRACTS • Your rental contract should cover: • Status: is the property furnished, semi-furnished or empty? There may be an inventory and/or photos. • Duration of lease. • Notice period and stipulations about how notice should be provided. • Service charges (check ‘all-inclusive’. What portion is rent?). • Utilities (apportioned how?). If you agree to a monthly fee, including an advance for utilities, then make sure that utility use is metered for your property. Your landlord should show you an account (eindafrekening) of payments and real costs at least once a year. • A diplomatic clause if you have to leave because your employer has relocated you elsewhere. You need to be clear on when and how this clause can be used to allow you to escape your rental obligations. • Expect to pay one or two months of rent as deposit – one month’s rent in advance to the landlord, and one month’s rent if you use an agent.

• Check the city housing department for more information about low-priced housing. • You can find useful internet sites for renting a room or student accommodation, like www.kamernet.nl. SHORT-TERM HOUSING OPTIONS • Many cities in the Netherlands have aparthotels for corporate clients, which can sometimes be less anonymous and cheaper than hotels. • Websites aimed at tourists – like AirBnB – are great for a private apartment for a couple of months. • Short-stay regulations in Amsterdam make it ‘illegal’ to rent the majority of properties for less than six months, but many properties are listed for less than six-month stays regardless. LIVING ON THE WATER • Tempted by life on a houseboat or Dutch barge? • The houseboat market is a very close-knit community so personal references will go a long way. • There are many rules and regulations regarding permits and mooring conditions. Track down a specialist agent to steer you through the procedures. • Useful sites include www.waterwonen.nl and www.botentekoop.nl (which includes all kinds of boats for sale).

TIPS • Discuss your needs explicitly with your housing agent or relocation advisor. • Select one, at most two, agencies. Avoid engaging with too many agents for the same objective. • Arrange viewings three weeks before you need to move in, not earlier. • Be ready to move quickly. • If the agent commission seems too much, find property on your own, but be ready to put in lots of legwork. • Most of all, you will need luck, and timing is also important. • Post a notice in the housing section of expat forums. • Stay clear of anyone asking for a cash payment or cash commission. • Respond quickly to adverts and take someone along with you when viewing. • Always check that you can register with the BRP. • The standard NVM (Dutch estate agent association) contract has an English version for comparison. STUDENTS • Universities try their best to help students with housing but there are serious shortage issues. • There are non-commercial agencies for students, housing corporations and antikraak (anti-squat) agencies that rent out accommodation.





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Expat Survival Guide 2020 - The Netherlands  

The Expat Survival Guide assists your first essential steps: finding a home and job, organising permits, setting up finances and healthcare,...

Expat Survival Guide 2020 - The Netherlands  

The Expat Survival Guide assists your first essential steps: finding a home and job, organising permits, setting up finances and healthcare,...