City of Utrecht Help for students in rented accommodation
As a tenant, you have certain rights. For example, your accommodation must be safe, without any defects and the landlord cannot charge unreasonable rent. You can contact various organisations if you have any questions about tenancy law.
Results of the trial investigation into good landlords
Tenants in Utrecht are regularly experiencing malpractice. We want to identify and tackle these wrongdoings in the housing market and started a trial with 4 regional municipalities in 2019. We also investigated intimidation and threats of tenants by landlords. The results of the trial are now available.
Top 5 most important housing rights
- Reasonable rent. Do the rentalcheck
- Properly maintained accommodation with no overdue maintenance.
- Transparent service charges that are settled at the end of the year.
- A landlord can never evict a tenant without good reason. Never accept a notice of termination without seeking out advice about your rights.
- A landlord must respect your privacy. The landlord is therefore never permitted to enter your room unannounced.
|Good landlord||Bad landlord|
|Uses the points system to calculate the rent||Charges exorbitant prices|
|Maintains the property well||Neglects the property|
|Talks to tenants||Bullies and/or threatens tenants|
|Complies with the tenancy protection rules||Makes unannounced visits to check the accommodation|
|Creates a final statement every year for the actual costs of services||Presents invoices that the tenant does not need to pay and demands payment|
|Refunds the deposit to the tenant if he/she has left the room clean and tidy||Does not refund the deposit|
Is your rent too high? Stand up for your rights
Perhaps you had a good relationship with your landlord at first, and the problems only started later on. Look at the following tips: by being well prepared, it will be easier for you to stand up for your rights.
Take picturesTake pictures (including a date & time stamp) of your accommodation showing the condition it was in when it was delivered to you by the landlord and do the same when you deliver it back to the landlord.
If you are blamed for damage or defects at a later stage, you will be able to prove what your accommodation looked like, which can strengthen your position.
Keep a logKeep a log of any unwanted behaviour by the landlord.
This will make it easier to find any pattern in the landlord’s misconduct.
Keep a record of any correspondenceAlways record any communication with the landlord in writing.
This includes agreements you have made with the landlord, as well as anything unpleasant that has happened, e.g. if you are called names or threatened.
Ask for an overview of the service chargesAsk for a written overview of the yearly service charges (as of 1 July of every year).
The landlord must settle the service charges annually according to the actual consumption. This ensures that you know you haven’t paid too much and you will not be faced with any unexpected surprises if you have paid too little.
Unfortunately, there are cases where landlords harass, intimidate or threaten their tenants.
- The landlord often makes unannounced visits to the accommodation. Because the landlord owns the property, he/she may think that they can walk in at any time.
- The landlord keeps sending angry e-mails.
- The landlord terminates the tenancy agreement for no reason.
- The landlord blackmails tenants. For example: 'If you accept this rent, you can sublet your room'.
- The landlord calls and/or sends WhatsApp messages late at night.
- The landlord holds you responsible for costs you are not required to pay.
- The landlord disconnects the internet, television or even the hot water facilities.
- The landlord threatens to remove certain appliances in the accommodation, such as the washing machine, oven, etcetera
- The landlord says that you, as a tenant, shouldn’t complain about the amount of rent you need to pay, otherwise you should go elsewhere.
If you are dealing with a landlord who is intimidating or even threatening, don’t accept this behaviour. Get help! Please contact Huurteam Utrecht for advice about your specific situation.
Are you renting a room, studio or apartment in Utrecht and want to know if you are paying too much rent? Use the rent calculator at normalehuur.nl. If you are paying too much rent, contact Huurteam Utrecht. Huurteam will come and visit your accommodation to calculate the maximum rent that can be charged for your room or apartment and can help you get a reduction in the amount of rent you pay.
Different rules apply for different types of rent (shared accommodation, self-contained residence, temporary housing, campus contract). For more information about tenancy law, please visit the website normalehuur.nl. This is an initiative of the students union VIDIUS in co-operation with Huurteam Utrecht. VIDIUS also offers legal assistance. They can help you if you have any questions or problems with your rented accommodation.
Het huurteam Utrecht can tell you everything you need to know about tenancy law, the standard rent and how to deal with any grievances. For example, Huurteam Utrecht helps tenants who feel threatened or intimidated by their landlord. Huurteam Utrecht's services are free for tenants in Utrecht. Huurteam Utrecht is supported by the municipality of Utrecht.
Reporting bad landlords
If you are having problems with your landlord, go to the Meldpunt huisjesmelkers ( slumlord hotline in Dutch) page, where you can report a bad landlord..
Approved anti-squatting agencies
If you are renting anti-squatting accommodation, please make sure that the managing agency is an approved anti-squatting agency (Dutch). You can then be sure that your rights as an anti-squatting tenant are respected.
Menu link Wonen/Misverstanden over huurbescherming (Housing/Misconceptions about tenancy protection)
You may think that the landlord is in charge, but you have rights as a tenant. The rent, notice periods and tenancy agreements are strictly regulated.