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Housing in Groningen

Living in Groningen starts with a place to stay! Some find rooms in the blink of an eye, while some have more issues when it comes to finding a new home. Finding a room in Groningen can be very difficult, so make sure to start your search as soon as possible. On this page, you can find all information you need about finding a room, contract issues and general concerns regarding your room!

Ensure that you have found a room before the 1st of August if you will be studying in Groningen. If you decide to come to Groningen without pre-arranged housing, then you are highly likely to find yourself in hotels or hostels, if there is still space. This will involve high costs, inconvenience, and stress. This will likely last for a long period of time, probably months after your arrival. If you find a house outside of the city, then make sure you consider the potential extra travel time and travel costs. If you have not found accommodation before August 1, we strongly advise you not to come to Groningen. Below you will find a video which shortly describes the process of finding housing in Groningen.

This page is divided into 3 section, feel free to jump down to any of them:

  • Red Flags – Pay Attention!

  • Problems Regarding Housing
  • The Housing Situation in Groningen – Where to Find Accommodation As Soon as Possible

Red Flags – Pay Attention!

Watch out for swindlers! They will try to persuade you to pay in advance for a room that is not theirs to rent out or doesn’t even exist. Always take the following precautions:

  • NEVER pay rent and/or the deposit in advance when you haven’t seen the room yet!
  • DO NOT pay Dutch postal companies like TNT and Post NL who supposedly will send you the key of the room after you’ve paid them. They do not provide this service!
  • NEVER use Money Gram or Western Union to pay your ‘landlord’!
  • NEVER send copies of your ID!
  • DO NOT trust the copy of the ID that was sent to you; it probably belongs to a previous victim.
  • Google the name and email address of the person you’re in contact with.
  • Be on your guard when the ‘landlord’ doesn’t live in the Netherlands.
  • Nevertheless, a victim of swindling/fraud? Report it to the police or contact Rent Support Center Groningen!

Red flags: 

Do NOT engage in a renting contract if one of the following applies:

  • Unexplained service costs
  • Not allowed to register your address with the municipality ( which is required btw)
  • You have to sign before you can see the room
  • You have to pay administrative or intermediary fees

Problems Regarding Housing 

Your Rights as a Tenant

  1. Contracts Errors
    Landlords often have little legal knowledge, and this causes contract errors. The law takes precedence; you are not bound by unlawful provisions.
  2. Rent Protection
    Subtenants have rent protection only against the person from who they are subletting. So you are left in a vulnerable position against their landlord.
    Tenants can always terminate their rent, while observing the payment term (usually 1 or 2 months)
    You cannot be home evicted just like that. A landlord may go to court to (prematurely) terminate the lease, but only under very strict conditions:

    1. Misbehaviour: ie nuisance, drug, violence, vandalism, non-payments for 3> months.
    2. Urgent own use: a) A Landlord may claim to be compelled to own use (use the house/room for himself) , in which case the tenant’s interest is deemed less pressing. You are then entitled to compensation. b)The property is intended for a specific group (young, students), and the contract includes a maximum age or requires you to be enrolled as a student.
  3. Rental Price
    Rent is made up by the basic rent and service cost. Basic rent (kale huur) refers to the rent minus service or other cots like utilities. Many students also pre-pay for electricity, gas and water (g.w.l) with their monthly rent. This must be agreed upon in the contract. The landlord must account for the different costs per category, provide insight into the total annual utility costs and offset overpayment for the utilities with the tenant.
    The price of student rooms or other housing below the social rent  limit are regulated. It does not matter if you rent privately or from a housing association. The 2023 social rent limit is set at a basic rent of 808.06 or 452.20 below the age of 23. If you rent is below this threshold then it should be set in line with the national points system.
    Does your rent exceed this threshold? This is called the free sector rent. Your landlord thus sets a rental price. 
  4. Rent Increase
    From July 1st 2023, the max annual basic rent increase entails 3.1% for student rooms and social rent or 25 euros for rents below 300 euro; and 4.1% for the free sector. 
  5. Security Deposit
    The landlord can ask for a security deposit. As of July 1, 2023, the security deposit may be a maximum of two months of your basic rent. Always make sure you have a payment transcript. The landlord must refund the deposit within 14 days after the lease has ended. The landlord may only offset the following charges against the deposit:

    1. Overdue rent
    2. Service Costs
    3. Damage to the property that is the tenant’s responsibility (check your contract)
  6. Intermediary Fees
    A retl agency or broker may NOT charge a fee for acting as an intermediary between you and the landlord. If you, however, hire and agency to find a house for you, then they are of course allowed to charge you.
  7. Rent Benifit (Huurtoeslag)
    Rent benefits from the government cover a significant portion of your monthly rent. You are entitled to rent benefits if you rent a house (apparent, studio) with your own front door, bathroom etc. below the social rent limit. Your income and assets also may not be too high to receive benefits, and you have to be officially registered at that address with the municipality.
  8. Maintenance
    Major maintenance works are the responsibility of the landlord. Examples are exterior painting and a new central heating boiler. The tenant is responsible for daily maintenance and minor repairs such as painting interior walls or unclogging the toilet or sink.
  9. Actual Problems / Disputes
    Are you paying too much rent? Is your landlord not doing any maintenance work? Did you not get your security deposti back? And does your landlord not cooperate? OR do you have any other questions about rental law? You can always contact the Rent Support Center Groningen for more information or advice or visit –> Steunpunthuren.nl
    The Rent Tribunal (Huurcommissie) helps tenants of students, free sector and social housing. The tribunal deals with differences of opinion about, amongst other things, the rest, rent increase, service costs, utility costs and disputes about maintenance and home improvements.

Rent Support Center Groningen

The Rent Support Center Groningen (Steunpunt Huren Groningen, SHG) has the task of providing free legal advice support and mediation in matters between tenats and landlord in the municipality of Groningen. Every inhabitant of the municipality with a rental question or rental problem is welcome at RSC Groningen.

Tenants can find all kinds of information about renting on their website. Example topics are:

  • High rents;
  • Unclear costs;
  • Problems with maintenance;
  • Excessively high service costs or;
  • Incorrect mediation costs

If tenat and landlord can not come to an agreement through their mediation, the RSC Groningen can also offer a tenant support with filing a case with the Rent Tribunal(Huurcomissie). In extreme cases, the RSC can also support a tenant in filing a court case. The aim of all their efforts is to help the rental sector o the municipality of Groningen move forward.
Contact information:

  • Email: Info@steunpunthuren.nl
  • Phone: 050 785 1453
  • They have weekly walk in consultation hours: Every Wednesday from 15:00 to 13:00 at Damsterdiep 36

Groningen Student’s Union (GSb)

GSb is the Groningen Student’s Union (Groninger Studenten Bond in Dutch). The Union fights for the interests of students who study at Hanze University of Applied Sciences or the University of Groningen. Their vision is that all students should have access to the best education and housing. You can ask your questions to the legal helpdesk (050-3634675) or by sending an email to steunpunt@groningerstudentenbond.nl. Their advice/help is for free, so don’t hesitate to contact them if you encounter any problems. For rent-specific questions, you can send an email to huurteam@groningerstudentenbond.nl

The Legal Liability Information Point (WA) (In Dutch)

The Legal Liability Information Point is an independent information platform about legal assistance and liability in the Netherlands. The website provides information on various topics, including rental law. This includes the obligations of the tenant and landlord, issues related to rent, maintenance, and disruption of living enjoyment, and also answers frequently asked questions about tenancy law. Their advice/help is for free and explained in simple terms to make sure you know what your rights are.

Fire, long-term power cuts or a hack: are probably not the things you enjoy thinking about. But even in your student house, such emergencies can occur. Do you know what to do when that happens? These tips will help you to prevent it and to be prepared! Check www.ehbj.nl/students.

 

The housing situation in Groningen – where to find accommodation as soon as possible

In the Netherlands, the organization of student accommodation differs from that in many other countries. Students are expected to find their own accommodation on the private market, as universities do not provide housing for incoming (exchange) students.

In Groningen, the best student city in the Netherlands, finding accommodation can be quite challenging. Therefore, we would urge you to take responsibility for finding accommodation independently to ensure you find the most suitable option for yourself on time. Below, you will find a few different websites which could aid you in your search for accommodation.

At Home in Groningen

At Home in Groningen is a website of the municipality in Groningen, on which new available rooms offered by trusted landlords will be posted regularly. The website provides you with all information you need about finding accommodation in Groningen, your legal rights, neighbourhoods, and financial matters.

Hospi Housing 

Hospi Housing is an organization that matches students to a host or guest family. You will have your own private room and shared facilities like a kitchen and bathroom. Hospi Housing has a big network of verified hosts and guest families. You can apply and use their platform for free. Hospi Housing collaborates with the Municipality of Groningen.

On room.nl, you can find an overview of the accommodation that Lefier offers. Lefier is a non-profit housing corporation, which has a large and varied offer for students in the city of Groningen.

SSH Student Housing

Through SSH, an organisation that is funded by the University of Groningen and the Hanze University of Applied Sciences, you can apply for a room. SSH offers furnished accommodation in Groningen for new international students up to the first 12 months of their stay in Groningen. SSH acts as an intermediary in finding temporary accommodation for international students.

The Village 

The Village is an international student complex in Groningen. Find out more on their website.

The Student Hotel
The Student Hotel offers fully furnished rooms with a lot of included services.

Kamernet
Kamernet is a website that is used by Dutch students as well as landlords to give an overview of all available rooms. Most of the rooms on this website are not furnished.  To be able to access the rooms that are available you will have to create an account that will allow you to view and reply to the rooms. You can check out their Facebook page here.

Huurwoningen.nl

Huurwoningen.nl is the biggest independent rental website in the Netherlands, where landlords can advertise their property.  You can check out their Facebook.

Gruno Verhuur

Gruno Verhuur has housing located at Helperpark 302, it provides 32 fully furnished short-stay studios and apartments located in close proximity to the city center. The housing specifically designed for international students and expats who come to Groningen for 6 months or less. You can check out the website grunoverhuur.nl!

RentSlam

RentSlam is a website on which you can find checked, reliable links to offered rental properties.

Ghuus 

Ghuus is a website that gives an overview of available accommodation of multiple housing corporations in Groningen.

Facebook
There are multiple pages on Facebook where students post their room, either temporarily or for a longer period. Some rooms are left furnished, whereas others are empty.
Student Housing Groningen and Groningen Housing are two examples of useful Facebook groups.

Housing Anywhere
Housing Anywhere is a website for exchange students who would like to rent a room in a Dutch student house from a Dutch student that sublets its room. Only students can post advertisements on this website (so no landlords) and all advertisers are verified.

Frently

Frently is an organisation that helps students with paying a fair rental price. In the Netherlands, a landlord is only allowed to charge a certain rental price for an accommodation. This maximum price is calculated with a legal point system. Unfortunately, landlords take advantage of unknowing students, resulting in 75% of the students paying too much rent. Frently provides legal advice and will come by your house to check if you pay a fair price (free of charge). They will reduce your rent, without your landlord being able to kick you out. Frently is located at Nieuwe Ebbingestraat 69.

Hospiteren

Remember that if you are looking for a room via Kamernet or Facebook (so not via a real estate manager or an educational institution), it is important to write a nice (informal) message about yourself, with what you like to do, what you study, what you are looking for in your roommates and other relevant information. Students in Groningen often choose themselves who they want to live with. Therefore, they appreciate it when you write something about yourself, so they know a bit more about you. Going by a student house to get to know the residents is called “hospiteren” in Dutch. If you send a message to a landlord, you can be more formal.

We wish you good luck finding a room & hope you have a great stay here!