Get involved

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.