Buying a home in the Netherlands, especially in the Haarlemmermeer region requires one to be armed with all the facts and information. We have already covered what it is to live and buy or rent a house in the Haarlemmermeer region.
So what is the difference between a social rental home and a rental home in the private (free) sector?
Social housing is housing meant for people with a low income. In the case of social rental home, maximum rents and a maximum rent increase apply. As a tenant in a social rental home, you also qualify for housing allowance (huur toeslag). These rules do not apply in the free sector.
Rules guiding the social housing sector
To keep rental housing affordable for people with a lower income, rules apply to the rental price of social rental housing:
- maximum rent for the home: the points system of your home determines this;
- maximum annual rent increase;
- you must have a ‘not too high’ income to be eligible for a social rental home from a housing corporation;
- rent allowance: eligible for an allowance from the government for your rent costs. The amount of the allowance depends on your rent, your income, your age and your living situation;
- you and your landlord can call on the Huurcommissie in the event of disagreement between tenant and landlord.
Do you wish to rent a property in the private (free sector)? Then there are fewer rules for the rental price than for a social rental home:
- no maximum rent for the property;
- no maximum annual rent increase: unless stated in the lease;
- the point system does not apply;
- you are not eligible for housing allowance;
- in the event of disagreement, you must go to court and not to the Huurcommissie. Sometimes you can still go to the Huurcommissie for advice (not for a binding decision). This is only possible if your lease contract states that you can go to the Huurcommissie in case of disputes about the rent or service costs.
Same property, different rental price?
When you sign the lease, you agree to the rental price that the landlord is asking at that time. This sometimes means that your neighbours who have been living in the same type of house for a longer time will pay (much) less rent. Do you want to know if you are not paying too much? Then you can have the initial rent checked by the Rent Committee in the first 6 months of your lease. This is also possible if you rent a house in the private (free) sector.
The rent that you pay for a social rental home also depends on your income. If you earn more, you often pay more rent. This is usually meant to help people with low incomes.