Knowing the different components of rent prices in the Netherlands is really important. We break them down here.
Basic rent (kale huur or neto huur)
Basic rent is the cost of your accommodation only. In other words, this is the price that you as a tenant pay each month to be able to stay in the property. Nothing else is included in the basic rent. This means that if the listed price of an accommodation specifies that it is only basic rent, then you will need to take into account additional costs like utilities, service costs, etc. You’ll have to arrange these yourself. We go over what these might cost you in more detail under our housing expenses section.
How much is the average basic rent?
In principle, the landlord himself determines the amount of the basic rent, but it should be reasonable. You can check whether the rent is reasonable by using the house evaluation system.
We estimate that the average basic rent for a room in Maastricht should fall around the €500 mark. A good range for housing in Maastricht, ranging from student rooms to independent studios, is around €350-750. Of course, you can go higher or lower. Also bear in mind that the price of housing in the social sector cannot exceed a certain amount.
As we mentioned, when you rent a house, it’s important to know whether the rent is the basic rent or the all-in rent. If the agreed rent is the basic rent, then you must take into account additional costs. On the other hand, the listed rent could be all-in rent (also known as inclusive rent), which consists of the basic rent plus all other costs, such as gas, water and electricity and any service costs.
If what you’re paying is all-in rent, then it’s important for the landlord to show you a summary of the costs every year. The cost statement must show a breakdown, telling you exactly which part of the rent consists of service charges and the costs of gas, water and electricity, and which part is the basic rent.
Because the costs of gas, water and electricity depend on your consumption, but in your contract you pay a fixed amount every month, it’s possible that the amount you’re paying is too much or too little relative to your consumption. This means that at some point you might be due to receive a refund, or you’ll have to pay an additional amount. This usually takes place once a year: the landlord must send the tenant the final statement for the annual costs (eindafrekening) for the previous year no later than 1 July.
If you’re paying all-in rent, but you’re not getting the separate components, you can send a letter to your landlord requesting them to split it into the separate amounts. If they don’t cooperate, you should contact the Huurteam Zuid-Limburg. They might recommend that you start proceedings against the landlord, at the Rent Tribunal (Huurcommissie).
Maximum rent for social housing
If you’re renting social housing, the sum of certain specific components of your rent should not exceed a certain amount, called the maximale huurgrens van de woning. This amount is determined by the government every year. So what parts of rent matter when determining the maximale huurgrens van de woning?
You should calculate the basic rent, as explained above, plus the following four specific service costs:
- costs for cleaning any common areas in the accommodation
- energy costs for the common areas (e.g. lighting, costs for powering the elevator)
- costs for the caretaker
- costs for service and recreation areas (this usually applies more to elderly homes)
For more information about what gas, water and electricity, service costs, internet and home insurances will cost you, head over to our housing expenses section.