Housing in the Netherlands is generally in short supply and can therefore be very expensive and hard to find. For assistance on housing, your personal contacts will come in very handy. There are different accommodation options for foreign researchers.
Host housing services
Many Dutch host organizations can arrange housing for their PhD students and guest researchers, in cooperation with local agencies. It is highly advisable to turn to your host institution first, when looking for housing in the Netherlands.
Although public housing is the cheaper option, it is quite difficult to find public housing on a short notice and for short-term accommodation. The waiting lists can easily be over 5 years in the big cities (9 years in Amsterdam and Utrecht). There are however regional differences and in some cases public housing could be an option.
- General government information on renting in the Netherlands
- An overview of housing corporations:
- ‘Student housing associations’ are a particular kind of housing corporation (not just for students), offering subsidized or rent-controlled apartments within a specific area. An example is: DUWO (for the area Delft, Amsterdam, The Hague)
However expensive, private rentals are usually the first choice for expats as they can easily be rented for short-term stays by foreigners temporarily living in the Netherlands. Real estate agents ('makelaars') offer both rentals and houses for sale. If you use a 'makelaar', make sure they are registered with the NVM (National Association of Estate Agents).
- Access and Just Landed Netherlands are general expat support organizations, offering a starting point on housing options.
- Direct Wonen and Rotsvast, two large leasing agents and Funda a platform offering private rentals. Of course AirB&B can also offer various rentals.
- Woonbond, an organisation defending the interests of tenants (in Dutch).
Another option is to request the assistance of a relocation company, guiding you through the entire relocation process from finding temporary housing to scheduling utility connections and driver’s licenses. Here you find an overview of various companies.
Buying a house
Although housing prizes are high, mortgage deals can be relatively attractive, making buying an interesting option if you plan to stay for a longer period of time.