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House rent allowance in The Netherlands, are you eligible?

If you are renting you might be entitled for house rent allowance in The Netherlands. Read this article for information about the application for house rent allowance in The Netherlands and answer the question: am I eligible for house rent allowance?
Alice van der Laan

If your rent is too high in relation to your income you might receive a significant cost reduction from the Dutch government. This is nice, because life is expensive enough for a student or starting expat in The Netherlands. So, if you are renting you might be entitled for house rent allowance in The Netherlands. Read this article for information about the application for house rent allowance in The Netherlands and answer the question: am I eligible for house rent allowance?

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Conditions for rent benefit/ house rent allowance in The Netherlands 

  1. You are 18 years of age or older and you rent an independent accommodation. This means you live in a self-sufficient home with bedroom, bathroom and kitchen. Trailers or Houseboats (common in Amsterdam) also meet the requirements.
  2. You need to be registered at the rented property in The Netherlands. Most sub renters are not allowed to register at the address. This means you can’t receive house rent allowance.
  3. Your rent, combined income and capital can’t be too high (we will specify this later in this article).
  4. You need to have the nationality of a EU country, Liechtenstein, Norway, Iceland or Switzerland. Or a valid residence permit or work permit.

 

Is any student/ expat entitled to rent benefit/ rent allowance as long as they fit the terms and conditions?

The rent benefit is a monthly contribution by the Dutch Government that supports Dutch and International tenants including expat workers and students. Unfortunately, if you are a short stay, international student, things get a bit trickier. We found the following quote in Erasmus magazine by Laura Hofstee of SSC EFB saying: ‘Many internationals who stayed here for a year or less thought they were eligible to receive study financing. they applied for it and even received housing financing. However, at the end of their stay they had to pay all of the housing allowance back since they did not meet all the requirements. These amounts sometimes were thousands of euros.’

Income requirements for rent benefit/ house rent allowance in 2018

If you’re 18 – 23 years old, these are the restrictions:

 Monthly rent from EUR 223,42 to EUR 414,02.
Annual income less than EUR 22,200.
Savings and investments less than EUR 25,000.

If you’re above 23 years old, these are the restrictions:

 Monthly rent from EUR 223,42 to EUR 710,68.
Annual income less than EUR 22,200.
Savings and investments less than EUR 25,000

How to apply for rent allowance/ rent benefit in The Netherlands?

There are a few websites that offer help with your rent allowance application but you can also do this yourself. First, log in to the Belastingdienst website. You can apply for a benefit online via the Mijn toeslagen section. You will need a DigiD for this. The 'Mijn toeslagen' section is only available in Dutch. You can also call the Tax Information Line. They can make an appointment for you at a tax office or refer you to a benefits service point. Here, they will help you with your application.  

Also good to know when applying for rent benefit in The Netherlands

  1. The amount you receive is influenced by different factors like your age, who you live with, the rental price, the combined incomes of the household and savings.
  2. Submit changes on time. Is there any change in the data used to calculate your benefit, for example, if your income or your rent changes? In that case, you have to submit this change to the Belastingdienst. Information about how to do this can be found under I want to submit a change.  
  3. You can apply for the rent benefit for a certain year up to 1 September of the following year. For example, you can apply for a benefit for 2018 until 1 September 2019.
  4. You only need to apply for a benefit once. As long as you meet the conditions, the benefit will be paid to you each year.
  5. You can receive money for months before your application – starting from the day your rental agreement or health insurance starts.
  6. The housing benefit will not be deducted from your rent. You will pay the full rent amount and receive the benefit separately from the Belastingdienst (Dutch Tax office).
  7. To file your application you will need to prepare your ID / Passport and your BSN (Social Service Number from the Municipality).

    We hope this article helps you to find your way with your rent benefit application. If you need any help,  please click the 'Get in touch with us' button!

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