Both tenants and landlords with questions will soon be able to contact the independent Rent Support Center Groningen.
A councilor of the municipality of Groningen and the chairman of the Groningen Students’ Union see the establishment as a milestone.
For most tenants, the rent will not increase in 2021. Rents have been frozen due to the corona crisis.
Help for tenants
Many tenants pay too much for their room, studio, apartment or house. Check whether you are entitled to a lower rental price.
Sometimes brokers wrongly ask for intermediary fees. Learn what you can do to claim your money back.
With an all-in price, there is no distinction between the basic rent and the additional costs. Read what you can do about it.
Every so often things break. Find out who is responsible for all kinds of maintenance and repairs.
Service charges are paid for things like gas, water, electricity, internet and television. Learn what you can do if you think you are paying too much.
If you are intimidated or threatened in your own home, that is a serious situation. Learn where you can ask for help.
Help for landlords
The municipality of Groningen has rules for renting out rooms to students. Check here which permits you need.
The Rent Tribunal makes binding rulings on rental issues. Find out which cases occur most frequently.
The government stimulates good tenancy. Read here which things landlords can improve on the rental market.
A good rental contract must meet several requirements. Check here to see if your lease is in order.
Do you want to object or ask for your money back? Model letters can help you get justice.
Are you a tenant and do you want to terminate your lease? Then you can use a sample letter to inform your landlord.
Rent Support Center Groningen can help you free of charge
The Rent Support Center Groningen provides legal advice, support and mediation.
Every resident of the municipality of Groningen with a rental question or rental problem is welcome at the Support Center.
The Rent Support Center Groningen provides legal advice, support and mediation. Every resident of the municipality of Groningen with a rental question or rental problem is welcome at the Support Center.
Frequently asked questions
+ Is there a maximum rent for every property?
For almost all properties, there is a maximum rent that can be calculated using the housing valuation system.
There is one exception, however. For independent properties which, at the beginning of the rental agreement, had a rental price higher than the liberalization limit at that time, there are no maximum rental prices.
However, there is also an exception to this, namely if the rent of an independent accommodation with a rent above the liberalization limit is reviewed and reduced by the Rent Tribunal within six months of the start of the rental agreement. Then the rent will be below the liberalization limit and the housing valuation system will again apply to calculate the maximum rent.
+ Is a broker allowed to charge intermediary fees?
Sometimes a broker is entitled to intermediary fees. For example, if you let a broker search for a residence for you, that broker then finds a suitable residence and you decide to rent that residence.
Often, however, a broker is not entitled to intermediary fees. For example, if the broker already works for the landlord and offers housing on behalf of the landlord. In that case, the broker is not allowed to charge the tenant mediation fees, even if the landlord does not pay any costs to the broker either. This applies to social housing, homes in the free sector and rooms.
+ I have an all-in rental price, what does that mean?
An all-in price means that the landlord only gives you a total amount for the rent. This way you don't know what your bare rent is and what you pay for service costs, for example.
All-in rents are not desirable. With only a total price you cannot determine whether the bare rent is justified or whether you are possibly paying too high an advance for the service costs.
+ What maintenance is the landlord responsible for?
It is the landlord's duty to maintain the property properly. That means you can call on your landlord to make major repairs. You can also expect a landlord to do maintenance from time to time.
The landlord takes care of the major, periodic maintenance. Examples include repairing a leaking roof, maintaining exterior painting, and replacing a central heating boiler.
+ Is there a maximum for service charges?
There is no legal maximum for service charges. However, the landlord may only charge for the costs actually incurred.
Service costs include the costs for: utilities (gas, water and electricity); moveable property (e.g. microwave oven, washing machine and furniture); garbage; janitor; glass and contents insurance; internet; television; cleaning; garden maintenance.
+ What is the Rent Tribunal?
The Rent Tribunal is an impartial organization which prevents, helps resolve or makes an official and binding decision on disputes between tenants and landlords.
In the first place the Rent Tribunal wants to prevent conflicts by providing good information. If a tenant and landlord can't work it out, they offer help with impartial information and mediation.
If that doesn't help either, the Rent Tribunal evaluates the difference of opinion using the laws and rules that apply to tenants and landlords. They then make a ruling that both parties must abide by.
+ Can a landlord just terminate a lease?
If a tenant is systematically causing a nuisance or is regularly late paying the rent, a landlord may terminate the rent. In addition, a landlord may terminate the lease if the landlord has an urgent need for the property itself, if the tenant does not agree to a reasonable offer for a new lease, or if the property has been temporarily rented.
The realization of a zoning plan of the municipality can also be a ground for termination of rent. If you rent a non-self-contained room from a landlady, the rent can also be terminated more easily in the event of a conflict.
Outside of these grounds, a landlord may not terminate. Therefore, if the landlord terminates on another ground, the termination is invalid. Do you think that the landlord has given notice of termination on invalid grounds? Then contact the Rent Support Center Groningen.
+ I disagree with my energy label, what can I do?
On the website of Milieu Centraal you can find which energy label is registered by the central government for your house. It may be a provisional energy label or a final energy label.
If you are uncertain about the energy label or the energy index that the landlord has given you, you can check the information on the website of EP-Online.
If the result does not correspond with the information provided by the landlord, then the landlord is wrong and must get the information right. If you can't work it out with the landlord, or if you have doubts about the label registered at the government, you can contact Rent Support Center Groningen for help.