Rent allowance in The Netherlands

It is not easy for (international)students to find housing in the Netherlands. The country is one of the most populated countries per square kilometer in Europe and has a severe housing shortage. The Dutch government, however, helps starters, students and people with low income. The government provides people that match the conditions and incomes requirements with a monthly rent allowance.

Not many people know that internationals can also apply for rent allowance in the Netherlands. This page explains what the conditions are and how you can apply for rent allowance.

Can international students be entitled to rent allowance in the Netherlands?

To answer the previous question: yes, international students can be entitled to rent allowance in the Netherlands, if they comply with certain conditions. For instance, they have to have an own front door, be registered in the Netherlands and comply with other requirements. Continue reading to find out more about the requirements for rent benefit in the Netherlands.

What are the conditions for rent allowance in the Netherlands?

The Belastingdienst (the Dutch tax authorities) published a list of requirements to which one must comply when applying for rent allowance. The conditions for rent benefit in the Netherlands are:

  • Being at least 18 years or older
  • Renting an accommodation independently
  • You are registered at your home address in the Netherlands
  • Your rent, income and capital do not exceed certain limits (find the exact limits below)
  • You have the nationality of an EU country, Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland or Iceland or have a valid residence permit or work permit

What are the income requirements for rent allowance?

There are certain income requirements for rent allowance. The exact requirements differ per household situation and age. To find the most up to date version of these requirements, visit the website of the Dutch tax authorities.

If you get a raise at work and suddenly earn more money than the income requirement, you should always cancel the rent allowance right away. If you fail to do so, the Dutch tax authorities can fine you. This also applies to a change in the amount of rent you pay or if your capital grows.

How do I apply for rent allowance in the Netherlands?

If you comply to all of the above conditions, you can apply for rent allowance through the website of the Dutch tax authorities. You must have a BSN (citizen service number) to apply. Once you start to receive the monthly allowance you do not have to apply for it again, if you stay in the same accommodation and your situation doesn’t change.

If you live in the Netherlands and comply to the conditions, you can also apply for healthcare allowance.