The municipality of Tilburg has decided to initiate a Rental Team in 2021 (called Huurteam in Dutch). The goal: a free, honest and accessible counter for all rental-related questions and support in obtaining correct rental price, recovering overpaid service costs or double brokerage costs and repairing defects in your rental property. You can also contact us for questions about deposit, agency costs and incorrect payments. Even if you are intimidated, we can think with you to solve your issues.
Yes, our services are free for all residents in Tilburg who rent a home, both in the private or in the social sector.
However, if you choose to start a procedure with the Rent Tribunal, you will pay legal costs (a form of administration costs). We advance this and charge it afterwards. This concerns 25 euros per procedure that you submit.
If you rent a home from one of the Tilburg housing corporations (WonenBreburg, Tiwos, TBV Wonen), we always ask you to first submit your complaint via the complaints procedure of your corporation. This also applies to complaints about housing allocation via WoninginZicht.
If you cannot reach an agreement with the corporation, we will refer you to the Disputes Committee in the event of disputes with a corporation. This disputes committee is independent and assesses whether the Tilburg housing associations and Woning in Zicht have acted in the right way.
If it concerns rental prices, defects or service costs, we can always give you free advice.
This depends on your question. We will contact you as soon as possible to process your question.
Requests for advice and contract checks are handled quickly, within 48 hours. If you choose to start a procedure with the Rent Tribunal, we depend on their processing time. This can be between six months and a year, depending on the procedure. In the meantime, we will keep you informed of possible progress.
Huurteam Tilburg advises and supports with procedures and questions regarding rents, service costs, maintenance defects, and so on. We do not support finding a new living space.
Our advice is to register with WoninginZicht. The rental properties of the Tilburg corporations are offered here. In addition, there are several private websites where landlords offer their homes, such as Funda, Pararius and Huurwoningen.nl.
Student housing from WonenBreburg is offered via Klik voor Rooms, you can also take a look at TalentSquare. Private rooms are offered through various websites. There are also various social media groups in Tilburg where rooms are offered or where inquiries can be made from other tenants and/or fellow students.
You are entitled to housing benefit if you meet all of the following conditions:
- You have a rental agreement;
- You pay the rent every month and can prove it;
- You are 18 years or older;
- You are registered with the municipality at your home address;
- You have Dutch nationality or a valid residence permit;
- Your allowance partner or co-resident has Dutch nationality or a valid residence permit.
- You rent an independent house. This means that you have your own front door, toilet and kitchen. It is not possible to apply for rent allowance for rooms;
- Your basic rent is below the limit of €737.14 in 2020 and below the limit of €752.33 in 2021;
- Your income is not too high. Calculate your income via the website of the central government;
- Your assets are below the limit of €30,846 in 2020 and below the limit of €31,340 in 2021.
If you meet all the conditions, you can apply for housing benefit via the website of the central government (in Dutch). If you need help with this, you can contact the Municipality of Tilburg.
You sign a contract for a period, which includes a notice period. However, you sometimes have the option to cancel your lease earlier. It all depends on the type of contract you signed.
- Contract for an INDEFINITE PERIOD OF TIME: The notice period is a payment term, which is usually one month. If you cancel in June, your contract will expire on the last day of July.
- Contracts for an INDEFINITE TERM CONTRACT WITH MINIMUM DURATION: These types of contracts often have a minimum duration of twelve months. You cannot cancel the contract within these first twelve months. After that, the rules as described above apply for a specific time. If you want to cancel before the minimum term has expired, we advise you to contact the landlord and explain your situation. Perhaps you can come to a compromise.
- FIXED-TERM CONTRACTS: Fixed-term contracts can always be terminated, even if the contract states that this is not the case.
- SHORT STAY CONTRACTS: These contracts do not fall under tenancy law, but many short stay contracts are used incorrectly, so you may have a different type of contract. Please contact one of our consultants for more information.
You can cancel your contract by sending a registered letter to the landlord. This is a letter that you post at the post office and for which you pay extra so that the landlord has to sign for receipt. This letter must contain:
- Landlord’s name;
- Date of sending letter;
- Your name;
- The address where you’re now renting;
- When you want to cancel the rental agreement. Please note the statutory notice period (a payment term).
- Request a refund of deposit with your bank account number (optional);
- Your new address (optional).
Send this letter by registered letter, but also by email just to be sure. You can find a sample letter in our downloads (Dutch and English). If you have any further questions, let us know! We are happy to watch with you.
No, this is not allowed. There are specific rules that the landlord must adhere to when terminating a rental contract. Think of the correct term, giving a valid reason, and so on. These can be annoying conversations with the landlord, so please contact us about this to have this conversation for you. We will give you an honest answer as to whether the termination is justified and assist you if it is not.
The landlord can only terminate a lease for a limited number of reasons. This is determined by law. These reason are:
- The tenant does not behave as a good tenant, for example in the event of large rent arrears or serious nuisance.
At the end of a temporary contract that stipulates that you must leave the house after the contract has expired.
- PLEASE NOTE: Even though your contract states that it is temporary, it does not mean that this is the case. A lease must meet several requirements to serve as a temporary lease. Be sure to let us check this if you’re not sure!
- Due to urgent personal use. This can be understood to mean 2 things:
- Urgent personal use because the landlord wants to occupy the house himself. This is only allowed after the landlord has been the owner for three years.
- If the landlord wants to demolish or renovate the house. There are also strict rules on this, so please contact us if this occurs.
- If the owner of the living space goes bankrupt, but there is still a mortgage on the property. This is not possible if you were already renting before the owner bought the house.
- Ordinary sale of the house is emphatically not a valid reason to terminate the lease. Then you simply get a new landlord.
Very rare reasons:
- If you as a tenant refuse to sign an offer for a reasonably new lease.
- If the landlord wants to realize a zoning plan.
- In the case of landlady rooms, the landlord (the landlady) may terminate the rent during the first 9 months without giving any reason.
In the Netherlands, the maximum rent of a room, studio or apartment is regulated by means of a scoring system (sometimes also called a rental price check). A house gets points for parts such as surface area, certain amenities, common areas, and so on. All these points together determine what the maximum basic rent is. That is the maximum amount that a landlord can charge for your living space.
If you also want to know whether your rental price is correct, please contact one of our consultants.
If you opt for a procedure at the Rent Tribunal, they will conduct an independent investigation into the property. They assess the basic rent by means of a scoring system (rental price check). If they come to the same conclusion as we have come to, namely that you are paying too much, they will lower your basic rent. This is binding for the landlord. If you start a procedure within the first six months after signing your lease, this even has retroactive effect! So do not wait too long.
No, not all homes are eligible for a reduction via the Rent Tribunal. Homes above the liberalization limit (the limit between social rented homes and private rented homes) cannot be lowered. However, it sometimes happens that an independent home actually belongs in the social sector after a scoring (rent check) has been done. This can be done within the first six months after signing your rental contract.
Example: Charlie lives in a small apartment and pays 1050 euros basic rent here. After a rent check, it appears that the house should have been only 590 euros. Charlie has been living here for five months. Despite the fact that the house is rented out in the private sector, the Rent Tribunal can still lower the basic rent.
A landlord may increase the basic rent once a year by a certain percentage, usually on 1 July. This percentage is determined nationally and cannot be deviated from. Unfortunately, landlords do not always adhere to this, so it is good to have this checked. What is also not allowed: fixed rent increases in the contract, increases in service costs, increases in All-in prices, …
Common service costs are gas, water, electricity, internet, cleaning costs, and so on. In addition, the tenant is responsible for minor daily repairs. This includes interior painting, securing loose parts as far as they are not worn, washing accessible windows or replacing the rubber rings when the tap is dripping.
The service costs that you pay monthly are an advance on the amount that you actually use. After each calendar year, the landlord must provide an overview to indicate how much you have used. The landlord must prepare an annual statement in which all costs incurred are specified. This annual statement is then placed next to your paid advances. If you have paid too much in advances, you will get some money back. If you have paid too little in advances, you will have to pay some extra yourself. If you have paid too much in advance, you must receive a refund from the landlord.
If the landlord does not provide this overview, or you do not agree with the advance, we can help you object to this.
Not everything that the landlord pays for the house may be passed on to the tenant. Think of major maintenance, such as mechanical installations, costs of the caretaker insofar as they are important for the landlord, and so on. If you are not sure whether everything that is charged is actually allowed, let us check your contract or service charge statement for you free of charge.
In addition, we would like to indicate that the landlord may only charge for services that have been agreed in your contract!
Yes, service costs must always be settled. It happens that landlords put this differently in a rental contract, but this is incorrect and illegal.
Have you not received a settlement, does the landlord say that this is not necessary or is the settlement incorrect? The Rent Tribunal can check per calendar year whether the monthly advances that you have paid were reasonable. They ask the landlord to hand over all invoices that he says he has paid in order to arrive at a fair settlement. If the landlord does not do this, the Rent Assessment Committee will determine, via standard amounts, how much you should have paid. Standard amounts are always favorable to the tenant.
We can help you submit your case to the Rental Tribunal.
The landlord may only expand or reduce the service package if you agree. Think about placing furniture if you have agreed to this. The landlord may also write off this. However, it is not allowed for the landlord to replace all furniture on its own initiative and then charge it to you by increasing the service costs without your permission.
Does the landlord want to change a service that can only be provided to multiple tenants at once? Then 70 percent of the tenants must agree. Those who vote against have to pay for this service. This could be the case if some of the tenants want a cleaning help and others don’t.
This depends on the annual service charge statement that the landlord provides. If the landlord does not provide an invoice, the advance on service charges may not be increased. If the landlord does provide insight into the costs actually incurred and this shows that the advance you have paid is too little, the landlord may increase this amount.
However, you may object to this if you believe that the settlement is incorrect. Huurteam Tilburg can support you with this via a notice of objection. Please contact us in good time, because if you pay the increase, you have agreed to it.
A difference is made between small, daily maintenance and major maintenance.
Minor, daily maintenance: This is maintenance that a tenant must solve himself, such as oiling hinges, unblocking the sink and repairing small defects such as painting spots on the wall or replacing lamps in your own living space.
Major maintenance: This is maintenance that the landlord must solve, such as floor and/or wall damage in the event of water leaks, broken windows and frames, painting outside, etc. The landlord may not charge you for this either.
For a complete list of repairs, see also the website of the central government (in Dutch).
If you experience a defect, report this to your landlord as soon as possible. This should assess this and repair it if it falls under major maintenance. You can report a defect by telephone, but it is also important that you do this in writing, so that you have proof of the report.
If the landlord does not (timely) repair the defect, you can submit a procedure for rent reduction to the Rent Tribunal. This means you pay less rent for the period that the defect has not been resolved. This serves as a ‘motive’ to put the landlord to work. There are all kinds of rules associated with this procedure on how to make the defects known. The Huurteam can support you with this, so don’t wait too long.
This is a difficult question. Some defects are in any case for the tenant to replace, such as minor maintenance. In case of major maintenance, the landlord is responsible for this. If he doesn’t, you can put him in default and fix it yourself. You can think of deducting the costs from the basic rent. However, this entails many risks. What if something goes wrong? What if you don’t repair it properly or have it repaired? Who is responsible then?
If you are concerned with this, please contact us.
A renovation of the house can have consequences for your rental contract, rent and service costs. Renovation is one of the reasons for terminating a lease, but there are guidelines that a landlord must adhere to. The landlord must be able to demonstrate that the renovation is necessary (for example, if the foundation is very poor). If it concerns a complex, the landlord must demonstrate that 70% of the residents want to move and agree with the plans, or else the landlord must request permission from the court for the renovation. If the landlord only wants to refurbish and increase the rent, that’s no reason to cancel!
In addition, a tenant must give permission for a renovation. The landlord is not allowed to just install new floors, window frames, larger bathrooms, etc. to increase your rent. This is not a renovation or major maintenance, but a home improvement. Be sure to contact us if this is the case.
Deposit and other costs
The landlord must inspect the house beforehand to indicate how your home must be delivered and which defects you still need to repair. After the rental contract has been terminated and you have delivered your living space, the landlord must repay the deposit. If there are still defects, the landlord may settle this with the deposit. However, conflicts sometimes arise here because landlords do not act in the correct way or come up with new facts.
Landlord must adhere to these rules:
- An initial inspection before you move into the home or on the first day of moving into the living space. You should be there and receive confirmation of this inspection afterwards;
- An interim inspection when you indicate that you are going to leave the house. The landlord gives you proof of what you still need to repair before you leave the house;
- A final inspection in which the landlord points out what has not been repaired and for which he will withhold a deposit. You will also receive proof of this.
If the landlord has not carried out these inspections, no deposit may be withheld! If the landlord does not (fully) repay the deposit and you do not agree with this, the Huurteam will help you take the right steps in this regard.
We sometimes ask ourselves the same question… Mediation costs are costs that an intermediary asks to rent out a living space for the landlord. A landlord and/or intermediary may not pass this on to the tenant. However, this is often done. Brokerage costs are also often described differently, such as administration, advice, commission, brokerage or rental costs. In this case too, these are just mediation costs and the prohibition therefore applies.
You can reclaim mediation costs up to five years after payment. See also our downloads for a sample letter to reclaim these costs. If you need a lawyer for this, Huurteam can put you in touch with our network.
It happens that tenants settle their last month’s rent, outstanding service costs, etc. with the deposit. Legally speaking, this is not allowed, but there are landlords who do agree to this, especially after a final inspection which shows that the house is completely in order.
There are no statutory periods within which a landlord must return the deposit after the end of the rental contract. This is often stated in your rental agreement, but sometimes it is not. The usual term is 6 to 8 weeks after the end of the lease.
Do you doubt whether your landlord will refund your deposit or do you have to wait a long time? Please contact Huurteam Tilburg. We can write a letter to the landlord with the request to return the deposit. If difficulties arise, we are already involved and can support you further.