Verhalen landlord refuses to maintain the student house properly.

landlord refuses to maintain the student house properly.

Due to the tight housing market, tenants often find themselves in difficult situations. That’s why they sometimes settle for a house that doesn’t meet the requirements. At first glance, Ayda and her four housemates live in a typical Utrecht student house. However, upon closer inspection, it becomes evident that the house has not been properly maintained for many years.

In the bathroom, there are leaks and visible mold, and further down the house, the handrail on the stairs is loose. A window was broken and not properly repaired, leaving a permanent hole. Upstairs, the floor is rotted, and the window frames are also decaying. The longer you look around the house, the more issues you notice.

Ayda and her fellow tenants have sent numerous emails to the landlord, asking for the problems to be resolved, but he doesn’t respond to their complaints. “He is willing to increase the service charges by €120 per person, but we receive no service in return.”

The Renting Team is deployed by the municipality to address such issues. “In 2022, we visited 715 Utrecht homes. In 646 of these homes, there were problems. We’ve presented more than 400 cases to the Renting Commission, which is responsible for determining who is right,” says Tom from the Huur Team.

Ayda also reached out to the Renting Team, saying, “I’m very glad that the Renting Team exists. When you have problems in your rental home, it’s a complex issue. You can’t resolve it with just the Renting Commission. You need a lawyer, and that costs a lot of money.” And she can’t leave yet. “Yes, I’m stuck. The current housing market is too uncertain. I have to wait another 12 years for social housing. In other places, I’d be paying half of my salary in rent. It’s too expensive,” Ayda admits. She hopes that she can continue living there for a while if the problems are resolved.

However, due to bureaucratic rules and challenging evidence requirements, tenants don’t always succeed in proving their case. Tom also finds this frustrating at times but remains hopeful. “Since July 1, there’s a new law: the Good Landlordship Act. This gives municipalities more powers to intervene when landlords don’t follow the rules. Hopefully, municipalities will take advantage of this and start enforcing the rules.”

Did you know that your rent can be reduced by up to 70% if your landlord doesn’t perform major maintenance?

Learn more about maintenance.

Does your home have many issues, and is maintenance urgently needed? Contact the Huur Team!

Contact us.