Private rent often too high, Hague says
3 May 2006, AMSTERDAM — Many tenants were paying too much for private rental accommodation in The Hague last year, according to the City Council.
3 May 2006
AMSTERDAM — Many tenants were paying too much for private rental accommodation in The Hague last year, according to the City Council.
The city's Huurteam (Rent Team) investigated 300 properties and in three quarters of these cases the tenants were paying too much rent. The Huurteam was created in April 2004 and has investigated 440 homes since then. All tenants in The Hague can call upon its services free of charge to verify if their rent is justified.
The rent in most cases was judged to be too high because the apartments were in need of repair or because of a technical problem. In one third of the cases investigated, the landlord had awarded the home more quality points than is allowed when calculating the rent.
The Huurteam meets a real need for people on low incomes in particular, The Hague said. The team has so far referred 95 cases to the Huurcommissie (Rent Commission). The commission has the power to order a permanent reduction in the rent, but often it requires a temporary reduction until essential repair work is carried out.
"The need for the Huurteam is clear. Many more people are coming to the team and that is a good thing. In this way we can keep an eye on private landlords," Alderman Marnix Norder said.
Based on feedback from tenants, the municipality has decided to keep the Huurteam operating through 2007.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]
Subject: Dutch news