Some 1.3 million people in the Netherlands are claiming housing benefit to help pay their rent, a rise of over 300,000 on 10 years ago, according to finance ministry figures, quoted by website Nu.nl.
Housing benefit is paid to low income families living in social housing, which means the rent cannot be more than €710 a month. To claim, the household income must be less than €30,000 and families can have no more than €24,400 in assets. This year, a low income couple can claim a maximum of €293.
Most request were made in Rotterdam, where 14 in every 100 people claim the benefit. Heerlen, Groningen, Leeuwarden and Delft also have far more claimants than the average local authority area, Nu.nl says.