Scrapping student grants means more stay at home

student hotelMore students are likely to study in their home towns and continue living with their parents now the government has scrapped student grants, according to research by student housing monitor group Kences.

Basic grants have been stopped for all but the poorest students from this year and students now have to borrow more money if they want to live in a different city.

The Kences research shows there is likely to be a 13,000 drop in the number of students in digs over the coming eight years, but this would have been an increase of 22,000 if grants were still available.

This means the shortage of student housing is likely to be less severe than expected. In Maastricht, for example, Kences forecasts an 18% decline in the demand for student housing.

There will also be 10% to 15% drops  in Arnhem, Breda, Groningen, Nijmegen, Tilburg and Utrecht. But demand will continue to increase in Amsterdam, where student housing is the most expensive in the country.

According to family spending institute Nibud, students who remain at home spend an average of €535 a month. Live-out students, by contrast, need €980 a month, including the cost of their accommodation.

Education minister Jet Bussemaker estimates that by scrapping grants, students will build up an average debt of €21,000 by the end of their degree course.

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