The collapse of tourism in Amsterdam in particular appears to have boosted the supply of rental homes in the city, but many are only being offered on leases lasting a few months.
The number of homes offered on the Pararius rental platform rose 5.4% in the second half of March, as the coronavirus epidemic halted Airbnb and other short-term rentals.
‘It could be that landlords who previously rented out their properties as short stay are now shifting to longer tenancies to limit their properties being empty,’ Pararius said.
‘And Pararius is also hearing from estate agents that tenancies are being cancelled by expats whose contracts have stopped,’ the company said. ‘Because jobs are being put on hold, it is no longer as easy to rent these properties to expats, which is boosting the overall rental supply.’
Legal experts point out that lets of less than six months are illegal, unless the property has a short-stay licence – which allows stays of between seven days and several months.
And Amsterdam councillor Dorrit de Jong (GroenLinks) has asked city officials to look into the reason for the rise in new rentals. ‘If these apartments were being illegally rented out, then the crisis offers us the opportunity to make sure the rules are being kept to,’ she said on Twitter.
A spokesman for housing alderman Laurens Ivens said that the city would be doing some random sampling to check what was being done with the properties before they were put up for rent.
Pararius expects landlords to remove properties from its website as things return to normal, and the holiday and short-stay sector pick up steam again.
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