100,000 rental properties may go if rent controls are extended

Photo: Hanneke Sanou

Real estate consultancy group CBRE expects at least 100,000 rental homes will be sold off if the government presses ahead with plans to extend the rent control system to cover 90% of the country’s housing stock. 

In time, 21,000 rental homes in Amsterdam will be sold, CBRE estimates, as small landlords decide it is no longer profitable, so reducing the options for people who want or need to rent.

The rent controls, if approved in parliament, mean some apartments in the capital will drop from around €1,700 for a 60 square metre property to below €1,000, the advice group says. 

Landlords are already selling off homes because of higher property taxes and more rent controls will encourage even more to do so, CBRE said in a new report. 

CBRE says it expects the number of rental properties in private hands to go down by about 100,000 to 651,400 in the next 20 years because sales are only an option if the tenant has left or buys the property themselves. 

Housing minister Hugo de Jonge said earlier he expects the legal rent on some 300,000 rental homes will be cut by an average of €190 a month when controls are extended and new tenants move in.

He has also said he is not concerned about rental properties being sold off because it will give more people the opportunity to buy. 

Private landlord lobby group Vastgoed Belang said it is dealing with an increasing number of inquiries from owners who say they have to sell their property. “It is becoming impossible for the private landlord who has an apartment as a pension,” said spokesman Kavish Partiman. “The big investors will survive because they fall under a different tax regime.”

Most houses are disappearing in Almere, Amersfoort and Zaanstad because these are places where tenancies tend to be shorter. CBRE estimates that the number of rental homes that will disappear in the biggest cities at about 20% of the total. 

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