Thursday 09 April 2020

The Hague to stop licencing flat shares in 10 city districts

Photo: Depositphotos.com

The Hague city council is to stop giving licences for formalised flat shares in 10 city districts in an effort to ‘relieve the pressure on the supply of cheaper housing’.

The number of licenced flat shares for four or more people doubled between 2018 and 2019 and the situation is so urgent that direct intervention is necessary, alderman Martijn Balster said.

‘We are facing a doom scenario in which small units are being rented out for ever increasing prices and this is a race to the bottom,’ Balster told local broadcaster Omroep West.

The ban on new licences applies in 10 areas where the average value of a home is below €165,000, including Zuiderpark, Transvaalwijk and the Schildersbuurt, Omroep West said.

The council is also looking at further measures to reduce the pressure on housing and aims to publish them by the summer.

These may include a ban on roof extensions to stop investors buying up cheap homes and making them bigger, and introducing a licencing system for landlords.

Amsterdam has already taken steps to stop unlicenced flat sharing in the city. In Amsterdam a licence is need for upwards of three people sharing an apartment. In The Hague licencing starts at four.

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