Tips, tricks and important matters
Finding housing in Utrecht can be difficult and has its own typicalities. Below you can find important things to be aware of and tips and tricks on how to deal with this. The International Service Desk can support your search by providing you with answers to questions about housing, and more practical questions about your stay in the Netherlands.
Finding housing takes time and effort
Due to the high demand for (affordable) housing in and around Utrecht searching on your own can take up time and effort. Take this in consideration and start your search several months prior to your arrival. An added difficulty can be that landlords will usually want to meet with you. Consider an early arrival in order to attend the viewings and meet with agencies. Also, consider accepting temporary housing at first from where you can continue your search to a more permanent place to stay.
You are not the only candidate
There are usually numerous people who respond to each ad. The advertiser commonly selects a number of candidates for a viewing from the respondents, which can be quite competitive. Ads are also not always up to date and may already be rented out. Because of this, keep responding to numerous ads and don’t be too picky! We also advise not to limit yourself to just one or two housing websites but subscribe and check multiple sites and pages.
Search in surrounding towns and cities
To increase your chances make sure to also include the surrounding municipalities and cities in your search. Municipalities such as De Bilt, Zeist, Bunnik, Houten, Nieuwegein, IJsselstein, Woerden and Maarssen are within cycling distance to the university. Larger cities like Amersfoort, Hilversum, Amsterdam, Arnhem, Rotterdam and The Hague can be easily reached with public transportation.
The average rent in and around Utrecht can be quite high. When you enter into a rental agreement you usually pay additional several fees, a downpayment or a deposit, and administrative costs. On top of that, these fees are usually excluding gas, electrics, water and local taxes. It is important to calculate a realistic housing budget in advance. Because landlords and agencies usually request proof that you can afford the monthly rent and service fees, also gather documentation such as proof of income, savings or a rent guarantor before your departure.
Avoid scams and fake offers
Unfortunately, some people will try to take advantage of the high demand for housing in and around Utrecht by advertising fake offers. If you are in doubt about the reliability of an offer please do not hesitate to contact us for advice.