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The campus system does not exist in the Netherlands. Students must find their own accommodation.

Utrecht has the housing problems of any major city in Europe. This means that not everyone can live in the city centre close to the buildings of HKU. Most students live in a radius of about 20 minutes (by bike) from school. Rents in Utrecht vary between € 375 to € 700 per month. However, due to a shortage of student housing, it is not uncommon to pay more than €1000 per month.

Housing options

These are the most common types of student housing:

  • Students houses where each student has their own room and you share the bathroom and kitchen.
  • Student housing with single or shared rooms and shared facilities.
  • Landlord or host family. Students rent one room and share the kitchen and bathroom with the owner of the house.

Finding student housing

Here are some tips and suggestions when looking for housing. Pay attention to the following aspects before deciding on a room:

  • Is it a room in someone's house or will you be sharing with other tenants?
  • Can you access your own room easily, or do you need to first go through someone else's room?
  • Are there cooking facilities?
  • Are there decent sanitary facilities?
  • Does the rent include gas, water and electricity?
  • Is the room worth the price? There is a statutory points system that sets maximum rents for rooms. Visit the Dutch government website for important information on this subject.
  • Will you receive a proper rental contract / agreement?

Watch out for swindlers and landlords with hidden motives (very infamous real etate owners are Betty Chang and Marcel van Hooijdonk). If you have any doubts, contact the Huurteam Utrecht or Vidius. Whatever you do, always ask for a receipt when you pay a deposit or rent.


The Dutch Government has setup an informative website in English on rental prices and what you can do if these are too high. You can also check this on the website normalehuur.nl.


More tips for finding student housing

What is hospiteren?

Hospiteren is a system used in many Dutch student houses to find a new housemate. Current occupants invite people responding to their advertisement for an introduction. The housemates then decide which person would best fit in their home. Generally you will be asked a number of questions about your hobbies, education, sports or other habits.


Be yourself and ask questions as well. It is an excellent opportunity to find out if the room and housemates suit you.


Please check the ISIC website for tips and information on hospiteren.

Rental Agreement

Did you find a room? A rental agreement will offer you some protection and is binding for both parties. Without a rental agreement you basically have unofficial accommodation. This will give problems when you attempt to register at City Hall. This can also have negative consequences for your residence permit and your HKU enrolment.

Rent benefit

Do you live in a rented house in the Netherlands? If so, you may be entitled to rent benefit. This is a contribution towards your rental costs. Tenants can apply for housing benefit if their rent in relation to their inocome is too high. You must comply to some conditions, such as: you are 18 years of age or older and you rent independent accommodation.


You can apply for rent benefit via the Dutch tax authorities de Belastingdienst.

Address registration

All foreign students with a stay longer than 4 months must be registered at a Dutch address by September. As soon as you have found housing it is important to register at your local City Hall (BRP).

Please note: to register as an inhabitant you need to show a passport, a rental contract and a birth certificate.

Students with a stay shorter than 4 months need to register as a non-resident at the RNI desk. You will receive a BSN number after registration.

More information on address registration