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Overbidding increasingly common in Amsterdam rental housing market

Overbidding is now also becoming the norm in Amsterdam’s rental housing market. In about half of the cases, landlords ask potential tenants to offer more than the asking price or pay a once-off amount to qualify for a home, the Association of Rental Agents Amsterdam (VVA) told Parool.

It usually doesn’t involve “appalling amounts,” Patrick Smolders of the VVA said. “But we find the phenomenon worrying. People will start bidding against each other.” That could drive up prices in the already expensive private sector, further reducing the accessibility to affordable housing.

The Woonbond, the interest group for tenants, has long been worried about outbidding in the rental housing market. It doesn’t have precise figures but believes the practice is becoming increasingly common. “Our experience is that people would rather live too expensively than not have a home at all. We see the outbidding as an argument for introducing a maximum rent for all rental properties,” a spokesperson said to Parool.

According to the Woonbond, overbidding seems to mainly occur with smaller, private landlords. “There is probably not much that can be done about this with legislation. The bidding often happens behind the scenes. No matter what you do, you will never be able to eradicate it completely.”

Overbidding on a rental home is not illegal in the private sector, which doesn’t have a point system to determine the rent like social housing does. Private sector landlords can charge what they want.

https://nltimes.nl/2023/10/06/overbidding-increasingly-common-amsterdam-rental-housing-market Overbidding increasingly common in Amsterdam rental housing market

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