How to find student accommodation in the Netherlands

This can be a little different from the British university experience so we have asked some students to comment on their experience when looking for a room in the Netherlands.

When did you apply for accommodation in the Netherlands? How did you go about finding it?

Students' advice

"The housing office offered the closest thing to student halls for me, and I had only heard good things about them. I would not have looked elsewhere if I had another chance. I was lucky enough to have my first choice housing, living with 43 people and it has been great here. Applying was pretty smooth, they are always willing to email and help you out. Administrative fees are quite expensive. Looking elsewhere for housing, I wouldn't look further than the facebook page "free housing in groningen" or , both very student orientated, and help to network and find cheap places"

"For me this was relatively straight forward. I already had some Dutch friends before I moved here so the three of us got a place together. I did come over in the July before I started in the September to try and start finding a place. Although there is plenty of help out there, for instance ,  (both available in English) and also estate agents can be really helpful (Maxx vast goed, Rots vast goed to name a couple)."

"I did not apply for accommodation, I always rented privately. Otherwise the obvious way to find a room is through the Housing Office. If you are interested in private accommodation, then there are multiple sites on Facebook (e,g. Roomshare Groningen, Rooms in Groningen, Free housing announcements in Groningen (for students), etc...) I merely arrived here at the end of August and roamed the streets going from estate agent to estate agent in combination with looking online ( - although if you leave it as late as I did, you can forget kamernet)."

"I applied for accommodation via the university. This was at the beginning of July. I just had to apply via a website and say how much money I was willing to pay."

Our advice

Applying for accommodation can be a bit of a headache, particularly in cities such as Amsterdam, Groningen and Utrecht. However, there are many students in all cities so there is quite a high turnover of available accommodation each year but those students who are most organised will be able to access the best opportunities.

Most universities do not have their own extensive housing options and very few actually guarantee rooms to new, international students. Some universities act as landlords on behalf of their students and block book a number of flats and rooms for students who have requested accommodation before a certain deadline. The university then sublets rooms to those students and takes responsibility for handling the relationship with the owner of the property.

University housing offices in the Netherlands typically charge a fee of around EUR 300 for finding a room. We have met several students who didn’t want to pay this fee and found rooms by themselves. Almost all of them have later told us that this was a false economy.

University colleges are residential so accommodation on campus is provided and students are required to live there.

In general, if you apply for accommodation in May to July, you should have no problems. If you leave it later than that there could be difficulties in the most popular student cities.

About Study In Holland is an information service designed to assist British and Irish students in pursuing their university education in the Netherlands.

We have extensive knowledge of English-taught degrees in Holland and we also work with careers advisory services. is owned by A Star Future Ltd and is not affiliated with the Dutch government.