Airbnb responsible for skyrocketing Amsterdam housing prices: ING

Renting out rooms to tourists through Airbnb can at least partly be blamed for the skyrocketing housing prices in Amsterdam and the increasing gap between rich and poor in the city, according to a study done by ING's Economic Bureau, Het Parool reports.

According to the bank, home sellers take extra income that can be made by renting rooms to tourists into account when setting a price. And home buyers are more willing to take out a bigger mortgage because of the extra money that can be earned.

A "conservative estimate" by the bank shows that houses or rooms can be rented out at 131 euros for 60 days in the year. That equates to an extra 655 euros gross a month, 353 net after deductions of costs and taxes. On this extra monthly income, home buyers can get almost 100 thousand euros more on their mortgage.

This gives a house another economic function - not only is it a place to live, but also a means of income - "literally and figuratively" increasing its worth, according to Senne Janssen of the Economic Bureau.

The result is that starter families can no longer afford a home in the city center, because they don't have enough starting capital. Which means that the gap between those who can and cannot afford a house in the city center, is getting increasingly wide.

A total of 11 thousand households, or rooms in households, in Amsterdam's tourist district are already being rented out via Airbnb. That is a sixth of all houses in the district.