Labor party wants strict home rent increase limit in private sector

The PvdA submitted a bill to limit rent increases in the private sector to a maximum of inflation plus 1 percent per year. This goes further than the proposal by Minister Kasja Ollongren of Home Affairs, which stated that free sector rents can increase by inflation plus 2.5 percent, RTL Nieuws reports.

Ollongren's proposal still allows for too high increases, PvdA parliamentarian Henk Nijboer said to the broadcaster. "Then tenants will still have to deal with an increase of more than 5 percent and that is far too much," he said. 

Private sector rents have skyrocketed over the past years, especially in the large cities, Nijboer said. "In principle, landlords are allowed to increase rents indefinitely. Increases of hundreds of euros are no exception," he said. According to the PvdA, real estate owners and slumlords are taking advantage of this and the housing shortage. "Tenants have nowhere to go. Many people wonder if they can still afford their rent next year."

"Minister Ollongren investigates and talks, but does nothing at all. No law has yet been introduced. That's is wy I came up with an initiative law myself. The housing shortage must not become a revenue model," Nijboer said. 

At the end of last year, Nijboer tabled a motion to curb rents in the private sector and it received support from a large majority in the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament. He hopes this same majority will also support his bill.