Student housing shortage 20% worse; 26,500 students still looking for home
Some 26,500 students are still looking for a place to stay, reports knowledge center Kences. In one year, the student housing shortage increased by 4,500.
Over the next eight years, the number of students seeking accommodation will increase by an estimated 57,000, mainly due to a higher influx of international students. The number of (Dutch) university students is also growing, and they are more likely to live in rooms than HBO students.
By 2025, the student housing supply in the Netherlands will increase by 16,500 according to current construction plans, Kences said. "Even if all these student residences are built, the shortage of student housing will rise sharply," said Jolan de Bie, director of the knowledge center. "Students don't always go to their first choice because the institution is too far away from their parental home and the chance of getting a room is small. This means a waste of motivation and talent." Kences cannot yet estimate how many student residences will be built after 2025.
Students who do not have a room often stay with acquaintances, in hotels, with other students, or even with lecturers, said De Bie. According to Kences, students who did manage to get a room spend an increasing part of their income on rent.
Stories about housing shortages for students have come from various cities over the past weeks. The municipality of Groningen decided to keep its emergency shelter locations for students open until the end of the year. Typically, the highest housing shortage in Groningen is solved by mid-October. In several cities, including Maastricht and Amsterdam, action groups try to help students find temporary accommodation.
According to the National Student Union (LSVb), the shortage and rising rents limit students' personal development. Chairman Ama Boahene: "Living in a room during your student days is an important step in developing independence and a social life. Students are now denied that: a room is impossible for many or simply unaffordable." The LSVb advocates a special 'student housing fund' to solve the problem.
Reporting by ANP