New rules for renting your house in Amsterdam to tourists
In these times of crisis it is certainly convenient to have a spare room that you can rent to tourists or turn into a B&B.
Thanks to the now worldwide website Airbnb more and more people in Amsterdam are turning their spare room, or house, into a small revenue. Unfortunately the Dutch government has settled new laws that will prevent that and at a very high cost to the people who do not follow the new rules.
Rooms or houses rented to tourists are considered "illegal hotels." Since February 2013, 25 apartments-hotels have already been closed for safety reasons.
The Stadsdeel Centrum and the dienst Wonen, Zorg en Samenleven (Housing, Welfare & Community Service) of Amsterdam are working together to locate these illegal hotels in the city of Amsterdam, based on the fact that there are not enough safety regulations for tourists (for ex. in case of fire or burglary) in such illegal premises.
They also take away houses and rooms that should be allocated to social housing, an already strained sector considering the demand for such housing. The penalties for using your house as hotel or Bed & Breakfast are thus quite severe, with fines starting at a minimum of 12.000 euros and, if caught again, rising to 18.500 euros.
So, do people who want to rent their house for just once or twice per year need to worry about this? The Gemeente is going to focus on those establishments that are suspected to be illegal hotels, that is, those that rent the premises all year round. They’re going to work on a list of addresses that comes from different sources, including internet booking sites.
Recently, a conversation took place between municipal officer Ossel and booking site Airbnb. Amongst the topics discussed was the issue of how landlords should be aware of the rules in Amsterdam.