ROTTERDAM, 31 August 2023 – A new dawn in the rental market is set as Rotterdam launches 'Eerlijk te Huur,' an innovative housing platform designed to combat discrimination. The platform allows prospective tenants to apply anonymously for rental properties, marking a significant step towards fair housing.
Addressing Housing Discrimination
Housing discrimination (Woondiscriminatie) has been identified as a growing issue. Dutch law prohibits landlords from selecting tenants based on characteristics such as origin, gender, nationality, or religion. However, studies show that applicants with non-Dutch sounding names are 23% less likely to be invited for a viewing.
Alderman Chantal Zegers, responsible for Building and Living, expressed her concerns about the issue. “It's unacceptable,” she said. “No one should be excluded from the housing market based on their background. Equal opportunities in housing are a fundamental right.”
How 'Eerlijk te Huur' Works
The 'Eerlijk te Huur' platform operates simply. Candidates register through a secure vault, creating a personal 'Woonpaspoort' that includes details like income and household composition. The developer then verifies the information to ensure its accuracy. Following this, anyone can anonymously apply for a property.
A Model for Other Cities
The pilot scheme is a crucial step in implementing the Law of Good Landlordship and is being closely monitored by other municipalities and the Ministry of the Interior. If successful, the methodology is expected to be adopted in other locations.
“The pilot has been made possible through a strong collaboration with the Platform of Private Landlords in Rotterdam (PPVR),” Zegers added. The PPVR is providing an initial 200 properties, ensuring a robust start. Notably, about 60% of these properties fall under social housing. Registration is open from 1 September via eerlijktehuur.nl.