First: proposal widening options for temporary letting adopted
In the first half of 2021, a bill was passed, which included broadening the possibilities for temporary letting of living space. This legislative amendment was the result of a motion passed in the House of Representatives. The amendment includes:
- Extension of the maximum rental period from two to three years.
- One-off possibility to extend a temporary lease within the limits of the (new) maximum rental period.
- The possibility to agree on a minimum duration for temporary contracts.
During discussion of this bill in the Senate, there appeared to be objections to the amendment proposed and adopted in the Lower House. The Senate was of the opinion that the ‘Wet doorstroming huurmarkt’ (Housing Transition Act) should first be properly evaluated before the law would be amended. In short, the proposal was premature, according to the Senate.
The bill that was the subject of the motion did eventually pass the Senate, so other parts of it could pass. As a result, the widening of possibilities for temporary letting would in principle enter into force on 1 January 2022. However, that would be undesirable, given the criticism from the Senate and other civil society organisations.
After criticism: still cancelled
To meet the criticism of the Senate, responsible minister Ollongren has sent a proposal for a repair bill to parliament. The repair law includes the cancellation of the part of the adopted law dealing with temporary rental of living space.
The question was whether the Senate would be able to deal with the repair bill on time. That succeeded; on 22 December 2021, the Senate passed the repair law. As of 1 January, two laws will enter into force: the original law with an extension of the possibilities for temporary letting and a second law that will immediately abolish this extension. At the bottom line, nothing will change for temporary leases. This will be the subject of a broader evaluation of the Flushing of the Rental Market Act. To be continued, but not just yet.