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Accommodation FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions about accommodation at VU Amsterdam.

Information for both students and staff can be found below.

Housing FAQs

  • Application

    Is it possible to reserve a specific room?
    It is not possible to reserve a specific room.

    Can I live on the campus?
    In Amsterdam, the whole city is your campus! VU Amsterdam doesn’t have one campus where all rooms are located. Our rooms are located within reachable distance of the university by bike or public transport. Check the 9292 route planner (for public transport) or Google Maps to find your way in Amsterdam.

    I want to live together with friends, is that possible?
    We offer accommodation with shared facilities, but it is unfortunately not possible to sign up together with a friend. It is possible that you both apply for housing separately, and choose a room near each other based on availability once you have access to the booking system. 

    What is the difference between our booking system and Room.nl?
    We work with the booking system room.nl, however we have a separate section within room.nl called “University Housing”. Within this section we upload the rooms we have available. You are able to apply on room.nl by yourself, but in this case you will not find the rooms we offer. This is only possible once you register through VU accommodation services. 

    I didn’t apply in time, can you still help me?
    We will try our utmost best to accommodate students that are in need of accommodation. However it is not possible to guarantee housing, due to the shortages of accommodation. The earlier you apply, the better the chances are of getting a room. 

    I applied but haven’t received further information yet, what to do?
    Once you have paid the housing fee, we will aim to contact you within two weeks with a confirmation e-mail that you are placed on the list for accommodation. If you haven’t received a confirmation within a few weeks, you can contact studentaccommodation@vu.nl.

    Is there a deadline to apply for housing?
    There is no deadline to apply for housing, however with the current housing situation, we can’t guarantee the availability of rooms. 

    Does VU Amsterdam arrange student housing for all international students? 
    It is not possible to accommodate all international students, as VU Amsterdam can only offer a limited number of rooms. This comes down to roughly half of the first year international students. Amsterdam remains a very popular city and affordable housing is difficult to obtain. Therefore, we encourage everyone to start in time, and look for accommodation independently, even if you already applied for the VU Amsterdam housing service.

    Is the first month rent or any other costs included in the housing fee?
    The housing fee does not include the first rent payment or any other costs. The housing fee is charged to cover our costs in providing accommodation services to international students.

  • Receiving a room offer

    Can I view any of the locations you offer?
    Due to privacy reasons, we don’t arrange viewings. To get a feel of how the room looks, you can look at this document for updated photos.

    What is included in the rent?
    Services costs (water, electricity, cable internet etc.) are included in the rental price. It depends on the housing provider whether utilities (e.g. kitchen package, bed linen) are included. You can find this in your rental contract. 

  • Signing the contract

    Can I extend my contract?
    Our rental contracts have a fixed start and end date. In some exceptional cases it is possible to extend your contract. You can contact us through email studentaccommodation@vu.nl

    Can I end my contract earlier if my study programme ends in June?
    As mentioned, we work with a fixed start and end date. It is not possible to terminate your contract earlier if your study program ends earlier. 

    The contract start date differs from the school's start date, can I come earlier?
    It is only possible to move in once your rental contract starts. If you would like to come to Amsterdam earlier, you will have to find accommodation individually. 

  • Miscellaneous

    What should I do about issues with roommates?
    If you are experiencing issues with your roommates, and you can’t come to a solution together. You can contact a student counsellor for help and advice. If you are situated in BOLD or Uilenstede you can contact one of the Resident Assistants in your building.

    What should I do about personal issues? 
    If you are dealing with personal or mental issues, it is important to ask for help. We opened a student wellbeing point where you can talk with fellow peers about your personal situation. Please have a look at the Student wellbeing webpage.

    Can I be added to the waiting list without having to apply?
    Normally we only help first year students, but due to the shortage on the housing market we are trying to find solutions for international students, regardless of your year. We can’t guarantee anything but we will add you to our emergency mailing list.

    How do I know when someone scams me?
    When searching for a room independently, it’s important that you use your common sense. If the offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is! You can find tips on avoiding housing scams in Amsterdam on the website of Iamsterdam

    Can I have a pet in my student room?
    No, pets are not allowed.

    I require a room equipped for special needs, what should I do?
    Please contact us via e-mail studentaccommodation@vu.nl should you require a room equipped for special needs.

    Due to COVID-19 I can’t come to Amsterdam, can I get a refund of the housing fee?
    If you can’t come to Amsterdam due to COVID-19, you are eligible for a refund of your housing fee. 

    How long is the waiting list/ what is my position on the waiting list?
    We won’t provide the specific numbers, as the waiting list is subject to change. 

  • Webinar

    On 19 April 2022, 12:00PM (CET) we hosted a webinar about the Dutch housing market, IO housing service and we have answered frequently asked questions live during the Q&A with experiences and knowledge from current students. Please watch the recording of this webinar here

Staff

  • Application

    I will be a guest/ PhD at VU Amsterdam. How can I apply for housing?
    You will receive an application form by e-mail. You can only apply for accommodation arranged via VU Amsterdam if your nationality is from outside the Netherlands.

    When should I apply for housing?
    We advise guests to apply for housing as soon as possible (4 up to 6 months before the start date of your contract) Please note that you will always be placed on the waiting list.

  • Types of accommodation

    What is the difference between Short Stay and Long Stay housing?
    Short Stay housing has a maximum rental period of 12 months. Short Stay rooms are available for VU Asterdam mguests/ visitors/ PhD students, while Long Stay housing (max. rent 5 years) is only meant for the PhD students who are taking their doctoral degree at VU Amsterdam.

    Can I apply for both short stay and long stay housing?
    PhD students may apply for both types of housing at the same time. Note: the current waiting time for a long stay is around 18 months, hence we never guarantee you a long stay on time!

    What is the difference between single and double studio?
    Most of the studios that we offer are single ones. Therefore it is not allowed to live there with your partner. However, there is a number of double studios available (bigger studios with a double bed). Those are only meant for couples. Note: they are very limited available!

    Can my partner stay with me in my single studio?
    Single studios are meant for one person only. Obviously, short visits are allowed; however, this does not mean that you could live with someone else in the single studio. They will not be allowed to register on the address.

    Are you allowing families with kids?
    Yes, but only in Short Stay accommodation. We have a very limited number of apartments meant for families with children. Please, have a look at “Atrium” building. Please note that the waiting time for such an apartment is very long and cannot be guaranteed.

  • Offers

    When will Short Stay accommodation be offered to me?
    We aim to offer you a room by e-mail two months before your arrival date.

    I was placed on a waiting list for long stay housing. How long will it take to get an offer?
    It might take up to a couple of years to get a Long Stay offer. This is why we advise our PhD candidates to apply for Long Stay as early as possible and also search for an alternative option themselves!

    Can I choose the room by myself?
    On the application form you are asked to indicate your preferences. Based on this information we will do our best to assign you the room that matches your expectations, however, we cannot guarantee that we can place you in your preferred option. 

  • Payments

    How much is the VU Amsterdam housing fee?
    For rental periods less than 6 months, we charge a €250 housing fee. For rental periods that are longer than 6 months and up till 12 months, we charge a €500 housing fee. This fee is only charged once we have been able to find accommodation for you. You will receive more information about it when we confirm your accommodation. For PhD students, the housing fee is €500 for the complete period of the rental contract.

    The housing corporation sent me an invoice for the administration fee. However, I have already paid the housing fee to VU Amsterdam. Are these fees the same?
    No, these are two separate payments. The VU Amsterdam housing fee is paid to the university, the administration fee it paid to the housing corporation.

    Is the housing fee actually a deposit? Will I get it back?
    No, you are not receiving the housing fee back. Only if you cancelled your housing application before one-month due to notice period your housing fee will be refunded.

    How much do I need to pay before arrival?
    First you need to pay the VU Amsterdam housing fee. Once you sent the VU Amsterdam accommodation department a proof of payment, we will upload your personal details in the portal of the housing corporation and they will send you an email regarding the first payment. You will be asked to pay the administration fee as well as the rent of 1 month.

    I cannot afford guest housing. Can I apply for the student room?

    Student rooms are meant for students only and most of the time they are fully booked. You can always indicate your budget limitation.

  • Moving in

    Where can I pick up my keys?
    You can pick up your keys at the DUWO office. Their address is Uilenstede 108, Amstelveen.

    When can I get my keys?
    DUWO is open on Monday from 13.00 to 17.00 and Tuesday-Friday from 09.00 to 17.00. If you arrive during the weekend, you will have to book an additional hotel/ hostel room. Please note that your contract starts on the 1st or 16th of the month. If this is during the weekend, you can pick up your keys at the DUWO office on Monday from 13.00 onwards. 

    Can I extend my contract?
    Yes, it is possible to extend your Short Stay rental agreement, if you have not signed a contract for 12 months yet. Short Stay housing has a maximum rental period of 12 months. Please let us know at least three months in advance.

  • Moving out

    Can I shorten my contract?
    Yes, after your arrival you can decide to shorten your contract. Please, contact accommodation@vu.nl at least one month in advance.

    Can I terminate my rental contract?
    Yes, you can terminate your rental contract with a one month notice.

  • General

    Can I keep pets in my room?
    No, it is not allowed to have pets in your studio/apartment.

    Am I allowed to sublet my room/apartment via AirBnB or similar platforms?

    No, this is not allowed. . The housing corporations standard policy upon discovery is immediate termination of the tenancy agreement. We and the housing corporations will impose a zero tolerance policy. So if you are caught in subletting your apartment via AirBnB or similar platforms, your tenancy agreement will  be terminated and a fine will be imposed.

Contact

Feel free to reach out to us

In case you would like to meet up with us to discuss your accommodation, please call us at T +31 (0)20 598 1813 (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday between 10.30-12.30 AM) to schedule an appointment or schedule a phone call in our online tool.

E-mail address student accommodation: studentaccommodation@vu.nl

E-mail address staff accommodation: staffaccommodation@vu.nl

Contact

  • Michelle Zumbrink
  • Accommodation Officer
  • Clair Streckfuss
  • Accommodation Officer
  • Amber Bonsee
  • Accommodation Officer