Student accommodation on the waiting list is often longer than the duration of the course

Student accommodation on the waiting list is often longer than the duration of the course

This is evident from the RTL Nieuws analysis. The research editors looked at homes that had been rented from social student housing providers in the past three months and the length of the enrollment period.

In a number of student cities, the waiting time is so long that students who have completed their first studies without delay are almost no longer eligible.

Jolan DB, director of the umbrella organization for student housing providers Kinsey, was shocked by the numbers. “It is too bad that the waiting period is so long. This indicates that there is a huge housing shortage for students and this needs to be resolved quickly.”

Seven years waiting in Leiden

Anyone wishing to rent from the housing association in Leiden must have an average registration period of six years and nine months, according to data from the ROOM rental platform. There is no other student city where the waiting time is so high.

Also in Amsterdam, Delft and Wagengen, students were registered in a room or studio for five to five and a half years. In Utrecht, this was four years and three months for the room.

Check the map below to see how long you have to wait in your student city.

Waiting time for each city

These are the average waiting times. There are also students who find a room with less or more check-in time. The waiting period in Utrecht is not less than two and a half years. The longest recording time here was over ten years, according to the numbers. In recent months, no rooms have been rented to students with less than four years of enrollment in Leiden.

National Action Plan

To address the housing shortage, the Cabinet, in cooperation with housing associations, private investors, municipalities and educational institutions, came up with a national action plan last September. By 2030, 60,000 affordable student housing should be built.

Between 2022 and 2024, 37,500 resilient homes must be built at an accelerated pace.

National platform for room rental

According to De Bie, it is important to register early with the housing association to increase your chances of finding a room during your studies. This is possible from the age of sixteen. In practice, it appears that many students only enroll at a later age. Bee SSH student housing has an average age of nineteen years.

This is because sixteen-year-olds do not yet know in which city they want to study or if it is possible to register in advance. In order to distribute opportunities more equitably, Kences is currently working on an accessible national platform. “Soon everyone will be able to register in one place for all student cities and social housing providers.”

Kences hopes to offer this enrollment platform in the next or upcoming academic year. But actually registering with one of the affiliates of this platform really pays off. Then take the time to sign up with you to the new platform.

Waiting list canceled

There are also housing associations that work on it differently. For example, SSH&, which is active in Arnhem and Nijmegen, canceled the waiting list in 2020 and opted for the lottery system. The accommodation provider does this to allow each student to have a room or gallery of student housing. According to SSH &, allocation systems based on wait times are complex and outdated.

In Enschede, Tilburg and Breda there is also a lottery for rooms, only for studio or apartment you have to be registered for a longer period of time.

Moving is not easy

After graduation, young people have to leave the student residence. If they wanted to move into social housing, they again faced long waiting lists.

In order to improve productivity, youth contracts were introduced five years ago. This would make it easier to find a home. But waiting times for private youth housing are also very long.

Youth housing is for young people up to the age of 28. Figures from the Woningnet website show that young people in Zeist need the longest registration period: an average of nine years and nine months. Amsterdam followed by seven years and ten months.


For this analysis, RTL Nieuws made use of data provided by online student housing providers. In it, housing associations submit a report on the basis on which the house was allocated and the term of registration of the final resident. To calculate the enrollment period, we left out all rooms and dorms where there was an order of priority, urgency, mediation or placement for international students.

We used the housing association numbers of ROOM, Klik voor Rooms, Roomspot and Woonnet Haaglanden. We have received an overview from the social housing provider SSH and Lieven de Key.

The room does not distinguish in its justification between independent and non-independent rooms. This is why we only mention the total waiting time for a number of student cities.

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