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The Municipal Executive of the Municipality of The Hague has decided to ban housing and room rental via online platforms such as Airbnb. This rule will apply until at least the end of this year and is related to a bill for tourist rental in 2021.

This decision was prompted by the ruling of the highest administrative court, the Administrative Jurisdiction Division of the Council of State, at the beginning of 2020. A woman from Amsterdam was fined after renting her home to tourists without reporting that to the authorities. The discussion revolved around the question whether a municipality should be allowed to independently make exceptions to the Housing Act for the rental of holiday homes via online platforms such as Airbnb. According to the Council of State, the construction that Amsterdam used to curb housing rental was not legally valid, because the current Housing Act does not provide municipalities any authority to grant an exemption from the withdrawal permit.

Just like in Amsterdam, The Hague suffers from a large housing shortage. However, there were also exceptions for online platforms such as Airbnb in The Hague, allowing short-term room- or home rental for a limited number of people. Due to the decision of the Council of State, the municipality was no longer allowed to make these exceptions. Although the Housing Act provides municipalities with the option of issuing a withdrawal permit for such room- or house rental, The Hague has opted to waive this option and to wait until January 2021 when the new tourist rental law will most likely come into effect.

Opinions on the decision of the municipality of The Hague are divided. One might wonder why The Hague completely abandons a licensing system. Especially in these times of crisis, in which the Netherlands is in the grip of the COVID-19 virus (better known as the corona virus), a little extra income can be good for Airbnb hosts.

Questions?

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We strive for completeness in our reporting but cannot guarantee this because developments follow each other at a rapid pace. The Dutch government regularly comes up with additions to or improvements of (new) regulations. As a result, our reports may be outdated at the time you read them. That is why we mention the date and time of posting with each message.