Incentive for more mid-priced rental housing

The cabinet agreed today to amend the Spatial Planning Decree, so that municipalities will be able to include rental housing in the medium price bracket as a separate category in land-use plans. The amendment, an initiative of Minister of the Interior and Kingdom Relations Ronald Plasterk, will give municipalities more scope to increase their stock of this type of housing.

Municipalities can use their land-use plans to exert influence on the composition of the housing stock. They can already include special provisions for the categories social housing for rent and sale and self-build housing. This new category of deregulated, mid-priced rental dwellings will give the municipality greater scope to influence the housing market, for example in situations where it does not own land for housing development itself.

The amendment to the Spatial Planning Decree is part of a broad package of measures introduced by the government to increase the number of affordable rental homes for middle-income earners. After changes to the housing association system, for example, pension funds and investors identified new opportunities to invest in this sector. In the Amsterdam and Utrecht regions, the rent points system for calculating the maximum rent for a home has been adjusted, making studio apartments and other smaller dwellings available to middle-income tenants.

The government has also asked the former mayor of Eindhoven, Rob van Gijzel, to set up local roundtables to bring together local parties with the aim of reaching agreement on extra supplies of affordable rental homes for people with middle incomes.

The cabinet has agreed that the amendment to the Spatial Planning Decree should be sent to the Council of State for its advisory opinion.