Leasing: What types of tenancy agreements are there?

In general, two types of tenancy agreements can be distinguished: permanent and temporary tenancy agreements.

Permanent tenancy agreements are entered into for an indefinite period of time. Most tenancy agreements for housing are permanent tenancy agreements that are automatically extended after the initial lease term of one year.

It is, however, also possible to enter into a temporary tenancy agreement. Landlord and tenant can agree upon such a tenancy agreement for a fixed period that  terminates automatically and with less legal protection, provided that:

  • The term of the lease is a single, non-extendable period of time of up to two years (for a separate residential dwelling or space) or up to five years (for a room); and
  • The landlord gives written notice of the termination date somewhere between three months to one month in advance of the termination date.

If the tenancy continues after the fixed period or if the landlord does not give notice (in time), the tenancy automatically becomes a permanent tenancy agreement with full rent protection for the tenant.

In some cases the landlord may conclude a temporary tenancy agreement that is longer than two years, namely if the tenancy agreement includes a so-called diplomat clause.

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Related questions

  • Leasing: Can my landlord increase the rent?

    In principle, the lessor may increase the rent once every 12 months. A second rent increase within the same year is allowed only after improvements of the premises.

    The Dutch government annually sets a maximum percentage by which the rent may be increased for the non-liberalized (social) housing sector.

    This maximum rent increase is not applicable to the liberalized housing sector. If you have a non-liberalized tenancy agreement, this agreement usually stipulates which rent increase you can expect. You and your landlord are bound to the agreed rent increase and you, therefore, must pay this rent increase each year. However, if no such rent increase is included in your tenancy agreement, your landlord can propose a rent increase proposal. If you do not agree with the proposal, your landlord can go to court. The court may rule that the proposal is reasonable. In that case, you can either agree with the rent increase or your tenancy agreement will be terminated.

  • Leasing: What obligations do I have as a tenant? And what are my landlord’s obligations?

    The landlord’s main obligations are:

    • Making available the rented property
    • Ensuring that the rented property is free from defects
    • Repairing defects of the premises (unless this is impossible or requires an outlay which may not reasonably be required from the landlord in the given circumstances)

    The tenant’s main obligations are:

    • Paying rent
    • Using the rented property respectfully and in accordance with its purpose
    • At the end of the rental period: returning the rented property in the same condition in which it was accepted according to the description at the start of the rental period (unless agreed upon otherwise or if no description was made)
    • Making minor repairs
  • Buying: I have just bought a house and found a previously undetected defect. What can I do?

    If you buy a house, you have an obligation of inspection. As a buyer you must investigate whether there are any defects. The seller, on the other hand has an obligation to inform you of all defects known to him that prevent normal use of the property. Sometimes there are hidden defects that were present during the sale of the house, but of which you were unaware at the time. In principle, from the transfer of ownership onwards, any hidden defects will be for the buyer’s account.

    However, there are situations in which the seller can be held liable. For instance, if the defects are so serious that they do not allow normal use of house or if the seller has lied about defects or has tried to hide them.

    If you discover hidden defects, you must contact the seller as soon as possible. If the seller does not cooperate in remedying the defect, you can go to court to enforce this cooperation.