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News of: Monday, February 17 2014,

Amsterdam allows renting homes to tourists

Amsterdam has given in to the growing pressure of the market: home owners are now allowed to rent out their apartment to tourists.

Amsterdam has long been fighting the phenomenon of people renting out their apartment(s) to tourists. This was a problem because, effectively, many buildings that were meant to be residential were converted into hotels.

To accommodate the market for so-called 'sharing' initiatives (such as AirBnb), Amsterdam introduced yet another category to the regulation landscape: 'particuliere vakantieverhuur' ('private vacation rental'). Other categories are 'Bed and breakfast', hotel and 'short-stay apartment'.

Really, under the new rules, not much has changed. Effectively changing a home into a hotel will remain illegal. With the new category, Amsterdam legalizes what it already was forced to tolerate.
Owners will be allowed to rent a complete apartment to tourists, but there are conditions:

- the owner must live in and be officially registered at the property he rents out
- the property can only be rented to tourists for about 2 months per year
- the maximum number of guests is 4
- there must be permission to rent to tourists by the property owner (in case the apartment is a rental property), by the fire brigade and by the homeowners association (in case of apartment buildings, which is almost always the case in Amsterdam).
- the person renting out must pay income and tourist tax

What has now become written into rules, was already effectively allowed by the city of Amsterdam. Amsterdam's priority laid mainly with illegal hotels run in entire apartment buildings, officially residential, but actually only rented out to tourists.

The new rules seek to facilitate companies such as Wimdu and AirBnb (which has applauded the new move by Amsterdam).

Apartment ad on door in Warmoesstraat

Apartment ad on door in Warmoesstraat