News of: Friday, October 09 2009,
Today, the city of Amsterdam revoked the license of Direct Wonen, the largest apartment agency in the Netherlands.
For Direct Wonen this means it can no longer operate in Amsterdam. Its operations outside Amsterdam are not affected.
Amsterdam revoked the license because Direct Wonen repeatedly violated the rules for legal apartment renting. Amsterdam says it rents out rent-controlled properties for too high prices, or rent out apartments without the consent of the owner.
Also, according to Amsterdam legislation, it has to check that a renter is allowed to occupy a rental property. In the case of cheap(er) housing, laws apply in the Netherlands as to how much rent can be charged. Also, your income can not be higher than a certain level to be allowed to occupy cheap rental properties.
Direct Wonen denies all accusations, and says it considers going to court to fight the decision.
Traditionally, there is a shortage of (cheap) residential properties in Amsterdam. Living in Amsterdam remains very popular, with locals and tourists alike. This has prompted the (mostly socialist/social democrat) city government to introduce all kinds of distribution rules.