With September comes the never ending problem: where are all these students going to live? I remember July when my friends and I were sitting behind a hot cup of coffee discussing how picky we will be in the upcoming year about our landlords. “No more restricted showers”, “No more messy roommates”, “I will live closer to University”. All of our heroism disappeared when we found ourselves on the 3rd of September still commuting from The Hague every morning at 9 am. “A floor and a washing machine will do!” became our premise.
All jokes aside, the student housing problem has become a real issue. You can of course pay ridiculous amounts of money to different companies designed to find you a place to live, but it should not be this expensive. This leaving out the times when you pay and they tell you they cannot find something in the city you wish to live in but the money is nonrefundable because you signed so in the contract.
There are of course alternatives. On websites such as www.kamernet.nl, www.housinganywhere.com or www.perfectrent.nl, you can search yourself everyday but not even all the filters in the world are guaranteed to find you a well located and affordable room. There are many communities on social media websites where strangers offer you a good deal, but ask anyone and they will at least know someone that got scammed.
Moreover, once you encounter a good apartment that suits your every needs, the landlord answers to your email 2 weeks later telling you that they do not rent to students for income reasons. All of this frustration leads to desperation. Desperation pushes people into stupid things such as renting a room in the bad part of town. ( Nobody wants to live there apparently. I do and I see nothing wrong with it. We have a big park.)
The negative effects of this intense search reflect on their work at school. If I have to either take a train (and pray to God that it comes on time) or keep moving around from friend to friend that cannot mean straight 10’s.
This being said I believe University websites do not help their target audience as much as they should. The student accommodations on campuses are only available for first year students or exchange, so what about the rest of us? Some get lucky and some don’t, but the goal should be minimizing the amount of people that don’t. First helpful ideas that pop to mind are either a dorm especially made for students of the University of all years or a website where landlords that accept us can post their verified accommodations. What would really improve the situation would be a group(on social media or through official channels) where former students that finished their study can pass on their rooms to the next generations.
Maybe this way we can demand “A floor, a washing machine and everything else”.
a student that didnt get the job even though her article was on point.