Huurdersvereniging Zwartewaterwiede

Temporary rent discount in case of decreased income

Temporarily lower the rent if your income suddenly plummets, this is possible due to the new Temporary Rent Discount Act. Landlords can temporarily lower or freeze rents, but the tenant must ask for this himself.

It is indeed possible to apply for a temporary rental discount. This is due to the Temporary Rent Discount Act, which came into effect on April 1, 2021. Thanks to this law, landlords can temporarily lower the rent. 'Freezing' means: no annual rent increase. After the temporary rent reduction or rent freeze, the landlord may bring the rent back to the old level.

The legislator hopes that more landlords will give temporary rent discounts to tenants who are temporarily in trouble, because the reduction does not have to be permanent. Both housing associations and commercial landlords (investors, private landlords) can give temporary rent discounts. This is only possible for independent living space.


Apply in writing yourself

Under the new law, tenants can ask their landlord for a temporary rent reduction or rent freeze. This must always be in writing. The landlord then decides on the request and makes agreements with the tenant about the conditions.


Tenants cannot enforce a rent discount, but are dependent on the good will of their landlord. You can therefore ask the landlord for a rent discount, but he or she decides whether to grant the rent discount.


Statutory minimum and maximum term

The law states that a temporary rental discount is possible for a period of at least  one month to a  maximum of  three years . The period for which the discount applies in practice is mutually agreed upon by the landlord and the tenant. But it must be a minimum of one month and a maximum of three years.


Rent up again after temporary discount

Has the agreed period expired? Then the rent can go up again. Has the maximum period of three years not yet passed? Then as a tenant you can try to make agreements about extending the rental discount.


'Old level' is: previous rent + rent increase 

When the agreed period is over, your landlord may increase the rent again. Your landlord may then charge the rent that you would have had if you  had not  received the temporary discount. If your temporary discount has lasted for three years, this may mean that your landlord will still charge the rent increases that he has neglected for three years. This is allowed under the Temporary Rent Reduction Act. 


Temporary discount becomes permanent after three years

Does the rent reduction or rent freeze last longer than the legally determined maximum period of three years? Then the rental discount has become permanent. In that case, the lower, reduced rent will apply as your new rent. In that situation, your landlord may not raise the rent to the old level in one go. In that case, your rent may only be increased in accordance with the regular rules for the annual rent increase.


Also temporary discount with new home

A temporary rental discount can also be applied for for a new home. For example, if you move to a more expensive home owned by the same landlord. At your request, the landlord can agree with you that you start with a temporarily lower rent. The rent will then increase in steps over three years, so that you ultimately arrive at the rent that the landlord had in mind for this home.

One-off rent reduction is a different arrangement

Please note: temporary rent discount is different from the one-off rent reduction to  which housing association tenants with a low income and a high rent are legally entitled in 2021. The one-off (to be granted only in 2021) rent reduction is not a temporary discount, but a permanent reduction in your rent.  

Source: Woonbond December 2021