Utrecht is a big student city, and they’re always coming and going and leaving their rooms behind. All-in-all, it’s easier to find housing here in Utrecht than the likes of Rotterdam or Amsterdam, especially with the availability of student housing from some of the universities. You’re probably looking at €400-700 per month for your rent, so it’s not the best city for cheap accommodation.
If you’re looking for cheap rooms - and ones which can be available for less than a year - then you’re probably going to choose a room in a student apartment. These will always be found online, as no students are going to pay a letting agency to advertise on their behalf. The Housing Anywhere Utrecht search is always being updated with new rooms, all of which are payment protected and advertised by the student or landlord directly - you can filter by cost or location, so check it out and try to get a place sorted soon!
One of the most effective ways to get up and running in Utrecht is to use Facebook to connect with fellow exchange students and rent a whole property together, or to find a single room in an already-arranged flat. We have a number of groups you can join:
Main Housing Group - This group is for anyone looking to arrange accommodation and has around 10,000 members already.
Marnix Academie - Specifically for students at Marnix Academie University.
Utrecht University - Specifically for students at Utrecht University.
Student Housing Utrecht - A group for students across the city.
General Housing and Interns Group - A group for non-students, such as interns.
Finally we have an Utrecht housing page, where we can post about apartments or share information from other sites to help you get sorted with a place. You can join any number of groups to maximize your odds of finding somewhere great!
There are plenty of con artists out there who specialize in stealing from those students who are desperately trying to find cheap accommodation for their exchange. There will be an offer of cheap rooms, and a "pay now to guarantee the room for your arrival" sort of pitch. Never pay for a room in this way unless:
You have physically seen the room - With a Skype tour if you aren’t in the area yet, just so you know it exists as described.
You have a formal, signed tenancy agreement/contract - Without a contract, you are completely helpless in the case of fraud.
The payment is domestic - Some fraudsters will say they are out of the country or some such excuse, and require payment to an overseas account. Refuse, as you should definitely be paying into a Dutch account for a Dutch property.
Some services (like Housing Anywhere) offer a secure, money-back payment system in addition to verifying our apartments. If you (and we) have been conned by someone, you will receive your money back immediately - we don’t pay the landlord/tenants until you have physically entered your flat and given us the thumbs up.
At Utrecht University there is reserved accommodation, which means student-specific apartments on campus. These are usually not the fanciest or largest apartments, however they are the most convenient: it’s right on campus, and all your bills + internet will be included in a single rent payment and they are specifically for international students!
Spaces fill up quickly, but even if they are all gone you should still register - drop outs are common and you may still get a place!
As a rule, you’ll be looking at anywhere from €450 (though some shared rooms will be as low as €350) to €750 or above, if you’re considering a studio or one-bed apartment to yourself. That middle ground (€450-750) is where the individual rooms in shared flats are, and those are generally the most enjoyable ones.
The student accommodation at Utrecht University is available in all 3 forms, with shared rooms around €350 and the individual rooms €450-550, though these are exceptionally competitive and you’ll be fortunate to land one!
This amount is usually just rent - your utility bills (gas, electric, internet) will be extra and must be budgeted for. These will likely be around €100 per month for the whole flat - again, renting with others drops this cost considerably.
Remember that any landlord can request up to several months’ rent upfront, as well as a security deposit. You may have to pay €2000 or so when you first move in, so make sure you have this money saved well in advance of moving!