Amsterdam landlord to tenants: If you get pregnant, rot op!
An Amsterdam landlord has made what some might consider being an unreasonable request to their tenants. They have to sign a contract stating that they won’t get pregnant. Sadly, this is not me being sarcastic nor is this satire, this has actually happened recently in Amsterdam. Which brings me to the subject of today’s post.
Renting in Amsterdam a recession-proof business
In the above scene from the Sopranos, Sil, the Consiglieri of the Sopranos crime family explains that traditionally there are two businesses that have always been recession-proof.
“Certains aspects of showbusiness”
Had Sil been living in the Netherlands, he’d have also added a third business.
“Renting in Amsterdam”
Amsterdam Landlords have never had it so good
Being a landlord in Amsterdam is a license to print money. Whoever you blame for the current shortage of affordable property, (expats if you’re Dutch and investors and banks if you’re not) professional landlords are as happy as a Dutch woman on a tour of a sneaker factory.
The shortage of properties to rent in Amsterdam has led to a situation where landlords can pretty much add any number of ridiculous stipulations to rental contracts knowing full well that people are so desperate that they’ll agree to anything. For example,
- The tiny apartment costing 1000 euros a month where tenants were not allowed to use the kitchen.
- The notorious case of the rental apartment where no non-western cooking was allowed.
But I must admit that this is the first time that I’ve heard of an apartment where you’re not allowed to get pregnant.
Location, Location, Location
The apartments in question are based in the Lange Leidsedwarsstraat just round the corner from Leidseplein. The management company responsible for the apartments claims that they’re not suitable for children as the walls are incredibly thin and children would be the cause of ‘noise’. Let me repeat that, ‘noise’. 😀 For those of you not familiar with the street where the apartments are based, it is anything but quiet. In fact, it’s one of the most notorious party streets in Amsterdam.
A night spent on that street is like being on safari. It’s home to ‘de kleine Cooldown cafe’. Which is basically a tiny, obnoxious party bar, that blares a mixture of traditional Dutch music mixed with popular classic hits. It’s full of drunken students and should come with a large sign forbidding vegans entry as it’s basically a sweaty meat market. Walk a few steps along the same street and you’ll come to Cafe Bubbels where women who are too old for the Cooldown cafe go in groups to hunt down lazy Dutch men. It also has some occasional shocked tourists and people from the provinces taking endless selfies so they can tell their friends back home about their exotic experience in an ‘exclusive’ club in Amsterdam.
Even though the apartments are in a ‘quiet’ part of that street, it’s still very close to Leidseplein. Anyone living in an apartment in that street really won’t be concerned about noise.
Will free condoms be provided?
Considering the no babies requirement, I’m hoping that the landlord will provide free contraception. I assume that as the walls are thin that there’ll also be a subclause stipulating how often tenants are allowed to have jiggy jiggy. No doubt there’ll be a calendar on the door of the toilet specifying when and for how long this will be allowed.
A Dutch lawyer interviewed about the non-pregnancy/no-children clause has already stated that any such clause would be unenforceable in a court of law. They have said that in the event of a tenant becoming pregnant that they’ll help them find somewhere else to live.
So there you have it. As the Dutch would say, ‘het moet niet gekker worden’. No doubt us kut expats will be blamed again for this, but I’d add that the owners of this particular property are Vereniging Hendrick de Keyser, who are as Dutch as stroopwafel and bitterballen. The Amsterdam rental market 2019, like something out of a Charles Dickens novel.
No midwives were hurt during the writing of this post.