Expat Housing Services in Belgium

The housing market in Belgium is wide open, and rental housing is easy to find, except for the capital city, Brussels, where there are many diplomats who rent. Many available properties advertise with a sign and phone number in the window. They can also be found in newspaper ads, or through word of mouth. The rental apartments are usually offered unfurnished, but a few have equipped kitchens which include a fridge and cooker, or better equipped with a microwave and dishwasher. Landlords will also require a security deposit to move in.

 

Because it can take years to evict someone in Belgium, landlords usually want to see proof of income. Leases often run for 9 years, but can be broken, with a decreasing penalty if broken during the first three years. Inventory is taken of the condition of the apartment upon moving in and out.

 

Other monthly maintenance fees must be paid in addition to the base rent, which often doesn’t cover internal maintenance, but these can be partly credited at the end of the year if enough maintenance services were not required. Following all house rules of the rental property is important, such as no running water past 10 pm, etc. Buying a home is not generally considered an attractive option for expats because of the transfer fees and the taxes added to the final figure.

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