Over a quarter of students in Rotterdam are dissatisfied with their landlord. However, master student Korrein Volders is not one of them. His landlord is always willing to do repairs and once got rid of an unwanted housemate.
Korrein Volders (23), master student of Financial Economics and Financial Law, has had a room in the same house for five years, near Afrikaanderplein in Rotterdam South. This is not one of the more obvious locations, because most students live either in the centre or in Kralingen.
This summer EM joined up with Yournalism, a platform for investigative journalism, and ten other higher education media to conduct a survey into the student lodging market. The whole dossier is available here.
But Volders is very happy. “It’s quite near the centre and the house is well maintained. We already had laminate flooring and the three big windows are double-glazed. That makes it very light and quiet and no one complains if we have a party.”
The student is also happy with his landlord. “I recently had a leak because it had been raining so hard; there was something wrong with the roof. When I called my landlord about it, he immediately arranged for someone to come and mend it.”
Any disagreements are also easily resolved. “When my basin became blocked, he initially didn’t want to repair it because it’s my responsibility to ensure that the pipes don’t get blocked. But when I said that the pipes were getting blocked because the drain pipes were old, he agreed to do it. That’s really nice.”
His landlord never comes round unannounced to see whether Volders and his housemates are trashing the place. “He only comes if something needs mending.”
And when strange things happen, his landlord is always quite relaxed. “We once had to get something down from the loft, but couldn’t open the door. That was odd, because the door locks from the inside.
The landlord was just about to remove the hinges when the door opened. It was a friend of one of my housemates who had been kicked out a week and a half ago. He’d apparently crept back upstairs and hidden in the loft for the past week and a half without us noticing. My landlord gave him ten minutes to collect his things and leave before he called the police. I never saw the guy again.”