Tenants in The Hague can force landlords to make their homes more sustainable

The Municipality of The Hague adopts new measures for tenants of private housing to make it easier for them to live sustainably. Until now, it has been difficult for tenants to do something about insulation, for example, because they have been dependent on the decisions of their landlords. In the worst case, tenants were left to pay the high energy costs, Omroep West reported.

As of September, the municipality’s measures will come into effect for private tenants. This is thanks to the Partij voor de Dieren’s (Party for the Animals) initiative proposal, which was approved by a large majority of the political parties in the city council.

According to Robert Barker, leader of the Partij voor de Dieren, the goal was that “The municipality should bail out the tenants,” he told Omroep West. That’s because normally most tenants have no choice but to go to court if the landlord won’t cooperate regarding sustainability. But for most, that means spending a lot of money, time, and annoying paperwork.

But starting this year, the municipality of The Hague is taking action against this and will, for example, cover the legal costs if tenants decide to take their landlords to court if they refuse to make the apartment more sustainable. According to the newspaper, the municipality is making 183,000 euros available for this purpose.

This step is intended to help people not to feel left alone when they advocate for more sustainable housing, according to Partij voor de Dieren. ‘This gives tenants more power and we help tenants to become more sustainable. This is good for the wallet, but also for the climate,’ Barker told Omroep West.

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