Arranging accommodation can demand a lot of time and effort for Dutch and international students. For this reason, finding a place to stay is one of the first things that need to be arranged when you are planning to study in Leiden. But how do you actually find a room in Leiden?
Leiden University student housing office
If you are an international student who will follow a bachelor’s programme at Leiden University, you can request assistance in finding accommodation from our Housing Office. This is particularly convenient if you are coming from overseas and don’t yet have any contacts in the Netherlands. The Housing Office mediates between international students and the DUWO housing corporation and can help you find a room in Leiden. Take a look at our Housing pages for a handy step by step guide through the application process. Here you can also find information on costs and procedures, as well as photos of the various student housing complexes.
Living and Housing in the Netherlands
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Finding housing yourself
If you want to look for accommodation yourself, there are many ways to do so. Most students in Leiden find a room through DUWO, which is the largest student accommodation corporation in the Netherlands. With rooms of all types and sizes, in or near the city centre, this organisation is the ideal place to start your search. After registering with DUWO, there are two ways you can find a room.
In most cases, you’ll be sharing a house with other students. During what is akin to an open house, you’ll need to convince the resident students that you’ll make the ideal new roommate. If you succeed, DUWO will be informed of the decision and you can move in.
DUWO can also help you find individual accommodation. However, this is only possible for a very limited number of rooms in the larger complexes and these are allocated to prospective tenants by lottery. Please note that during the first year, only students with a travel time priority will be eligible to apply for these rooms.
Travel time priority
If you are a prospective first-year student and you live far outside Leiden you may be eligible for travel time priority. This is an advantage because it means you can apply for the rooms that come free in DUWO's 12 largest properties.
Tips on finding a room yourself
- Do not leave it too late. It can take months to find a room, so inform your network in good time and tell everyone that you are looking for a room in Leiden.
- Use your membership or planned membership of a student association. Many associations control student accommodation for which you will only be accepted if you are a member of the association.
- Read advertisements in University buildings and the noticeboards of supermarkets, for example. And post your own advertisements to let people know that you are looking for accommodation.
- Keep an eye on the availability of student accommodation on various websites, including:
Visit our finding housing yourself page for more handy tips and tricks.
Living in student accommodation
You’ve found a room? Congratulations! Living and studying in Leiden will enrich your life. But it’ll probably take you a while to get used to too, because a lot will change after you leave home. You’ll have to do your own cooking and laundry for a start, and arrange your own finances. But on the other hand, living in student accommodation can be great fun; you’ll enjoy more freedom and you can make your own decisions.
How much does it cost to live in student accommodation?
The average cost of a room (non-furnished) in Leiden is between €300 and €500 a month. Then, of course, you’ll also need money for things like contract costs, groceries, insurance, study materials, transport and going out. So you’ll need to consider how you will approach all this financially.