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Amersfoort - 30 januari 2022

Housing Manifesto Amersfoort

  1. Make the fight against (imminent) home and houselessness a priority.
    Treat home and houselessness as a housing problem, actively prevent homelessness and evictions, and ensure fast housing for people who become homeless.
    There are not enough available and affordable houses in Amersfoort, which causes and extends the duration of unnecessary homelessness. Finding shelter at friends or family is discouraged because the government taxes co-residency by reducing wellfare benefits (through the 'kostendelersnorm'). People who end up on the street should get a new home as soon as possible and Amersfoort should use every legal possibility to not enforce this reduction of wellfare benefits.
  2. Ensure broadly accessible housing.
    For both lower and middle income people. Stop the destruction of the social housing sector, abolish the landlord’s levy, and invest at least 4 billion per year extra from the central government in affordable housing, sustainability and livable neighborhoods
    There is a lack of affordable, sustainable homes for smaller households in Amersfoort. Especially for young people and people with a disability it is hard to find a place to live. There are also insufficient options to move forward to better fitted houses for aging people. Amersfoort should stop targetting higher income groups who pay more taxes and should start focussing on groups who hardly can find a house to live in by increasing the number of smaller, sustainable social houses.

    Stop the demolishment of Jericho. Preserve and improve the sustainability of existing social housing and increase the number of affordable houses. Sustainability should never be a cover for landlords to justify demolishment; social tenants should not be excluded from the energy transition.
  3. Ensure Affordability.
    Regulate rent prices, also in the “free” market. Make the points system generally binding and remove the WOZ value from the points system. Re-think all tax measures which increase buying prices. Tax income more, and tax work less.
    Amersfoort is leading the wrong lists over and over again. There should be no more rent increases and chasing up prices of houses by investers should be put to and end. To achieve this, strict arrangements should be made with landlords and housing associations, and there should be a city wide protection against buyouts by investers. The required percentage of social houses in building projects should be extended with quality demands so that project developers do not just build social houses that are so small that the price per square meter is still too high.
  4. Guarantee Housing Stability.
    Make permanent rent contracts and permanent housing the norm again. Abolish temporary or flexible rent contracts and offer effective rent control for all renters.
    Amersfoort is leading in tempory rental contracts and rent increases. The city municipality should do everything possible to put an end to that. Demolishing working class neighborhoods like Jericho to solve the housing crisis is not acceptable. Also in higher income neighborhoods, locations that become available should be used to build affordable (social) houses instead of using these scarce locations for a villa district for the rich.
  5. Decrease the inequality between buying and renting.
    Treat home-ownership and renting as equal. Stop the disproportionate financial benefits for home-owners, slowly get rid of mortgage interest deduction.
    Amersfoort should stop financing home-ownership, for example by starter loans, to avoid price increases of houses and to decrease the inequality between buyers and renters. Financial benefits for energy reduction are now mainly aimed at home owners. Amersfoort should invest more in social housing so that social tenants can also benefit from energy saving and live in well isolated homes.
  6. Protect equal access to housing.
    Stop the exclusion based on income (Rotterdam law, gentrification policies), guarantee sufficient affordable houses for people with a handicap and the elderly, ensure a strong response to discrimination by landlords and estate agents.
    Amersfoort should actively fight discrimination of housing tenants and buyers, and should guarantee equal access to housing. This also means that second rate housing for refugees is not acceptable. The city municipality should enforce that every house build is accessible for people with a disability, and enough houses should be created for people who are dependent on protected living or care homes.
  7. Give citizens equal input.
    Democratize decision-making about land, real estate and living conditions, give inhabitants a say and facilitate cooperative living situations.
    Social housing associations should not suprise their tenants with decisions about demolishment of their houses like happened in the neighborhood Jericho. Local residents know best what is good for their neighborhood, and should have a say in these kind of decisions before they are taken.
  8. Contain the commercialization of housing.
    Abolish disproportionate financial benefits for investors, tax rent incomes fairly and put in broad purchase protection.
    The purchase protection should apply to all neighborhoods in Amersfoort to prevent a waterbed effect. For new construction projects, arrangements should be made with the project developers to prevent the newly delivered houses from being snatched away by investors.
  9. Don’t give bad faith landlords and estate agents a chance.
    Register and monitor rentals, invest in the rent commission and in local rent teams, establish a renting permit, increase the capacity to enforcement and punish abuses.
    In line with other cities, Amersfoort should introduce a rental team ('huurteam') that helps tenants to fight bad faith landlords, and Amersfoort should start financing independant tenant interest groups.
  10. Tackle vacancy effectively.
    If houses are empty when so many people don’t have a place to live, squatting is a legitimate and logical solution. The ban on squatting thus needs to be abolished.
    Amersfoort should start using the vacancy law ('Leegstandwet') and use tax measurements to actively fight vacancy of buildings that could be transformed into houses.

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Supporting organisations

At this moment, Woonrevolte Amersfoort is supported by the following organisations:


Amersfoort BIJ1

Amersfoort Voor14

Bezorgd Liendert

Communistische Jongerenbeweging

DENK Amersfoort

De Rode Lap

DWARS Utrecht

GroenLinks Amersfoort

JS Utrecht

Lijst Noëlle Sanders

PvdA Amersfoort

PvdD Amersfoort

ROOD Utrecht

SP Amersfoort

Volt Amersfoort

Vrije Bond Utrecht

Wij Weigeren De Huurverhoging

XR Amersfoort