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Do you have questions about (finding) shelter or permanent housing? On this page, you will find information on what to do if you are looking for a place to live in the Netherlands.

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Last updated: Monday, January 23, 2023

The Dutch government has different ways of providing shelter for refugees.

Referral to a shelter

Did you recently arrive in the Netherlands and have no place to sleep with friends or family? Then the Dutch government will make sure you get shelter. Currently, there are four major transit locations in the Netherlands. From a transit location you will be assisted with finding a shelter, food and medical care.

Please go to one of the locations below for a referral to a shelter that has space:

Please keep in mind that there is no guarantee that you will be accommodated within your preferred municipality. For example, because there are no shelters available within that municipality.

Municipal shelter

Municipalities are responsible for providing shelter to Ukrainian refugees. For this purpose, they set up emergency shelter locations, including empty office buildings. In many municipalities there is a great shortage of suitable locations. Therefore, the help of hotels is often requested. In this case, the hotel can provide food, drink and shelter.

You may receive less living allowance in the municipal shelter than you would at a host family. This is because the municipality may pay part of the living allowance in kind. In the form of food and beverages, for example. You can read more about this on the page about living allowance.

Staying with a host family

You can choose to stay with a host family temporarily. You can arrange this through RefugeeHomeNL. RefugeeHomeNL is an initiative of the government and NGO's to offer refugees from Ukraine a safe home among Dutch families. Check the RefugeeHome website for more information.

Liability insurance

Are you staying in a municipal shelter? Then you do not need to take out liability insurance (WA-verzekering). You are insured through the municipality. However, conditions and own risk may apply. For more information, please contact the municipality in which you are staying.

Are you staying with a host family? Most of the time it is not necessary to take out liability insurance. This is because you are staying with the host family temporarily and are therefore co-insured as a lodger under your host family's liability insurance.

Do you rent your own home? It is important to get liability insurance. More information can be found on the page Insurance.

Visiting and receiving visitors

If you or your family are coming to the Netherlands for a visit or for transit, it is not possible to make use of municipal shelter and/or living allowance. If you are staying in a host family yourself, you can of course discuss with your host family whether your visitor may stay overnight. A host family is not obliged to host your (family) visit.

Would you like to visit someone at a shelter? Please check with the shelter first to see if this is possible.

Registering without a residential address

If you do not have a residential address of your own where you can register, the municipality must register you at a postal address (mailing address). This is an address where the government can reach someone without a residential address. For example, this could be the address of the municipal office. Please contact your municipality to find out what the options are.