From 1 January 2018, several changes to laws, regulations and benefits available to people living and working in the Netherlands came into effect. This included changes to the minimum wage, healthcare provisions and childcare benefits. See some of the most important changes in the overview below:
Work and income: changes in 2018
There will also be a number of changes to minimum wages and payments for employees, employers, contractors and clients, including changes to the youth wage and overtime. See the list of changes here.
The state pension age also increased by three months to 66 years in 2018. The maximum redundancy payment rose to €79,000 as of 1 January 2018, or one year’s pay if the gross annual salary is higher than €79,000. In 2017 the amount was €77,000.
Healthcare: changes in 2018
The maximum healthcare allowance for single people increased by €73 to €1,139 in 2018. The maximum health care allowance for partners increased by €79 to €2,121.
Family and childcare: changes in 2018
Childcare allowance increased on 1 January 2018. You can see how much childcare you may be entitled to using this childcare allowance table for 2018, or click here if you want to make a test calculation for childcare allowance (both in Dutch).
If your child goes to the playgroup, you may now also be able to receive a childcare allowance. If you meet the conditions, you can already apply for the supplement. Also from 2018 onwards, all Amsterdam toddlers are entitled to childcare with pre-school for 15 hours a week. Parents only have to pay an income-related contribution, which is kept as low as possible and to a minimum for parents with a low income or for parents with children with special needs. Read more about the changes here.
Childcare, out-of-school care and playgroups must also meet higher requirements in 2018.
Read more about the rule changes here (in Dutch).
Housing and mortgage rates: changes in 2018
Changes to mortgage rules will allow double-income households to borrow more money to buy a home in the Netherlands. Couples who both earn an income calculated their maximum mortgage by using only 60% of the lower of their two salaries in 2017, but the amount increased to 70% from 1 January 2018. Read more about the new rules here.
The maximum mortgage interest deduction in the highest tax bracket will also reduce by 0.5% from 1 January 2018, from 50.0% in 2017 to 49.5%. Owners' Associations will also be required to reserve compulsory money for major maintenance as of 2018.
See more about changes to housing and mortgage rates (in Dutch).
If you want to know about the law, regulation and benefit changes in the Netherlands in 2018, you can see a full overview here (in Dutch).
A new letterbox sticker system came into effect in Amsterdam from 1 January which aims to reduce the amount of unwanted materials being delivered to residents and make Amsterdam eco-friendlier. In the old system, printed advertising materials were delivered to any letterbox which didn’t have a sticker on it, but now residents without a sticker on their letterboxes will no longer receive any of this mail. See more about the new scheme here.
Parking and transport
From this year, cyclists in Amsterdam can park for free at more of the City’s bicycle parking facilities. As of 1 January 2018, you don't have to pay for the first 24 hours of parking at five more facilities throughout Amsterdam. To find out more about the new free parking, and for costs relating to longer stays, see more information here.
On 1 January 2018, an Environmental Zone (milieuzone) will be introduced in areas of the city of Amsterdam for mopeds/scooters made on or before 2010. There is also an environmental zone within the A10 ring road for buses, coaches and diesel taxis. This means that these vehicles will be prohibited from entering the zone unless they have applied for an exemption. See the website for more information (in Dutch).