Questions about moving to the Netherlands from Belgium.

I landed a job recently in the Netherlands and planning to move there in the next 3-4 months. I have a few questions about moving.

1. My office will be in Bergen Op Zoom. I’m planning to stay in Dordrecht or Rotterdam and travel by train to work.
Regarding Dordrecht: Is this a good place for a young family to stay? Are there good schools, parks, swimming pools and places to keep a 4 year old occupied? What are some good areas to live here, preferable within 15 min by walk of the station? What are some good schools in the area? What’s the average rent like here?
Regarding Rotterdam: I would look for places to stay which are about 15-20 min by walk from the Rotterdam Blaad station. Are there any good areas with good schools etc here? What would the rent be like in this area?

2. I‘m planning to hire an agent to look for a place to stay. I currently live in Antwerp and don’t have a car so travelling back and forth looking for houses will be difficult. Do you have any suggestion for real estate agents/websites?

3. I’m a software engineer with close to 10 years of experience, is 3000 EUR net a good salary to ask for? I’m still negotiating the salary with them.

4. Who normally takes care of the health insurance, is it paid for by the employer and part of the salary package or do you have to apply for it separately?

5. I’m currently learning Dutch through a Belgian government program. Are there any such programs in Netherlands through which I can continue the course?

Thanks for your help.

Hi and welcome to the Forum.

To answer some of your questions:

With regards to examining cost information, the Numbeo website has all this information and you can do a comparison between the 2 places you are considering; this link will take you there.

In general, both places are family friendly and will have all the facilities you want for a young family.

Rental accommodation is in very short supply everywhere in the Netherlands; I suggest you look for something like an Airbnb short-term and then look around in the regions that appeal to you.  We have a housing section at the top of this page, check that out to see if there is anything that may appeal to you; there is a specific section on Rotterdam with some links to help you look.

It's not a good idea to ask about salary's on an Internet forum as any information can be misleading; I can tell you that there is nothing spectacular about 3k except it's more than double the minimum wage and lots of people live in Holland on that salary.  It's about the maximum for a middle manager with the right qualifications and experience, depending on the market place for your speciality, you could be overpricing yourself; perhaps try joining LinkedIn and asking your peers who already work there.

Health Insurance is compulsory in the Netherlands and is your responsibility; many employers have their own scheme where you may get some added benefits if you join it, but it's up to you.

There are plenty of places to learn the language, but I'm not sure if you'll get any Government support on your salary; I'd recommend using Google to find somewhere close to where you choose to live.

If you have any further specific questions, please come back to us.

Hope this helps.

Expat Team

Hi Cynic,

Thanks for the reply. Can you suggest any rental search websites in The Netherlands? I already checked the listings on this site but couldn't find anything interesting. I'm looking for places in Breda and Dordrecht. I currently live close to the border but in Belgium so it will be easy for me to visit rental places in these cities.


Hi again.

Holland isn't that big; they do have several national sites; Google will help you find them, one such example is Pararius; this link will take you there.

Hope this helps.

Expat Team

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