Sugar Homes is keeping tenants’ deposit to pay for energy costs

Last year’s Sugar Homes tenants won’t be receiving their 750 euro deposit back. Owner StudentHousing (STHO) is keeping the money, totaling around 187,500 euros, to compensate for high energy costs. 

The company is supposed to return deposits eight weeks after tenants move out. But the 250 international students who lived – and in some cases are still living – in the container units at the Suikerunie location received an email last week informing them that this wouldn’t be happening. 

STHO had already tried to increase the monthly energy costs by 200 euros in February, but the students refused to pay, saying it was illegal for their contracts to be altered when they’d already been signed. STHO backed down, saying it ‘acted a bit too brashly’. 

Final bill

But the monthly energy payments are only an advance and the final bill gets calculated at the end of the calendar year. If what residents paid was more than the costs incurred, they’ll get money back. If it was more, they’ll have to pay the excess.

Still, the students are livid. According to them, most of them received a contract in Dutch, making it hard to understand what exactly they signed for. ‘I didn’t expect they would use the same reasons as before to not return our deposit. I am really angry’, says Jessica (24), a master student at the Faculty of Arts. 

The tenants are now considering legal action to get their deposit back. 

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