The costs of living in the Netherlands depend on the region (big cities are a bit more expensive), your personal situation (do you have a family and/or pets?) and lifestyle choices.
The Netherlands is known for being a bit expensive, but on the other hand, your work-life balance is a guarantee. A lot of Dutchies work part-time, but are still able to save enough money for holidays, hobbies or other activities.
In this article you can read more about the expected costs each month while living in the Netherlands.
The fixed costs are the expenses you will have to count on paying every month, such as rent, health insurance, utilities, internet and tv, car insurance, phone subscription, etc.). The biggest chunk of this part will go to housing.
The Dutch housing market is fast and high demanding. You will be better off outside the major urban areas, if you want to save more money. The rent price starts on average from €1000 / per month and up (in 2023). In an ideal situation, you will spend somewhere between 1200 en max 1500 / per month including utilities.
But be aware: the bigger the city, the bigger the bill.
Basic health insurance coverage will be around €135 in 2023. If you add supplementary insurance, such as dental care, physiotherapy or alternative medicine, this will be added to the basic coverage. On average people will pay €140-145 / per month. Health care insurance is mandatory for every resident in the Netherlands, but you can pick what suits your needs and and look at which healthcare providers can offer the best deal based on your wishes.
Obviously, with rising prices of gas and electricity, everyone was scared what the situation would be like later in 2023. Great news, the prices are going down for gas so you could expect to pay somewhere from €150 to €250 on average per household. How depends on several factors such as the type of house, the size of house, insulation etc. In an apartment the prices are lower than in a detached house.
We also shouldn’t forget to include smaller fixed costs such as internet and TV subscription, which will amount to about €30-60 depending on what services and provider you choose. You need to have a Dutch phone number and a phone subscription costs on average €25 / per month. If you have more than one phone number and maybe extra services like TV and internet, you will get some discounts on all of the subscriptions.
Not everyone, but some people also get a subscription for a gym which costs on average around €30 per month.
The lasts costs to keep in mind relate to your own transportation such as a car insurance, car taxes and gasoline. The car insurance will be, on average, €35, the car tax on average €50, but don’t forget that a diesel (polluting) car will cost way more per month: €100 (polluting); €25-40 (cleaner car). Last but not least, gasoline prices: for 1L of petrol you will pay €1.900 on average and for 1L of diesel €1.730.
Daily living expenses
The list of things that we should include under this category varies per household and it’s difficult to estimate the exact prices. We are talking about groceries, cleaning products, personal care products, and other household products.
To give you a better idea, you spend on groceries for your household on average between €390 – €430 per month. Example: 1 person household spends around €240 / per month compared to €560 for a family of 2 adults + 2 children between 9-13 years old.
Besides groceries, you should count on spending from time to time extra money on your hobbies, eating out, going to the hairdresser, etc.
This is an extra category since it does not apply to everyone, but has to be calculated in your monthly budgeting if you have children.
Children between 4 months and 4 years can sign up for daycare. These are private and parents have to pay for them monthly. The national average is around €10 / per hour. The price depends whether the child stays the whole day, consumes meals, or what activities the nursery offers. For instance, if you need daycare for your 1-year-old child for 3 days in a week, 8h a day: with the average price, you’ll pay €960 / per month. However, it’s good to know that you might be able to apply for childcare allowance. In this case, the government reimburses you for a part of these costs.
Primary and secondary schools are free of charge in the Netherlands. If you decide to sign up your child in an international school, then you have to count on paying somewhere between €5.000 and €15.000 a year.
The annual tuition for an university (statutory fee) is € 2,314 for the academic year 2023-2024.
To summarize the cost of living in the Netherlands, you will probably end up spending around 2000 a month. It also depends on your personal spending pattern, it could be less and it could be more. It might seem like a lot, but as a dentist you earn more than enough to pay all your bills and save extra for later. Of course, the total cost of living can be divided by two if you share your household with a partner or friend. But even if you are taking this step alone, you will be more than okay to pay all your expenses. At the beginning, if you want to build a bigger financial cushion, it might be smart to share house at the with other people. This way you get to know more people in the area and save money at the beginning. This is really just your choice and depends on what is best for you.