The Deposit

Information about the deposit and inventory report when renting a flat or house in Belgium...

Most landlords require a security deposit (garantie locative/huurwaarborg). This is not obligatory unless stated in the lease contract. In most cases the deposit, which may not exceed the equivalent of two month's rent, is placed in an interest-bearing bank account in the tenant's name. This account is blocked and requires authorisation from the landlord and the tenant before the money can be released.

The security deposit may also take the form of a bank guarantee, which may not exceed the equivalent of three month's rent. The tenant can arrange this at their bank for an annual fee. A one-off set-up fee is paid, and the tenant pays monthly installments to the bank for a maximum of three years. The bank provides a guarantee letter for the landlord, which must be returned to the bank at the end of the lease contract. The money is released upon departure of the tenant and upon presentation of a written agreement, signed by the landlord and the tenant.

  • For further information on security deposits in Belgium: Click here (in French) or here (in German)

On departure, the property should be returned to the condition it was in when the tenant took it over. If the property is not in the same condition, the landlord is entitled to use all or part of the security deposit to cover the cost of repairs. The deposit will not usually be refunded until the last common charges (see below) have been determined and settled.

Inventory and Condition Report

An inventory and condition report (état des lieux/staat van de huis) should be completed and signed when moving into a new property, and include the following:

  • State of the fixtures and fittings (if applicable)
  • The cleanliness and condition of the decoration
  • Any items missing or in need of repair

In Belgium, a surveyor (géomètre/landmeter) will normally carry out the inventory, which is paid for by the property owner.