Breda is known as a historic city, offering a combination of historic attractions and lively modern activities. The city currently has a population of around 180,000 and the city center is a good place to meet and relax. There are a number of historic buildings in the city but Breda is not all about the old. There are a number of modern structures and plenty of these have been created by the large international companies that have their bases around the city.
Shops are plentiful and open seven days a week, but close on a Monday morning. Breda prides itself on its traditional Brabant welcome and with the number of expats in residence increasing as the city expands, it has a fairly cosmopolitan feel. For general information about Breda, visit the official website of the city.
Whether or not you need a visa for your move to Breda, as well as what type of visa you may have to apply for, heavily depends on your home country and the reason and length of your stay. In general, citizens of an EU/EEA member state typically do not need a visa; you can find more information on this in our article on Moving to the Netherlands.
Those moving to Breda also need to obtain a citizen service number, through the Municipal Personal Records Database. This applies not only to workers, but also those who are retired. This citizen number is vital for all aspects of life in Breda, including healthcare and government records.
For those planning to stay in Breda for less than four months, registration is available in the city of Breda or in any other Dutch municipality. For longer stays, registration must take place in Breda itself. Registration only takes approximately 10 minutes; a valid identity document for each person is needed at the appointment.
There are two rental markets in Breda: public housing and private sector. All houses and apartments are subject to the House Value Rating System, where the quality of the house is assessed and awarded points. If you want to measure the fairness of your potential rental price, then visit the Ministry of Housing website (VROM) for information.
There is generally a housing shortage in Breda, so registering with the three main housing agents is essential before the date that you intend to arrive. Kilk voor Wonen acts as an agent for all of these and details can be found online. Expats wishing to live and work in Breda may be considering buying a house; there are in fact excellent financial benefits for those who purchase their own home. Employers can contribute to mortgages in the same way as rent. A semi furnished apartment in the city center, with two bedrooms, will cost around 875 EUR.