From temporary accommodation to homeless shelters, Sharon is now finally ‘Under the Pans’

Due to the acute housing shortage, Sharon was stuck after her relationship break-up. Without a permanent residence, she ended up in tents, with friends and even at homeless shelters. She has now found a warm home through Onder de Pannen. This initiative allows private individuals to temporarily rent out a room to people without a home.

Through landlady rental, Onder de Pannen offers the opportunity to rent out a temporary room to someone who has lost their home. This option has also been available to residents of Velsen for two weeks now; It was previously active in Bloemendaal. Tenant Sharon and landlords Rolf and Femke share their experience.

Photo: From temporary accommodation to homeless shelter, Sharon is now finally Under the Pans – NH News / Loïs Iglesias

The three of them are sitting comfortably at the kitchen table drinking a cup of tea. “We do this often,” says Femke. “We either watch a movie or chat, but that is of course different for everyone. It really depends on the needs of both parties.”

Since November, Sharon has moved into Rolf and Femke’s house. “I have my room downstairs with a bed, desk and cupboard. And I use the kitchen, toilet and shower.”


This turned out to be the solution for Sharon, because her situation was hopeless. “I had been living with my ex for two years because I couldn’t find a place to live. One day I stopped and started wandering from place to place. With friends, in tents, even in the night shelter for the homeless. In the end I had all temporary solutions.”

“I couldn’t think of anyone else I could go to, and I wasn’t doing well at all. Rolf and Femke knew me from the meditation group, they knew my situation and thought: ‘Can we do something? Can’t we help her? ‘”


From her position at the municipality, Femke is familiar with Onder de Pannen. “I explained Sharon’s situation, and Onder de Pannen started in Bloemendaal more quickly.”

It works differently than subletting, Femke explains. “Through this project, agreements have been made with the UWV, the municipality, housing associations and the Tax Authorities. This way you can provide help in a ‘safe’ way for up to a year.”

“As a landlord you are also very well protected, for example if hassle arises”

Rolf, landlord

Rolf adds: “Everything is really well on paper. As a landlord you are also very well protected, for example if hassles arise. A third party guarantees the rent in any case, and if something goes wrong, you can contact someone directly. “


It was the heart that brought Rolf and Femke to this decision, Femke emphasizes. “More than the mind,” says Rolf, laughing. “I first thought: you give up a lot of privacy, but it can also be a very nice dynamic.”

And that turns out to be it. “It’s really enriching and we’re having a great time.”


Sharon is extremely grateful. “This offers so many possibilities. Before the summer I was really in a situation where I thought: never mind. I don’t want to fight anymore; this has been dragging on for so long. I even considered moving abroad and breaking away from society, but that was unrealistic. I just didn’t know what to do anymore.”

“Before the summer I was really in a situation where I thought: never mind. I don’t want to fight anymore; this has been dragging on for so long.”

Sharon, tenant

The fact that Sharon now has perspective again and is taking steps means a lot to Rolf and Femke. “Now that she has a base here, she is willing to change her situation. It is wonderful to see that this has such an effect; that really gives us satisfaction,” says Rolf. “Here I can start living and stop surviving,” Sharon adds.


Femke emphasizes that they really look carefully at whether you are a good fit for each other, and everything is handled very carefully. “It is also not the case that every homeless person is suitable for this project. You should not think of the stereotype of smelly, drinking homeless people with dreads. That is not what this project aims to achieve.”

Rolf adds: “It’s about someone who is not successful due to the current housing market and who gives you a helping hand.”