Building regulations

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

Your business premises in the Netherlands must comply with the building regulations. You will find these regulations in the Building Decree 2012 (Bouwbesluit 2012) as well as in your local building by-laws.

You must also comply with building regulations and layout requirements that are relevant to your specific business activities. Moreover, if you plan to build, rebuild or renovate, in most cases you will need an All-in-one Permit for Physical Aspects (omgevingsvergunning).

The Environment and Spatial Planning Laws were simplified to make it quicker and easier for projects to get off the ground, this legislation is expected to come into force in 2022.

Building Decree 2012

If you plan to refurbish, build, demolish or occupy a building, you must comply with the Building Decree 2012. This decree contains the technical regulations that represent the minimum requirements for all structures in the Netherlands. The requirements relate to safety, health, usability, energy efficiency and the environment. The Praktijkboek Bouwbesluit 2012 (in Dutch) guides you through the Building Decree 2012.

Energy saving measures

Business in the Netherlands are required to take energy saving measures by reducing their energy demand, by applying sustainable technologies and by using renewable energy sources.


As of 1 January 2021 all new buildings must also meet the Almost Energy Neutral Building requirements (Bijna Energieneutrale Gebouwen, BENG). These are strict requirements that result from the European Energy Performance of Buildings Directive and are meant to reduce energy consumption.

Energy performance is determined by:

  • maximum energy demand in kWh per square meter per year (kWh/m2.yr) – BENG 1 (in Dutch)
  • maximum primary fossil energy consumption in kWh per square meter per year (kWh/m2.yr) – BENG 2 (in Dutch)
  • percentage of the minimum share of renewable energy – BENG 3 (in Dutch)

All 3 requirements must meet the threshold. These requirements (in Dutch) replace the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) requirements. There is a separate requirement for the exterior of buildings. These should be designed in a way that reduces energy consumption as much as possible.

There are different requirements for different building types (in Dutch). BENG requirements are assessed with NTA 8800.

Reducing use of natural gas

Government measures to reduce the use of natural gas to combat climate change are also underway. Reduction of the use of natural gas is at present mainly aimed at housing (in Dutch).

Municipal building rules

The municipal building rules relate to urban planning, building on contaminated land and requirements regarding the external appearance of buildings. Building rules can differ from one municipality to another.

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO