This week, figures released by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) and real estate valuation company Calcasa revealed precisely how inaccessible the Dutch housing market is to first-time buyers. According to research carried out by Calcasa, young professionals can afford to purchase just 3,4 percent of homes in the Netherlands.
Dutch housing market remains inaccessible to single first-time buyers
As part of the latest quarterly report published by Calcasa, the company investigated the opportunities for young people looking to get their foot on the Dutch property ladder and buy their first home. According to Calcasa’s research, the average first-time buyer “can only finance 3,4 percent of owner-occupied homes in the Netherlands” in the current market.
“It has been known for some time that it is difficult for starters to gain a foothold in the housing market,” Calcasa writes. “Even with the help of their parents, first-time buyers struggle to find a suitable owner-occupied home.” The research looked at the proportion of properties single prospective buyers would be able to afford with a maximum mortgage of 200.000 euros.
Unsurprisingly, Calcasa found significant differences between the various regions and cities. In Amsterdam and Utrecht, just a shocking 0,3 percent of homes were found to be affordable for a first-time buyer. In The Hague and Rotterdam, opportunities for buying a home are a little better (4,2 and 6,4 percent respectively). In Heerlen, meanwhile, prospective buyers can afford 35 percent of properties.
Of course, the options were a little better for couples where both parties have jobs and earn an income: “Double income earners have better prospects in the housing market. They are eligible for 40 percent of owner-occupied homes and, with a possible gift from their parents, for almost half of the homes.”
Average house prices over 1 million euros in 3 municipalities
Similarly, data published by CBS on Wednesday showed that, in 2022, the average purchase price of an owner-occupied home in the Netherlands (i.e. not a new-build property) was 429.000 euros – the highest figure recorded since records began in 1995 and almost 42.000 euros higher than in 2021.
Almost all of the 345 municipalities in the Netherlands saw the average transaction price rise between 2021 and 2022. CBS notes that 25 saw prices rise by at least 20 percent, seven saw prices rise by over 25 percent, and only six recorded a fall in prices. The most significant increase (36 percent) was seen in Zeewolde in Flevoland (near Almere), whereas in Zouterwoude in South Holland, prices fell by over 10 percent.
For the first time ever, three municipalities were found to have an average purchase price of over 1 million euros: Bloemendaal, Blaricum, and Laren. On the other hand, only four municipalities recorded an average purchasing price of under 250.000 euros, with Pekela in Groningen taking the bottom spot with an average of just 230.760 euros.