Buying Property in The Netherlands



How to Find Property in the Netherlands 

As in any other country, research is the first step to buying property in the Netherlands. Take the time to explore your options, look around and talk to expats who already own homes in the country to find out more. It is best to research online, in books, magazines, and visit property exhibitions and talk to real estate agents before you go to the Netherlands. When you arrive, take a place on rent while you look around and compare properties.

You will need to check on a few things whenever you take an appointment to view property through an agent such as whether water supply, electricity, heating systems are in order, the general condition of the kitchen, flooring, parking space and the neighborhood. Compare prices of different properties and arrange for a survey of the property in one of the following ways: 

Real Estate Agents 

The best way of finding a dream home in the Netherlands is using the services of an estate agent. This will save you a lot of time and effort in the entire process. Take advice from an agent who is recognized by an association like the Dutch Association of Real Estate Agents (Nederlandse Vereniging van Makelaars/NVM). The agent's fees will work out to 1.5-2% of the purchase price. 

Costs Likely to be Incurred 

Some of the additional costs you need to consider on your property purchase are the following:

1. Transfer tax @6% of the purchase price of the property.

2. Real estate fees @1.5% to 2% of the purchase price of the property.

3. Notary costs: Usually between €1,000 and €3,000 (negotiable).

4. Valuation costs: Range from €300 to €1,000 depending on the property.

5. Survey costs: Are around €500 and €1,000 or more depending on what type of survey you want.

6. Closing fee @1% of the mortgage price.

The notary is responsible for the proper settlement of the payment of the purchase price and all additional costs. 

Buying Process & Contracts 

Take an appointment to view property through your agent and ask for as much information about the property as you want. The owner is obligated to give as much information as he can under the law. Once you reach an agreement on the price and other conditions of purchase, you will be required to sign a promissory note (koopakte), containing details of the transaction. The buyer has three days after the note is signed to withdraw from the deal without any penalty. Conditional paragraphs relating to mortgage and survey can be included in the note, and the contract may be drafted by the notary or solicitor. The contract should not differ from the promissory note. The contract must be signed by both parties following which conveyance must be carried out. In order to finish the conveyance, the notary goes to the land registry and public registry with a copy of the contract and registers it. The purchase is complete after registration, and the property belongs to its new owner.


Most banks are hesitant to provide mortgages to expats, but there are certain banks that specialize in this area. The different types of mortgages available in the Netherlands are: 

• Mortgages where the monthly costs stay the same but the amount of interest reduces the amount(annuiteit).

• Mortgages where you only have to pay interest (aflossingsvrij).

• Endowment mortgages (leven or spaar).

• Many ‘starter mortgages' for first-time buyers. 

You should shop around and see what works for you. If you'd like to ensure that you can pay your mortgage even if you are forced to sell your property for a lower price then take a look at the fine print on the National Mortgage Warranty (Nationale Hypotheel Garantie/NHG) by the Stichting Waarborgfonds Eigen Woningen.


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