Monday, August 27th, 2018
The BEST way for expats to buy a house in the Netherlands
Are you thinking about buying a house in the Netherlands? Lots of expats do at some point during their stay. Especially when they learn that you can sell your house again at any time. With the sky-high rental prices in most of the bigger Dutch cities, who can blame them?
The process to buy a house in the Netherlands can be confusing though. Trust us, it’s confusing for everyone, not just for expats. It’s not like this is something you’ll do often. How many houses have you bought in your life?
So, what if we told you that there was an easy way to get the financing for your new home done? Wouldn’t you just drop everything you’re doing to get that inside scoop? We know that you know what’s coming next but please hear us out – this is going to be good.
Hiring a financial advisor is the easiest way to buy a house. And if you hire us, don’t worry about the fees. We’re licensed in the Netherlands to set up your mortgage so you won’t have to pay any other fee than the fee we charge if you decide to take out your mortgage with us. And that fee is even tax deductible. And we can set you up with a tax advisor to help you file those taxes. It’s a win-win situation.
We know that you’re probably thinking: what’s the catch? But seriously, you can’t lose here. You get all the advice you need, all the help you need via just one financial consultant: either Liaget or Serge.
So, if you’re still with us knowing this kind of is a total self-promoting blog, here’s how the process of buying a house works in the Netherlands – that is if you let us help you.
Step 1: Find out how much money you can borrow
Before you start hunting for a house, it’s good to know how much you can spend on your house. So, make an appointment for an orientation meeting (it’s free and non-binding with us) to calculate what you can borrow. The amount you can borrow is based on your income. Your income is made up of your gross salary including your holiday allowance and your 13th month. Some banks even include your bonuses, expatriation allowance and the advantage you have if you’re eligible for the 30% ruling.
We give you mortgage advice that is tailored to your personal situation and wishes. We explain what the perfect mortgage structure is in your situation, what the interest rates are, and what will happen to your mortgage in special situations. Such as in case of retirement, death, disability or extra repayments.
Step 2: House hunting
Once your mortgage is calculated, you can start house hunting for houses in the price range of your mortgage. Starting 2018, you can only use your mortgage to finance your house. You can’t use your mortgage to buy furniture or even to pay for advisory, notary, or taxation costs. Those costs, however, are tax deductible.
For house hunting, you either have the choice to hire a realtor, or you can search for a house yourself. In the current hot as fire housing market, you do have an advantage when you have a realtor because they usually know about new houses going to the market before they’re actually on the market. Don’t worry about finding a good realtor yourself, we have plenty of contacts with good realtors that we can set you up with.
If you do decide to search for a house on your own however that’s totally fine as well. The website with the biggest choice in houses in the Netherlands is www.funda.nl. From that website, you can just call the selling realtor and make an appointment to see the house. Lots of houses have specified visiting times so you can just go to those visiting hours, see the house and place a bid.
Step 3: Sign a provisional purchase contract
Once you found a house and were able to agree with the current homeowners about the price of the house, you can go on and sign a provisional purchase contract. Don’t let the word provisional confuse you, this is actually a binding contract. After receiving the contract, you have 3 days to change your mind. If you change your mind after those 3 days, you’ll have to pay a fine that’s 10% of the price you’ve agreed to pay for the house.
You can, however, put limiting conditions in the contract. Those conditions help dissolve the contract without having to pay the fine. One of the conditions often mentioned in such contracts is the condition that your mortgage comes through. It’s also a good idea to include the condition of an approval of an architectural inspection. If you let an architectural engineer (we can set you up with one as well) inspect the home you want to buy, you can make sure that the house doesn’t have any defects that can cost you a lot of money. And if a defect is found, the condition in your contract allows you to renegotiate the price so you have money left to fix the defect. The best time to get the inspection done is in the 3 days after you’ve received the provisional purchase contract.
Next stop: back to your financial advisor to complete your mortgage filing.
Step 4: Financing your new home
We help you to collect and check all documents needed to complete your mortgage filing. We also check the complete file for correctness and send it to the bank to get the approval for your mortgage. Throughout the entire process, you won’t ever have to get in touch with the bank. We do that for you. Once your mortgage is approved, we’ll send all the documents to the notary.
Step 5: Get the keys to your new home
The last step in the process is to go to the notary to sign the deed of delivery. The notary is usually chosen by the buying party. We can connect you to one of the certified notaries in our network if needed. At this appointment you meet with the current homeowners and the notary will explain what’s written in the deed. Once the deed is signed by you, the sellers of the house and the notary, you’re the new homeowner and receive the keys to your new home. The bank will transfer the mortgage to the notary and the notary pays all involved parties.
We couldn’t make this any easier if we tried
See how easy that was? Either Liaget or Serge will guide you through every step of buying your new home. We’re all about making your life in the Netherlands as easy and comfortable as possible. That’s why we don’t stop at helping you to finance your new home. To really take the burden off for you, we even set up your utilities such as water, electricity, gas, and internet. Just like with every other advice we give, we’re unbiased and give you options to choose from.
Imagine yourself sitting in your new living room that first night after you’ve moved in. You’re relaxed and your house is fully functional. You think to yourself: “I’ve never moved houses this fast and easy. Heck, I’m not even tired!”
Are you ready to get serious about buying a house? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a free non-binding orientation meeting.
Or, read more about mortgages here.