Dutch housing market increasingly inaccessible to average-earning singles

Dutch housing market increasingly inaccessible to average-earning singles

Real estate organisation De Hypotheeker has reported that unmarried / single people with average incomes have extremely limited opportunities to buy property in the Netherlands. According to their figures, only 3 percent of housing is financially accessible to them. 

The Dutch housing market: Competitive and inaccessible

It is a known fact that the Dutch housing market is extremely competitive; as supply is limited, house prices continue to rise at astonishing rates, with many prospective buyers having to overbid in order to ensure the success of their purchase. Combined, all of these factors make it extremely difficult for first-time buyers and young professionals to get their foot on the property ladder. 

New figures from De Hypotheeker reveal just how difficult it is for many young people in the Netherlands. Even though changes to Dutch law have made it easier for single people and first-time buyers to take out a bigger mortgage, only 3,3 percent of the current housing supply is financially accessible to single people earning an average income in the Netherlands.

The average annual income in the Netherlands for 2021 is 36.500 euros (excluding holiday pay). Earning this salary will allow a single person to take out a mortgage of approximately 188.000 euros (a slight improvement on last year’s 169.000 euros), while couples or married people looking to buy property can expect to take out a mortgage of around 344.000 euros.

Rotterdam the most affordable city, Amsterdam and Utrecht the least

Unsurprisingly, prospective buyers looking for property in North Holland (i.e. Amsterdam, Alkmaar, Haarlem) and Utrecht face some of the most inaccessible markets, while anyone looking to purchase property in Groningen or Friesland face slightly better odds - although supply in these regions still remains scarce.

In the northernmost Dutch provinces, affordable housing accounts for approximately 16,7 percent (Groningen) and 11,1 percent (Friesland) of the total supply. Meanwhile, in North Holland and Utrecht, only 1,3 percent and 1,1 percent of housing is considered affordable for this demographic. Interestingly, the province with the lowest proportion of affordable housing is North Brabant (1 percent). 

The Dutch cities with the most inaccessible housing markets are Eindhoven (0,6 percent), Utrecht (1 percent), and, of course, Amsterdam (0,2 percent). While Rotterdam has the highest proportion of affordable housing - 2,3 percent - the outlook remains bleak.

More options for couples looking to buy a house in the Netherlands

There are slightly more opportunities for couples looking to purchase a home together. According to De Hypotheeker, average-earning couples should be able to afford 36,2 percent of property on the market.

Similarly to single people, couples face the most opportunities in Groningen (66,4 percent) and Friesland (57,4 percent), while in Drenthe, Limburg, and Zeeland over 50 percent of the housing supply is considered affordable to this demographic. Even the most inaccessible markets, Utrecht and North Holland, are more affordable (24,4, percent and 24,7 percent respectively).

Thumb via Shutterstock.

Victoria Séveno


Victoria Séveno

Victoria grew up in Amsterdam, before moving to the UK to study English and Related Literature at the University of York and completing her NCTJ course at the Press Association...

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mokumhammer 11:51 | 20 August 2021

''The average annual income in the Netherlands for 2021 is 36.500 euro'' Are you sure? Based on Mean, Median or Mode?