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DTMark

Amstersam/haarlem

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Hi

Just got back from a week away in the Netherlands. We've been planning on moving there for a little while and have been into local EAs, found some websites and resources and got a handle (we think) on what we ought to expect to pay over there.

It seems to run thus:

- 150k gets you a very small flat in reasonably central Amsterdam

- 250k gets quite a nice sized flat in Central Amsterdam (Kaisersgracht, Prinsengracht)

- 350k gets a decent sized flat in most except the best areas

- Prices are a little cheaper in Haarlem, but not much, but if you want a house not a flat it has to be Haarlem

We also went out to Utrecht and Den Haag but have pretty well settled on a house in Haarlem. We think... Utrecht seems much more "modern" and lacks the picture-postcard charm of Haarlem, which we were really taken by. However the central Amsterdam location does appeal even if it's West End (e.g. Leidseplein)

Looking at the press and property papers however quite a few properties seem to be on with more than one agent and there are a large number of 'open days' especially on property in Amsterdam itself. There also seem to be no end of new developments of flats.

I haven't followed the Dutch market very closely: does anyone here with more intimate knowledge know; is this a symptom of a slowing market over there in the same way that open days and the same home on with 4+ agents is rather like here with a vendor somehow convinced their property is worth X and nothing will change that, or is this more normal for the Dutch property market?

Back in Britain we get off the plane, go to get the train home - ah, there aren't any trains today. There are only buses which don't go where we're going. Silly me, I thought we wold be able to get a train at the train station. Only in Britain... £110 taxi fare later and we're home. The flight was less than that. God, get us out of this Country before I go insane.

Thanks

Mark

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We also went out to Utrecht and Den Haag but have pretty well settled on a house in Haarlem. We think... Utrecht seems much more "modern" and lacks the picture-postcard charm of Haarlem, which we were really taken by. However the central Amsterdam location does appeal even if it's West End (e.g. Leidseplein)

Looking at the press and property papers however quite a few properties seem to be on with more than one agent and there are a large number of 'open days' especially on property in Amsterdam itself. There also seem to be no end of new developments of flats.

I haven't followed the Dutch market very closely: does anyone here with more intimate knowledge know; is this a symptom of a slowing market over there in the same way that open days and the same home on with 4+ agents is rather like here with a vendor somehow convinced their property is worth X and nothing will change that, or is this more normal for the Dutch property market?

Back in Britain we get off the plane, go to get the train home - ah, there aren't any trains today. There are only buses which don't go where we're going. Silly me, I thought we wold be able to get a train at the train station. Only in Britain... £110 taxi fare later and we're home. The flight was less than that. God, get us out of this Country before I go insane.

Thanks

Mark

AFAIK the Dutch market has been in the 'slowly rising' category

since the plateau. We bought after the plateau and sold 6 months

ago with around 4% gains per year, graphs look 'slowly rising' too.

1998-2000 I had a 45 square meter flat on Waterlooplein (opposite the town hall,view over the Amstel) and I can highly recommend living in central Amsterdam (for young folks without kids). Some of my favourite memories are wandering back along the canals to my flat after a hot-summer night out on the terras (tables outside pubs/cafes). I sold my flat before the internet stock bubble burst to a techy account manager for about 150k (euros).

My guess is that if there is eventually a crash, probably due to ECB

raising rates, places in central Amsterdam will fare best. It's just

a fantastic place to live.

I'd say the bubble is still alive and kicking in stealth mode: several FTBers I knew couldn't afford to buy despite

extremely creative mortgage variations and full tax deduction of

mortgage interest in Holland, I'd say some of

them had some seething resentment about it. Also, the people that bought our house nearly had the whole thing called off by the bank because the guy had too much private debt. The bank demanded the father on the mortgage document instead of the son.

Pent

p.s. you realise your costs are usually 10% of the price buying in Holland ? On the other hand, that's offset quickly by the tax deduction

on the mortgage interest.

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The dutch housing market is experiencing now growth - small falls in the top end of the market. The lower end is still seeing sluggish growth. House growth has been steep and this lead to MEW supporting a booming economie. Now house prices are sluggish retail has been suffering for 2 years. It could go the same way as germany where 10 years of house price drops kept retail in the dolldrums.

It will be slowly as people have not got to sell in a hurry. Get unemployed means you get at least 70% of your last salary for 2 years. Also the smallness of the country combined with high stamp duties mean that dutch people do not move easily for work, they just commute a bit longer.

The government is looking into plans to gradually decrease the mortgages deductions you can have.

Other nice places with similar feel to Haarlem and Amsterdam are Leiden & Delft (my favourite).

Let me know if you want to know more.

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Many thanks for your feedback - very much appreciated.

The general "feel" of it seemed to be that of a market moving fairly slowly, like here, it's great to get feedback from people lucky enough to be there already. I might set up a "screen scrape" program to watch over Funda.nl and see how properties fare.

The actual prices of property compared with the UK (say Central London or Central Manchester) seemed cheap at first.

However is the clue in the average salaries: looking at a copy of Vlieg which has tables of mortgages and salaries, the annual salaries "jaar inkomen" quoted vary from 19k EUR to 51k EUR which is only about 35k GBP: as that is the figure at the bottom of the table/the highest one quoted, is 51k EUR considered a very good salary/in the top percentage of earners?

I'm not sure who prepared the table but it does suggest that on 51K EUR we should be able to obtain a mortgage of 361k EUR which does seem like madness and a very high multiple - again is this due to the tax deduction you mention which makes that kind of salary multiple affordable or is it more symptomatic of a market where prices have been inflated so high that lending rules have had to be relaxed?

We've been looking on the Internet at Leiden and Delft (that does sound very nice) and we'll visit those when we next go (just before Christmas) - thanks for the tip :)

The commuting aspect is an interesting one, as the trains are an incredible service compared to what we put up with here, so it really is possible to get about quickly and easily, so I can see that you can commute much further much more cheaply and painlessly than trying to actually get somewhere in Britain where a car is essential.

One of the most striking things about the Netherlands is the way in which you can see evidence of real planning and forethought in the way that places are set out, unlike here where everything kind of looks like it dropped from the sky and was left where it fell or was squashed into some place which simply wasn't big enough but we went ahead and built it anyway.

Waterlooplein is nice and Central, the general atmosphere and culture of Amsterdam (and I'm sure many other parts we haven't seen) is fantastic; I know we would spend a lot more time out and about in the evenings and so I guess the fact that most places are quite small isn't such an issue.

I guess the most similar and one of the best Cities we have is Cambridge, which is quite pleasant, but nothing compared with Amsterdam which is irresistable. However we do like turning the stereo up quite a bit so we'll need to get out of that habit in a flat :)

I note that Rabobank are offering discount mortgages (from what we can gather from the Dutch we know, it seems to be pitching at people remortgaging on a fixed rate to avoid the hike you mention) and those ads were all over the tram stops.

We'd rent for the first 6 or 12 months or so to make sure we got the area right then look to buy (or depending on the market hold off if it looks like it's falling and it would make sense to do so).

Do you know about the availability of broadband? Over here, you have to make sure that where you move is cabled so you can get broadband, or you take the risk of a non cabled area only served by BT (standard phone line) where you might or might not be able to get broadband depending on how near you live to the phone exchange and if your line can cope with it. I had thought that the Netherlands was almost all cabled and so broadband is much more widely available; is this something to watch out for?

On a final note: have you been to the Power Zone in Spaklerweg (sorry, spelling might be off on that one) and is it worth the trip out of town?

So many questions :) All feedback is really appreciated.

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I am from Holland originally but moved to the UK 8 years ago. I still go quite regularly home.

Broadband

I would not worry about broadband it is very competitive and you always have choice between ADSL and Cable (90% of Holland has got cable TV).

Jaarinkomen

51K in euros is quite high. And yes the mortgage multiples are that high due to mortgage deduction. However in holland home owners get additonal tax in the form of huurwaardeforfait. This is to partly offset the tax benefit. Most of my friends in holland take a 100% mortgage and stick money into interest accounts. Escpecially when you are in the high tax bracket of 50% this is very usefull as you can make money from your mortgage.

My parents have just sold in Holland and are moving just 3 kilomters over the dutch border in Germany. Houses there are 50% cheaper. A lot of older dutch people have moved over to Belgium as well. Especially the wealthy people as Holland has got wealth tax.

Yes Amsterdam is great, it has fantastic international feel and loads of tourist that come to get stoned. Leiden & Delft are university towns 100,000 big each and much less international and more dutch.

If i will ever go back to Holland i will buy in Delft, Den Bosch or Maastricht. Maastricht is different it is the oldest town in Holland and has a different feel. People are friendlier down south.

Also check this site. you can see the development in houseprices in amsterdam

http://www.hypotheker.nl/support/frameset....ing.asp&srow=95

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  • 301 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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