Dramatic drop in new housing sales

Sales of new houses dropped 15% in the first quarter of 2011, the project developers’ association Neprom said on Tuesday.

Director Jan Fokkema expects total sales over the whole of 2011 to drop by 50% on their level before the financial crisis of 2008.
Project developers blame the drop on the tighter mortgage regulations brought in by the financial sector watchdog AFM. They want the new rule requiring house buyers to pay back half the loan, ending the use of interest only mortgages, dropped. And, they say, good insulation in new houses should also be taken into account when assessing mortgage options.
‘Lower energy costs are hardly considered but they should offer €20,000 in flexibility when negotiating a mortgage,’ Fokkema told the Financieele Dagblad.

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