Hopeful home buyers rush to beat mortgage change deadline

Home buyers are rushing to beat the January 1 deadline which will end tax relief on all but repayment mortgages, the Financieele Dagblad reports.

‘There is a run on property,’ Pieter van Santvoort, owner of one of the country’s biggest estate agent groups Van Santvoort Makelaars, told the paper. ‘We are dealing with double the number of transactions as a year ago.’
The country’s leading mortgage agent De Hypotheker also reports the number of mortgage requests has doubled.
Aegon, one of the country’s biggest mortgage providers, is processing 40% more requests and banks have put on extra staff to cope with the demand, the paper says.
Tax deduction
From January 1, 2013 tax relief will be limited to repayment mortgages only. This means popular mortgage forms such as a savings-based mortgage (spaarhypotheek) or interest-only mortgage (aflossingsvrij hypotheek) will no longer qualify for tax relief.
Existing mortgages are not affected.
Rabobank, the country’s biggest mortgage provider with some 40% of the market, expects house prices to fall a further 7% in 2013. Compared with the market peak of 2008, house prices are down by over 15%.
Almost 50% of the 228,000 homes currently on the market have been for sale for more than one year.
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