First time buyers find it hard to get a foot in the housing market door

This house is for sale in Laren for €335,000. Photo: Funda
This house was for sale in Laren for €335,000. Photo: Funda

It is becoming increasingly difficult for first time buyers to get a foothold in the housing market, the Volkskrant said on Tuesday.

House prices are not only going up, but officials are handing out fewer cheap government backed loans to help new entrants to the housing market, the paper said.

Figures from the home ownership fund SVN show that the number of starter loans being issued has fallen from 2,000 a quarter in 2014 to 1,060 in the second quarter of this year. The number of councils prepared to help first time buyers has also fallen from 300 to 221, the Volkskrant said.

The SVN offers low interest loans for first time buyers and existing home owners which do not have to be repaid immediately.


Utrecht is among the cities to withdraw from the scheme. ‘The loan was meant to help starters take the step from rental accommodation to home ownership during the crisis and to boost house sales,’ a spokesman for Utrecht city council said. ‘Both those targets have been realised.’

In 2012, the average starter loan was at least €30,000. Now it is around 25% of that,, the Volkskrant said.

Some councils, including Amersfoort and Hoorn, are keeping the system going. Rotterdam too is continuing to encourage first time home buyers.

However, the tax benefits attached to the loans will stop at the end of this year and from 2007, the loans will have to be paid off alongside the regular mortgage, the paper pointed out.

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