Pilot project to sell housing online flops, sellers unwilling to take part

Detached Dutch house with For Sale sign.
Photo: Depositphotos.com

An experiment in selling homes online has flopped, with just 25 home owners taking part in five months, the Volkskrant said on Tuesday.

Real estate agents association NVM ran the experiment in Groningen and Amsterdam and had hoped at least 100 homes would be put up for sale online.

NVM chairman Ger Jaarsma told the paper that sellers are worried their homes will be sold for less than in the current system of sealed bids. The idea of the online auction is to bring more transparency to the process, he said.

‘Our initial conclusion is that it works well for buyers but it remains to be seen if enough sellers are willing to take part,’ he said.

‘It is extremely difficult to find home owners who want to do this,’ Amsterdam real estate agent Sven Heinen told the paper. ‘Real estate agents are also opposed to the idea. They are worried about losing trades and influence.’

House prices have gone up some 10% in Groningen over the past year and by some 22% in Amsterdam, according to recent figures.

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