Coalition party ChristenUnie wants to stop the government pressing ahead with mortgage market reforms which would allow couples to fully count both their incomes in a mortgage application, the Financieele Dagblad reported on Wednesday.
From next year, the ‘second’ income will count 100% when working out how much a couple can spend. At the moment only 90% is added to the mortgage calculations.
‘We are currently only thinking about building, but we should also look at micro developments in the housing market,’ ChristenUnie MP Pieter Grinwis said. ‘The more people can borrow, the higher house prices get.’
The Dutch central bank has also argued that house prices have risen so much because people can borrow more money.
Allowing couples to borrow even more money will only disadvantages singles and single income households, Grinwis said. ‘It is increasing the lack of equal opportunities on the housing market.’
Years ago, only 50% of a couple’s second salary was included when calculating how much they could borrow. That was based on the concept that women worked less and would stop or reduce their hours when they had children.
Since then the percentage has increased and the family spending institute Nibud says that from 2023 the standard should be 100%.
The government is also planning to scrap the tax free gift which parents can give their offspring to help them buy a house from next year.
Tax minister Marnix van Rij said on Tuesday that the €106,000 gift will be cut to a maximum of €27,231 from 2023.
A majority of MPs wanted the gift to be scrapped completely in 2023 but this is impossible because of tax office IT problems, Van Rij said.
Nevertheless, as parents could already give their children €27,231 tax free to spend on what they like, the house premium has effectively been eliminated, Van Rij told MPs. The tax free gift will formally disappear in 2024.
Housing minister Hugo de Jonge said the decision is an ‘important step which contributes to a more level playing field between first time buyers and will reduce inequality.’
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