The average size of a mortgage has gone down for the first time in three years, in a further indication that the overheated Dutch housing market may be cooling down.
Mortgage broker De Hypotheker reported on Friday that the average mortgage it agreed in the second quarter of the year was €322,000, which is down €4,000 on the same period last year. It also the first year on year decline since 2019.
There are wide regional variations, De Hypotheker said, with the biggest declines in Groningen and Flevoland. And in Zeeland, Limburg, Friesland and Drenthe borrowing is still going up.
‘The sharp rise in mortgage interest rates is having more of an impact,’ De Hypotheker director Michel van den Akker said. ‘There are signs that the housing market is beginning to cool down. People can borrow less and monthly costs are going up thanks to the higher interest rates.’
While the market is still extremely tight because of the shortage of homes to buy, ‘there is clearly less competition and buyers are less inclined to outbid each other,’ he said.
The number of mortgage requests processed by the company also fell 2% year on year.
Meanwhile, three estate agents’ associations – NVM, VBO and Vastgoedpro – are setting up a register of bids in an effort to boost transparency about the process.
The register will be open to everyone who bid on particular property – as long as they used an estate agent who is a member of one of the three organisations – once the sale has been completed.
The three associations have also set up their own disciplinary committee to enforce the codes of conduct for estate agents, valuation experts and engineers who check whether or not a building is not going to collapse. They are also working on a new complaints system for when things do go wrong. That will be operational after the summer.
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