When renting
It is common that landlords or rental agencies require a deposit, called ‘borg’. This can be up to three months’ worth of rent. Sometimes a commission is also required, this will typically be equal to one month’s rent.

When purchasing a property
Most people finance their property with a mortgage, called ‘hypotheek’. There are several types of mortgages, which will have different implications for your financial situation. Specialists at your bank of choice can guide you through this. It is also possible to hire an independent advisor to decide which financial construction would be best for you.

In the Netherlands, a notary validates the purchase all property. This we call the ‘overdracht’, the transfer of the property from one owner to the next. Only after the ‘overdracht’ the property is yours, even though you will already have made the legal commitment to buying it by signing the real estate contract.

After you have signed the real estate contract, you have three days to contemplate and possibly regret the purchase of the house or apartment. You do not have to specify why you want to annul the purchase if you decide to do so.

It is also advisable to include terms of annulment in the real estate contract. This can be done by the notary and could for example include a clause stating that the purchase will be terminated if you fail to get a mortgage. You may also extend the contemplating period of three days, but this should be stated in the contract and be agreed upon by both the buyer and seller. It is not allowed to shorten the period.

You can find a certified notary at the Koninklijke Notariële Beroepsorganisatie.

When you buy property in the Netherlands, you will encounter additional costs, that will be added to the price of the property itself. Additional costs can include, but are not limited to:

Expenses concerned with the purchasing of the house/apartment

  • Buying expenses (aankoopkosten)
    – Fee for the real estate agency, if applicable
    – Fee for the inspection of the house by a specialist, if applicable
    – Costs of taxation of the property
  • Buyers’ expenses (kosten koper), which amongst others consist of:
    – Registering at the Kadaster, a national register which collects and registers administrative and spatial data on property and the rights involved
    – Tax you pay to become a house owner (overdrachtsbelasting)
    – Other expenses concerning the ‘overdracht’, paid to the notary
  • Costs involving financial services
    – Provision to your bank
    – Fee for the notary

Structural costs for home owners

  • Insurance
    – It is mandatory to be insured against damages in case of fire, storm and burglary. This type of insurance is called ‘opstalverzekering’
    – If you have bought an apartment, you might also have to pay for insurance in the owners association
    – In many cases you will also have to have life insurance
  • Tax
    – You will have to pay real estate tax (onroerendezaakbelasting, or OZB) to the municipality. The municipality revises this tax on a yearly basis and it is based on the value of your house (called ‘WOZ-waarde’). Check your municipality’s website for more information