โ€œZero percent transfer tax does not make it easier for startersโ€

The

fact that starters no longer pay transfer tax since January 1, should give them a greater chance in the overstretched housing market. But Rabobank and notaries expect the opposite effect. They think starters will use the money they save to bid more on homes.

As a

result, house prices will rise even further, while supply is already so limited. Especially now that figures from the professional association of notaries show that investors have bought houses on a large scale, because from this year they will have to pay more transfer tax.

โ€œ On a three-tonne house, you will save around 6000 euros in transfer tax, which is a financial support for start-ups,โ€ says Carola de Groot, Rabobank housing specialist. โ€œBut they‘ll probably use that financial advantage to offer more, in the heat of battle.โ€

And in this way, the starters increase the purchase price, which will also increase house prices further, says Annerie Ploumen, president of the Royal Notarial Professional Organisation. โ€œThe new law does not make it easier for starters to find a home.โ€

Secretary of State Hans Vijlbrief of Finance says that it is true that the measures have a slightly price-raising effect. โ€œBut this gives starters a relatively better position in the tense housing market. So it’s not counterproductive,โ€ says Vijlbrief. โ€œFor starters, 2021 will be a better year.โ€

Starters Joram and Melany have been looking for a house for months. Their budget is up to two tons. They always fish behind the net, because there are almost no houses for sale in that price range. The question is whether the lack of the transfer tax will help them:

House prices have already risen considerably in the past year. โ€œInvestors still wanted to benefit from the low rate of two percent,โ€ says De Groot. โ€œThey made their purchases before 1 January, resulting in an additional demand for housing. The offer became smaller and the prices were higher.โ€

โ€œ In December 2020, the number of houses purchased is 55 percent higher compared to 2019, says Ploumen. โ€œThese are, in particular, investors who buy up homes and business premises, because the transfer tax for this particular property has increased on 1 January.โ€

According to the Secretary of State, that was not the intention, but he would have expected that effect. He assumes that investors will buy fewer properties after January 1, and starters will buy more. โ€œWhat will happen to the prices of housing, we do not know. At least it‘s a little push in the back of the starters.โ€

Build, build, build

What starters will really help in the end? โ€œThat we are going to build more,โ€ says Secretary of State Vijlbrief. โ€œThe cabinet has already built 75,000 homes per year in recent years, but for the next cabinet there is also a huge task.โ€

Housing market specialist De Groot underlines that. โ€œAt the moment, we are short of 331,000 houses, according to the Ministry of Internal Affairs.โ€ It is expected that this deficit will increase further. โ€œTo 419,000 houses towards 2025.โ€

Therefore, according to Ploumen, we need to help project developers with real land and land lease prices in cities. โ€œTo ensure that they have the opportunity to build and offer those starter homes. I think that’s the real solution.โ€

Watch this video in which Nieuwsuur explores creative initiatives to stimulate the flow of the housing market: