Existing owner-occupied homes were 18.8% more expensive in May than the year before. That is a significant price increase, but prices seem to be stabilizing. Is the housing market finally cooling off?
The value of an average owner-occupied home rose by 18.8% last year, according to a measurement by Statistics Netherlands and the Land Registry .
Prices seem to be gradually stabilizing as a result. In April the price increase was 19.7%, in March 19.5%, in February 20.2% and in January 21.1%.
House prices have been on the rise for exactly nine years now. Since their low point in June 2013, they have risen by as much as 98%, almost doubling.
Average house price: €429,077
But compared to May last year there is a big difference. Back then, an average owner-occupied home cost €361,001. This means that an average owner-occupied home has become more than €68,000 more expensive in one year: more than one and a half average annual salary.
Home sales continue to fall
In addition to house prices, the number of homes sold is also steadily decreasing. Last month 15,749 homes changed hands. That is more than 2% less than a year earlier.
If we look at the number of housing transactions over the past five months, the decline is much greater. From January to May, 75,644 houses were sold: almost 26% less than in the same period last year.
The fact that this decrease is much larger is probably due to a peak in home sales in the first months of 2021, making the basis for comparison high. Because the transfer tax for starters up to the age of 35 was abolished in 2021, many young people who actually wanted to buy a house in 2020 have probably extended their relocation plans over the New Year.
Significant rise in mortgage interest
The big question is: are we seeing the first signs of a cooling housing market here? Yes, says De Hypotheker . The mortgage advisory chain refers to the sharp rise in mortgage interest rates.
The average mortgage rate with a fixed-rate period of ten years rose last week from 3.48% to 3.81%: an increase of 0.33 percentage point. Mortgage interest rates have not risen that quickly since the start of the financial crisis in 2008, according to De Hypotheker.
Fewer viewings and bids
According to the mortgage broker, real estate agents are now also noticing that homes for sale are less popular and are also less likely to be sold. After all, if the mortgage interest rate is higher, you can get a lower mortgage, making homes too expensive for potential home buyers.
De Hypotheker cites a recent article from the AD, in which real estate agency Makelaarsland reported that the average number of viewings per home has fallen from 13.1 in the second quarter of 2021 to 7.8 in the second quarter of this year. The average number of bids also decreased from 6 to 4.6.
And outbid less
It was also remarkable that, according to Makelaarsland, less is being outbid on homes. In June last year, more than 88% of the homes sold were selling above the asking price WITH AT&T Insurance. That has now dropped to almost 71%. The average amount of outbids is also said to have fallen.