Home Financials

Mortgage advice for expats

How to buy a house in The Netherlands step-by-step?


In this step-by-step plan you will gain insight into how you can buy your dream home step by step. Below are the 6 steps to buy a house in the Netherlands and to get an idea of ​​the entire buying process.

The first step is to determine your budget and research your Dutch mortgage options. What is the maximum mortgage you can borrow? How much are you willing to spend on a home? It is important that your home remains affordable so that you can still enjoy life.

For a rough indication, you can use our mortgage calculator. For an exact mortgage calculation, you can make a free appointment with one of our mortgage advisors at Home Financials.

After this appointment you will have a clear overview of your maximum Dutch mortgage and your monthly costs. This way you will know in which price range you should look for a house and avoid buying a house you cannot afford.

To search for a suitable home you can use the largest funda platform. You can browse on websites like Funda to find out which houses are for sale. I also recommend using the social media mediums and following the broker pages. And final to register for the new housing offer of the relevant broker. Since you already determined your budget for buying a house, you know which houses you can and cannot afford.

Have you found the perfect house? Then it’s time to call the real estate agent for planning a home viewing! If you work with a buying agent, you are more likely to have your eventual offer accepted. Of course, this is not a requirement and you can also arrange it yourself.

Make before you visit this house a list with questions which you want to ask. This means that when you’re buying a property in the Netherlands, you’ll have to gather information about the house you want to buy.

Don't forget to add the financial clause "subject to financing." In the Netherlands there are no pre-approvals or principle mortgages, so you need to be sure you can get a mortgage for what you are bidding.


Your offer has been accepted. Now it’s time to sign a presale agreement (koopakte). It must be drawn up by a lawyer and signed by both buyer and seller. As a buyer, you can protect yourself by signing a purchase agreement with a financial clause. This protects you if a mortgage lender decides to decline a mortgage application, enabling you to pull out of the sale without penalty.

Since you don't buy a home every day, the buyer also has a 3-day cooling-off period to cancel the deal without reason. When the cooling-off period is over, the purchase agreement is binding to both parties. Typically after arranging your mortgage, a deposit of 10% of the purchase price is required – if you don’t have this saved, your mortgage adviser can arrange a bank guarantee.

Now is the time to arrange your mortgage (hypotheek). You could do this directly with a bank or you could use a independent mortgage adviser from Home Financials. The advantage from an independent company is that they can compare many different mortgage products available to you. Mortgage brokers in the Netherlands typically work with more than 30 lenders, while banks represent only themselves. You usually have six weeks to finalise a mortgage.

There are also different types of mortgages – annuity, linear and interest-only – and an adviser can help you figure out which works best for your circumstances. In the Netherlands, you can borrow up to 100% of the purchase price – but make sure you are aware of the additional closing fees that you will need to pay as part of the purchase, and which are not included in your mortgage.

These are usually marked as kosten koper and include the transfer fee (overdrachtsbelasting), notary fees and valuation fees. The transfer fee is either 2% or 8% of the purchase price, depending on your situation.
Read more on this subject on our page

When buying a house in the Netherlands you will need to have the property appraised. This is a part of your mortgage file which in most cases is required by the lender. In the Netherlands the maximum mortgage you can get is based on the appraised value of the property. Lenders finance 100% of the market value of the home. We can mediate an independent appraiser in our services.

Transfer tax exemption
First-time buyers aged 18 to 34 are currently exempt from the transfer fee, provided the purchase price is no more than €440,000.
When the mortgage has been approved, it is important to insure your home against material damage. This includes damage to your home or your household effects due to fire, theft or damage.
Home Financials help you with these home insurance policies.

Nearly there! When your mortgage is approved, the final step is to sign a mortgage deed and a transfer contract (akte van levering) at the notary (notaris). Before that, your notary sends you a statement with the closing fees, which must be paid by the transfer date. The good news is that fees related to the mortgage are tax-deductible in the Netherlands.

If your Dutch skills aren’t so strong, the notary will require the presence of an interpreter to ensure you completely understand the terms of the contracts. And once every page has been signed and dated, the notary will inform the Dutch Land Registry (Kadaster) about the transfer, and you can walk away with the keys to your new home.

Congratulations, you now are a real homeowner!

What is your maximum mortgage in The Netherlands?

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