Buying real estate in the Netherlands


When you are starting your own business in the Netherlands, you will need to buy or lease commercial real estate in the Netherlands. Also, you could consider to buy a house in the Netherlands as well when you will reside here for a long time.

The processes involved leasing or buying property in the Netherlands, whether this is commercial or non-commercial, are subject to certain legal requirements. Van Eert Accountants & Advisers can assist you in obtaining real estate in the Netherlands. We can refer you to different specialists that can help you close a real estate deal as well. 

Can foreigners buy or lease real estate in the Netherlands?

The answer is: yes. The Netherlands does not have any restrictions in place on the purchase of commercial and noncommercial real estate by foreigners, whether resident or non-resident. The same goes for leasing property in the Netherlands. So, foreigners can freely buy and lease real estate, but it can be a difficult process for people from outside the Netherlands. That is why calling in the help of specialists is advised.

Should you buy or lease real estate in the Netherlands?

The Netherlands has a lot of social- and rent controlled housing. These are mostly restricted to low-income households. This makes it harder to find a house or apartment for lease at reasonable prices. There are tax benefits for people who buy their home, and mortgage costs are often lower than rent. However, it is recommended to lease a property, when you have just arrived or when you are planning to stay less than three years.

Finding real estate in the Netherlands

When you are looking for commercial or noncommercial real estate in the Netherlands, you can easily find property listings online. However, it is not advised to buy property without the help of specialists. It is very common to use a real estate agent, in Dutch makelaar, in the Netherlands. Van Eert Accountants and Advisers can give you extended advise regarding the specialist you should involve in the real estate-buying process.

Buying a property in the Netherlands

When you have found real estate in the Netherlands you can make an offer and begin negotiations via your realtor. After agreeing on the sale price, certain formal steps to close the deal have to be taken:

  1. The buyer and seller sign a pre-sale agreement
  2. A notary is selected who holds the signed contract
  3. You as the buyer have to pay a deposit of ten percent
  4. If you require a mortgage to complete the sale, now is the time to arrange it
  5. Buyer and seller sign a completion contract at the notary
  6. The notary registers the property transfer at the land registry office to complete the transaction.

Legal requirements for buying real estate in the Netherlands

Dutch law requires that a notary performs the property registration process. The costs of a notary varies. It could be a percentage of the property price, a fixed fee or an hourly rate. The total costs can vary between €1,000 and €3,000, so it is definitely worth it to shop around for the best deal.

If one or more of the parties involved in the real estate transaction is not a Dutch citizen, a translator is required to attend the notary meetings. Even if the non-citizen is fluent in Dutch, an accredited translator is required. 

Van Eert Accountants & Advisers can assist you in buying real estate in the Netherlands

As experts in the field of Dutch law regarding for example business transactions, accounting and real estate, we can assist and advise you in your complete move to the Netherlands as an entrepreneur. Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information. We’ll be happy to assist you.  

  • drs. W.A.K.H.F. van der Pol RA  

    'Business is: think before you act, but sometimes it’s just taking the risk.'

    drs. W.A.K.H.F. van der Pol RA