More expensive rental market is ‘fallback market’

In the publicity, of course, it is often about the rising rental and sales prices and recently also about the rising mortgage interest rates. This is logical, because it all has direct consequences for your wallet. Yet other information sometimes remains underexposed. An example is the presentation of the results of the large-scale housing survey, which provides insight into the housing situation and wishes of Dutch households. This survey is conducted once every three years by Statistics Netherlands and the Ministry of the Interior. This month the results of the recent survey were shared.

An important outcome is the increase in the number of private rental homes. Especially the free rental segment increased in size: by 56% from 415,000 to 638,000 homes. The share of medium rental housing also grew. The researchers point out that these homes should mainly be seen as a temporary solution for a specific target group: young singles and couples with a high income. “These people want to move on to an owner-occupied home. It is, as it were, a fallback segment for the owner-occupied market. The demand for owner-occupied housing is greater than ever measured. Of the households that are actively looking, 61% want a house for sale,” said one of the researchers when presenting the results.

And the number of households looking for another home is huge: 3.2 million households want to move within two years and of these, 1.7 million are really actively looking. The number of moves has increased by 3%. And that in a market of which we all know how tight it is! Due to the tight supply, the flow from rental to owner-occupied housing has decreased. Especially households with a high income make that transition.

For me, these research results are a confirmation of what I already knew. For many Dutch people, owning their own home may not be the most important thing (health comes first), but it is still very highly regarded. Home ownership is worth its weight in gold. It would be good to take this into account when planning the construction of housing. Of course, a good and balanced supply of rental housing remains important, but do not let the construction of new owner-occupied housing – also in the lower price segment – fall by the wayside.