Exemption from the overdrachtsbelasting

Good news for young families thinking about buying their house! Starting 2021, changes are happening for what concerns the costs involved in buying a house. This means if you meet certain requirements (among which age), you may be exempt from paying taxes on the transfer. That’s quite a serious difference! Curious if this applies to you? Read the post further.

Last year we shared a post detailing the costs involved in buying a house. Among the costs there was the overdrachtsbelasting (a transfer fee) amounting to 2% of the price of the house, that needed to be available independently of the mortgage (if you remember, those “about 30000 euros” that you need to have before starting off the whole process of purchasing a house).

Since the beginning of 2021, the overdrachtbelasting is not the same for all buyers. In laymen terms, if you are young and buying your house for living, then you may be exempt from these taxes.

When is the buyer exempt from the overdrachtbelasting?

There are some conditions on the house and on the buyer for the exemption to hold

  • the buyer is a natural person (and not a company)
  • the buyer is going to use the property for living (needs to be declared in a statement (verklaring))
  • the buyer is aged between 18 and 35 years old
  • the buyer is asking the exemption for the first time (needs to be declared in a statement (verklaring))
  • the house is worth no more than 400000 euros (NB this restriction does not hold for transactions happening before April 1st 2021!)

Do you reply yes to all points above? Then you will not pay the transaction fee. For example, on a house worth 300000 euro, you will save 6000 euro in one shot, and you will thus need less money to start off the process of purchase. Nice eh!


Other rules hold for older buyers and investors. In case you do not meet the requirements above, then there are two other options.

A transaction fee amounting to 8% of the value of the house holds if the buyer is not a natural person or the house is not purchased for living (but, for example, for renting).

The old 2% fee on the value of the house is charged in all other cases: if the buyer does not fit in the age range, if it’s not the first time requesting the exemption or if the house is worth more than 400000 euro (again, this threshold will kick in only starting April 1st, 2021).

Useful websites

  • Government’s page on the exemption rule (link here)

Useful words

(de) overdrachtsbelasting – transaction fee
(de) verklaring – statement
(de) vrijstelling – exemption

Might you have questions or comments, do not hesitate to reach out to me. Also if you like reading this sort of information, like, comment, share it! Sharing is a way to help other finding useful information and supporting me to keep writing!


Featured image by Benedikt Geyer on Unsplash. Disclaimer.

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