How much does owning a house cost in the Netherlands? An overview in 5 sections

What are the costs involved in owning a house in the Netherlands? Think about taxes, mortgage and utilities. Of course, there is huge variability due to the dimension of the house, the energy efficiency, the way you use it (e.g. partially commercial), how many people are living in it and so on – but this is to give an order of magnitude, and allow you to orientate yourself in your choices, for example between renting and buying.
If you are weighting the choice, you may also be interested in the process of buying a house, and in the costs involved in the process.

Since there is large variability in all options, the estimates must be taken as such, and you will have to check the specific costs involved in owning a house in your municipality.
But if you just want to get an idea, this will do the job for an house in the 250.000-300.000 market segment. In the table below you can find a summary of the costs.

mortgage1000
taxes (yearly amount divided by 12)79,80
insurances49
utilities (water, gas and electricity, internet and tv)156
1284,80
Overview of (example) monthly costs involved in owning the example house

For the reference house mentioned above thus, you can expect to spend on average between 1000 and 1500 euro per month. The voices mentioned in the table are then broadly explained in the sections below (you can access them by scrolling or clicking on the links in the table).
What we did not compute in the average monthly expenses are the reconstruction and maintenance costs, as these are even more variable and difficult to predict. However, we have mentioned the most important (and somehow foreseeable) expenses that happen in the maintenance of a property house.

Mortgage

Assuming there is not a full financial availability to buy a house in one shot, you’ll need to resort to a mortgage to afford it.
How much a mortgage costs per month depends on the house price, on the length of the mortgage and on the type of the loan (fixed or variable interest rate, annuiteit or lineair).
I think for the 250.000 – 300.000 sector of the housing market in Eindhoven, a typical mortgage would be over 30 years with interest rate fixed at 10 years and cost something between 800 and 1000 euro per month.

Of course, reducing the length would increase the monthly price and having variable interest rate would make a prediction of the monthly costs impossible. To get a better idea of it, you can use online tools of various banks such as Rabobank, ABN AMRO, ING.

Taxes

Yearly you will pay some taxes for the maintenance of the common services. Some of them are exclusively for property owners, others are for residents in general (thus also when renting). At least in Eindhoven, you can expect to receive payment request of such taxes at the end of February.
Again, we provide the example amount for a three people household in Eindhoven, but the precise amounts may vary per municipality, type of house and household. To check precisely the amount you are going to pay, you can type the name of the tax (in bold below) and the name of your municipality (or a large municipality close to you). In most cases big cities have very informative websites!

  • Onroerende zaakbelasting (OZB) – property taxes
    As owner of the house, you pay yearly the OZB taxes to the municipality. The amount depends on the value of the house (the WOZ waarde), and the use of the house.
    In Eindhoven, owning a house for living, in 2021 you will pay 0,10930% of the WOZ value of the house (at 1 January 2021) as OZB.
    Example: for a house worth 250000 euro, you will pay 273.25 euro for the whole year.
  • Afvalstoffheffing
    This tax is for the management of waste in the municipality. It is paid when registered a certain address (thus both when renting and owning a property), and it is proportional to the number of people living in the house.
    For a household of three people in Eindhoven, this tax in 2021 will be 281.49 euro.
  • Rioolheffing eigenaar woning
    This tax is paid only by property owners, and it is a contribution to the municipality for the maintenance and good functioning of the sewerage system. In Eindhoven, this tax in 2021 is 156 euro per property.

Taxes you pay to the company managing the water system and purification

  • Zuiveringsheffing – water purification taxes
    This tax is paid to the company managing the water system in your municipality. The service you are paying for with this tax is essentially the purification of wastewater (e.g. from the toilet, the bath and the kitchen). This tax is paid by people registered at a certain address, and thus also if you rent (maybe you won’t see this voice explicitly, but it will be part of ‘taxes’ or ‘fixed costs’ in your rental agreement). In case of properties used for living, the amount of zuiveringsheffing varies with the number of people registered at that address: 1 person pays 1 “pollution unit”, while >1 people pay always 3 “pollution units”. Furthermore, you pay this tax only for the time period you make use of the residence. For a household of 2+ people in Eindhoven, this tax in 2021 is 153.72 euro.
  • Watersysteemheffing ingezetenen – taxes for the management of water system (for residents). This is a fixed amount that you pay for the management of the water system, including the control of water level (a big thing in the Netherlands) and water quality.
    In Eindhoven in 2021 we pay 43.90 euro for this.
  • Watersysteemheffing gebouwd – taxes for the management of water system (for property owners).
    This depends on the WOZ value of the house. In 2021 in Eindhoven we pay 0,01971% of the WOZ waarde, thus for a house worth 250000, this tax will amount to 49.275 euro.

(total taxes about 957.635 euro per year)

Insurances

When owning a house, it may be convenient to have an insurance on the building. In some cases (e.g. mortgage), it is even compulsory to have one – the opstalverzekering. You can choose the provider you prefer, and to get oriented you may want to use a comparator like independer.nl.

  • Opstalverzekering
    Insurance on the building itself, it is compulsory when you have the mortgage on your house. There are various factors that influence the cost of this insurance, like the year of building and the type of roof.
    We are with AON, and pay 21 euro per month.
  • Inboedelverzekering
    This insurance is on your properties inside the house. You therefore may want to have this insurance also if you are renting a place. It covers you for example in case of stealing or breaking things, and it is up to a coverage specified by you. We are with AON, and pay 12 euro per month.
  • Life insurance
    When buying our house, and taking that frightening step, we have decided also to make a life insurance for the duration of the mortgage.
    We chose Dela and pay about 16 euro per month (including both).

Utilities

  • Gas and Electricity
    The system to pay utilities is based on an initial annual estimation that is paid monthly. Each calendar year then, there is an adjustment of that initial estimation (voorschot) to match the actual consumptions: you pay an additional amount in case you consumed more, or you receive money back otherwise. We have initially searched on internet the expected consumption, and then reduced it the next year based on the provider’s suggestion. We have chosen Energiedirect, and pay at the moment 90 euro per month.
  • Water
    Beside the taxes for the water system mentioned above, there are costs about water consumption.
    We pay 26 euro per month to Brabant Water (you do not choose the water provider).
  • Internet and TV connection
    We are with Budget-alles-in-1 already for more about 2 years now, and we pay about 40 euro per month. We are rather happy about the service. The customer support is the most painful part of it, but that’s the price you have to pay to save some money and be contractor with a smaller company.
    Saving tip: instead of going month by month, consider having a contract. It will constrain you for a couple of years, but it comes with a financial advantage.

Reconstruction and maintenance costs

About this, it is almost impossible to give a good quantification of the costs.
It depends on how old your house is, how much you want to change in it and on the life expectation of its components. However, there are some variables you may already take into account when planning to buy/buying a house. Being prepared on these factors when viewing the house, will also make yourself more aware of the offer you may want to make.

  • Roof
    It is highly dependent on the condition of the roof when you step in the house (as you may be lucky this renovation will never touch you):
    reporting from this source, “slate, copper and tile roofs can last more than 50 years. Wood shake roofs last about 30 years, while fiber cement shingles last about 25 years and asphalt shingle/composition roofs last about 20 years, the NAHB found”. During an informal chat, we got to hear a reasonable estimation for renovating a tile roof would be around 20000 euro.
    Thus you can start preventing a certain (potential) yearly amount for this maintenance as well.
  • Boiler
    We stepped in a rental contract when we bought our house (set up by previous owner and couldn’t be stopped without extra costs at that time), and up until now we have been with it. One of the reasons for not buying one ourselves is that the Netherlands are moving towards a gas-free future, and making the investment now seems a bit risky to us. Furthermore, in the renting we get maintenance and support in case of hiccups. We are with Kemkens, and pay about 33 euro per month.
    In general, you can expect a gas boiler to last between 10 and 15 years, and spread the relative costs (about 2000 euro) on that time span.
  • Frames
    Expectancy life for window frames and doors is highly variable, depending on the material and the maintenance performed to them. Anything from 10 to 30/40 years can be reasonable, while the prices for substitution (basic plastic frames for a typical Dutch house with three floors) is about 20000 euro. You can account for this in your expenses as well.

Thus this summarizes in a nutshell the expenses you can expect to encounter when owning a house. Since this is exclusively meant to be an indicative estimation, we suggest you to go deeper into the different points and follow the provided links to get a narrower estimation.

Might you have questions or comments, do not hesitate to reach out to me. Also if you like reading this sort of information, show some love! Like, comment or share…Sharing is caring and that’s a way to support me to keep writing!

Doei,
Marta

Useful words

(de) Hypotheek – mortgage
huren – to rent
kopen – to buy
(de) heffing / (de) belasting – tax
(de) ketel – kettle/boiler

Useful links

  • Website of the government about water system taxes (link)
  • Website of Eindhoven municipality about taxes (link)

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