The number of houses sold in Amsterdam at the beginning of this year suddenly plummeted. There were in the first quarter of this year 2490 homes sold, 21.3 percent less than in the last quarter of 2014. This is evidenced by the quarterly figures published this morning in the Amsterdam Hilton Hotel by NVM agents about sold homes. The decrease around Amsterdam was stronger than in the rest of the Netherlands, where selling with 16.9 percent came to an all-time low. The number of sold homes (terraced houses) in Amsterdam fell in the first quarter with more than 30 percent from the fourth quarter last year. Houses on a corner were sold 38 less than late last year. The number of sold detached houses fell even with 54.7 percent.
Sven Heinen, President of the Realtors Association Amsterdam (MVA), puts the figures into perspective. ‘ Compared to the figures of the last quarter of 2014 we see great differences. But that was also an exorbitant good quarter. Not only were then 3165 houses sold, incredible, but prices rose with more than six percent in one quarter. ‘
Of relapse you can talk only when the quarter-on-quarter comparison is made, which is always the case. ‘ But, ‘ stresses Heinen, ‘ compared with a year ago more homes were sold, 19.9 percent more. ‘ And: ‘ this is the best first quarter ever. ‘ ‘ The first quarter where sales come close a bit to that in the first quarter of this year, was the first quarter of 2007. 2244 homes were sold, still 246 houses less than this year. Only in the period before the credit crisis brokers quarter after quarter have sold this kind of numbers of sold homes. ‘ Talking of a relapse is only if the sales are compared with the end of the ‘ unprecedented strong year 2014 ‘.
There are some clear explanations for the fall back according to Heinen of sales compared to the situation at the end of last year. The important thing is that last year 100.000,- euro’s for a house could be donated tax free. That is why a part of the transactions that would have usually taken place in 2015, was done in 2014. Another phenomenon is that the Amsterdam housing market reacts more violently on changed circumstances than the rural market. In addition, the first quarter of the year is usually the weakest quarter.
At the brokers of NVM at the preparation of the presentation of the quarterly figures alarm bells went ringing. A researcher from the NVM, Frank Harleman, looked to the Amsterdam special figures, and noted that the offer in Amsterdam also stronger declines than in the rest of the Netherlands. He wondered whether enough new supply of homes on the market was the case. That turned out not to be the case.
In the first quarter this year were 2708 homes ‘ new ‘ offered for sale, against 3475 late last year, 22 percent less. The total number of houses that the was for sale also shrinks, by 5172 to 4485 homes. A shrinking market realizes a tighter market, causing prices not to fall, but tend to rise further.
A bad omen is that despite the reduced selling house prices still increased during the quarter by 0.9 percent, to 246 thousand euro for an average house for sale in the city. Compared with a year ago, house prices rose by an average of 7.2 percent. The average home prices remained virtually unchanged in the rest of Netherlands on 211.000 euro, 0.1 percent higher than the quarter before. Compared with a year ago, prices are slightly higher, 2.9 percent higher. The square meter price, 1957 euro, changed not at all during the quarter. Also rural homes for sale remained to stand longer, 123 days, 3.8 percent more than in the quarter before. The ‘ mood index ‘ shows that the conversion of the brokers with 18.8 percent during the quarter decreased compared to the last quarter of 2014.