Sharp drop in building permits for own homes

  • 10 percent fewer building permits for dwellings
  • Many fewer permits for own homes, more for rented homes
  • Large differences between provinces
  • 4 percent fall in completed homes

According to figures released today by Statistics Netherlands, Dutch municipalities issued building permits for 32 thousand dwellings in the first half of 2009. This is nearly 10 percent down on the same period last year, and the lowest number since the first half of 2004. The total value of these dwellings amounts to nearly 4.5 billion euro, also 10 percent less than twelve months previously.

The number of permits granted for the construction of owner-occupied dwellings fell sharply, by nearly 18 percent to 21 thousand dwellings. This is the lowest number since the first half of 2002.

In the same period the number of homes in the rental sector for which a building permit was issued rose by nearly 14 percent to nearly 11 thousand dwellings. The increase in the rental sector thus offsets the sharp decrease in the owner-occupied sector, where demand has declined considerably as a result of the recession.

There are large differences between the provinces. In Drenthe the number of permits issued fell by relatively most. The number of homes for which a permit was issued halved in this province. In Flevoland on the other hand developers were granted permission to build 37 percent more homes in the first half of 2009 than twelve months previously.

Some 27 thousand new homes were completed in the first half of 2009. This is nearly 4 percent down on the same period last year. The decrease was caused by a fall in the number of completed homes for owner-occupiers of nearly 7 percent. This decrease was compensated by a slight increase in the number of rental sector homes completed of just over 3 percent.