Building permits at historic low

  • Number of building permits for new houses 30 percent down
  • Housing corporations show largest decline
  • Value residential renovation permits higher

In 2013, more than 26 thousand building permits for new houses were granted, a decline by 30 percent relative to 2012. The decline over the last quarter was less substantial. Figures released by Statistics Netherlands show that, since the onset of the economic crisis in 2008, the number of residential building permits has fallen by 70 percent to the lowest level since 1953.

With a reduction by 43 percent, housing corporations showed the largest decline in 2013 relative to 2012. The reduction is marginally higher for tenant-occupied dwellings than for owner-occupied dwellings. Compared to 2008, the reduction is much higher for owner-occupied dwellings than for tenant-occupied dwellings: 76 versus 55 percent.

The number of residential renovation permits remained stable in 2013. Altogether, 8.6 thousand permits were issued for renovations exceeding a building sum of 50 thousand euros. The building costs involved grew by 8 percent to 2.75 billion euros.

There are regional differences with respect to building permits granted for new houses. Proportionally, the most substantial reduction was recorded in the provinces of  Zeeland and Friesland with 55 percent and 63 percent respectively. In the province of Utrecht, the number of building permits for new houses increased by 18 percent.