Expat Magazine

Moving on in the Netherlands... Putting Your House on the Market

By Clogsandtulips @clogsandtulips
Moving on in the Netherlands... putting your house on the market Moving on in the Netherlands... putting your house on the market Moving on in the Netherlands... putting your house on the marketLast week, we talked about makelaars (realtors) in the Netherlands. To recap, you can have up to two: a verkopende makelaar (selling realtor) and an aankoopmakelaaar (buying realtor). You can also opt to sell the house yourself.
As we went with a verkopende makelaar, that's the story I'm going to stick to.
Once you've decided on a makelaar, he or she will come to your home to discuss a selling price and their percentage. The makelaar will talk to you about what you want to include in your brochure (floor plans, photos, meaurements, features, etc) and you will need to hand over any information on the house you have so they can make copies to have on file.
The next steps are to take measurements and photos of the house. Your makelaar will do all necessary write-ups. All photos and information on your home will be placed in a brochure for your home to be given to potential buyers and visitors as well as on the realty site Funda.
After that, it's a waiting game. Especially in today's market. For us, we put our apartment on the market in late November and didn't get our first viewing until March.
You can also participate in open days. You'll need to sign up with your makelaar, after which, you'll get a poster advertising the open day to place in your window. You will be expected to be home the day of and let people in to look at your home.
Some makelaars will include this in their percentage cut or you can pay per open day - the choice is yours. We participated in one and had absolutely no one show up.... talk about disheartening.
As soon as you get a bite, the makelaar will be in touch with you to let you know when the viewing has been scheduled. You will not be able to be present during the viewing. For us, this meant taking the dog and finding a place to hang out for about an hour. Visits usually don't take longer than 30 minutes, but you want to be sure that you're not walking in on your makelaar and viewers mid-visit.
You'll want to make sure that your home is in tip-top shape before the viewing. Make sure your home is clean and uncluttered. Even the littlest thing can make a huge impression on a potential buyer (either positively or negatively).
To prepare our apartment for viewings, we got a new area rug for the living room that goes better with our color scheme, re-painted the walls and ceiling in the hallway, cleaned till the apartment was spic-and-span, bought fresh flowers to decorate our kitchen table, and hid unnecessary clutter in closets and drawers (and even the clothes dryer!).
Unfortunately, this is the worst time to be selling. Sellers all over are having trouble getting buyers and viewers. We have a friend who's gorgeous house in Bilthoven has been on the market for 5 months and he has had no viewings whatsoever. A couple we know has had their home on the market for two years. We also know people who, after a year or so, took their houses off the market altogether (note: makelaars operate under the "no cure, no pay" policy).
Just keep getting your Funda link out there, pass information along to friends and ask them to pass the info along to their network. But always have a back-up plan in case things don't pan out.
Photo: David Stanley, Flickr

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