Read all about selling here - Makelaar in Amsterdam

Read all about selling here

Selling a home is not something you do every day. There are many things that need to be applied. Realtor in Amsterdam is a full-service brokerage and will take virtually everything off your hands. But, of course, you want to know what’s involved.
In this article, you can find a lot of information that are important when selling your home. In Amsterdam, it is customary for the purchase contract to be drawn up by the notary. The role of the notary is also explained.

If you are selling your home, you will recognize many difficult terms from the time you bought your home. But just in case you are no longer sure, we will explain what these terms mean. On the page where the difficult term appears. And at the end, a glossary of terms.

Below is an overview of all the topics covered in this article.
Questions? If so, please contact us. You can call 020-84 55 878, or email info@makelaarinamsterdam.nl
We are happy to share your knowledge with you.

Why should I read this article?
I found a buyer, now what?
How do I get a sales contract?
Through a broker or other advisor
Doing it yourself?
Our best option :the notary
Why a purchase contract through the notary?
All information,better arrangements
Certainty about rights and obligations
Protection for financial hardship
Detect and solve problems in time
Why is the purchase contract so important?
What does a purchase contract actually say?
What should I tell the buyer about the house?
Not ownership, but ground lease
Security deposit
Bank guarantee
What is included and what is not?
Onerous provisions
What are the resolutive conditions?
Reserved funding
National Mortgage Guarantee Reservation
Housing permit reservation
Building inspection reservation
Change of residence
What exactly about the reflection period?
What if the buyer does not use the cooling-off period?
How does the reflection period work?
What about hidden defects?
Do I really have to mention all the flaws?
And what obligations does the buyer have?
I inherited a house. So what about sales?
How do I know for sure if I inherited the house?
What are the risks to heirs?
How do I determine the value of the property?
I have already paid off my mortgage.
Chances are I’ll have residual debt. Now what?
Does it matter if I have a mortgage with NHG?
What if the sale does not go through?
The buyer exercises his cooling-off period.
The buyer invokes resolutive conditions.
The buyer remains in default
Stick by the buyer
What can I do if the buyer defaults?
What does the letter say?
Record everything well!
Why do I actually need to go to the notary?
Financial spider in the web
But surely such a deed is already ready-made?
So what should the notary/broker examine?
Preventing Problems
As a seller, do I also have to pay fees?
Who chooses the notary?
What does a notary cost?
When do I have to pay?
Glossary

Why should I read this article?

When you sell your home, you will have to deal with many things
that will seem familiar to you. After all, you have already experienced them or heard about them when you bought your home. You may even think you already know everything you should know.

But you are now in a different position. You are vendor. And then also in a true buyer’s market. Where homes yield less and buyers often drop out at the last minute.

How do you ensure that the sale of your home goes as smoothly as possible? What are your rights and obligations as a seller? What about if you might have a residual debt? All these questions, and many more, are answered in this booklet.

I found a buyer, now what?

Have you found a buyer and agreed on the price? Then you must agree on the transfer and the conditions that must be met. You must put those agreements in writing in the purchase contract. Thus, verbal agreements do not apply.

How do I get a sales contract?

Through a broker or other advisor

Often, outside Amsterdam, the contract of sale is drawn up by the real estate agent or other advisor involved in the purchase. Mostly because this is part of the standard service. But it is not mandatory. Moreover, it makes sense to be involved from the beginning yourself. In fact, it happens all too often that buyers and sellers sign off on a purchase contract when they don’t even know exactly what it contains. And it is a very large amount of money, after all. Do you have no idea yourself what to look for? If so, ask the notary for advice before you sign the purchase contract. That way you can be sure that everything is in there.

Doing it yourself?

You can also draw up a purchase contract yourself, with the buyer, of course. This seems like a good idea if you want to save costs. There are also plenty of examples online. But those are general examples. As a result, there is a chance that you will forget important (resolutive) conditions and agreements. And then you can’t go back.

Doing DIY with the purchase contract could therefore turn out to be much more expensive than you thought. After all, we are not talking about a few tens or a few hundred euros.

Our best option: the notary

It is best to have the purchase contract drawn up by the notary. This is because the notary specializes in the legal side of the sale. He is also independent and impartial. He will therefore keep you and the buyer well informed, so you both know exactly where you stand.

Why a purchase contract through the notary?

A trouble-free transfer begins with a good sales contract. It is a legal document, which requires special knowledge. The notary, where you need to go anyway, has that special knowledge.

All information, better arrangements

The notary public is independent and impartial. Therefore, he makes sure that both you and the buyer have enough legal information. You therefore know exactly what you are agreeing on before you sign the contract. This prevents you from forgetting to take care of something important. Like resolutive conditions or agreements about things like soil contamination.

Certainty about rights and obligations

The notary can also advise you on what to do if the buyer defaults. And vice versa, of course. It is important to agree in the purchase contract what your rights (and obligations) are in that case. For example, that the buyer must pay a penalty if the transfer does not go through on the scheduled date due to his actions. And what you need to do to claim that fine.

Protection for financial hardship

When the notary draws up the purchase contract, he can also register it with the Land Registry right away. This prevents you from jeopardizing the transfer if you have financial problems. For example, if you are in debt or in danger of bankruptcy. For that matter, debt does not even have to involve large sums of money. In fact, even a small late payment from a mail order company can cause your home to be repossessed. And then you can no longer transfer the property, which may put you in further trouble.

However, the transfer must take place within six months of enrollment. Failing that, this protection will expire.

Detect and solve problems in time

If you have the purchase contract drawn up by the notary, or you
at least get advice from the notary, he can investigate before signing the purchase contract to see if there might be any problems. For example, if the house was not properly assigned to you after a divorce or death, if you have a residual debt, or if there may be soil contamination. If the notary does not find this out until the transfer, he still has to work to solve these problems. That costs extra time and money. And if the transfer ultimately cannot go through at all, you may also have to pay a 10 percent penalty to the buyer!

Why is the sales contract so important?

Of course, everything in the sales process matters. But the purchase contract is perhaps the most important. This is because the purchase contract contains the agreements you make with the buyer. Thus, the basis for transferring ownership of the property. So if you forget to put something in the contract or it’s not in there quite right, there could be major consequences. Because once signed, stays signed.

What does a sales contract actually say?

The purchase contract will, of course, tell you who you are selling the house to, what the buyer must pay and when the house will be transferred. Or what is going on with the home or
The land on which the property stands. What else is in it depends on the home and your arrangements with the buyer. For example, agreements on resolutive conditions or a deposit.

What should I tell the buyer about the house?

As a seller, you have a duty of disclosure. You should tell the buyer everything about things that could affect the value of the house or get in the way of a future sale. Then it’s not just about the known (hidden) defects. But also to burdens and restrictions, easements or qualitative obligations.

You should make arrangements with the buyer about this. You record those agreements in the purchase contract. If the buyer later finds out that you withheld things or lied about something, he can demand damages or sometimes even reverse the sale. So make sure you always keep the buyer well informed. Also, or especially, about things you would rather not tell or that are not immediately visible.

By the way, the buyer does not need to hear everything from you. But be clear. For example, agree on what the buyer needs to find out for himself.

Below are some of the most common “snags.

Not ownership, but ground lease

Is there a ground lease? Then you must indicate how much
The annual canon is and until when the leasehold right runs. If the canon is redeemed, then of course let us know until when.

You must also clearly indicate whether it is a private ground lease. If so, it may in fact be difficult for the buyer to get a mortgage loan. Even if you do have a mortgage loan. The requirements may have changed by now.

Security deposit

When you bought your home, you probably had to pay a security deposit. Of course, you also ask the buyer for a deposit. It is usually 10 percent of the purchase price. If the buyer later fails to fulfill his obligations, the deposit can be used to pay a penalty. That is also usually 10 percent of the purchase price.

Bank guarantee

Not everyone has 10 percent of the purchase price lying around for
a security deposit. Therefore, a buyer can also provide a bank guarantee. The bank then guarantees that this 10 percent will be paid if needed.

What is included and what is not?

With the buyer, you should make proper arrangements about what belongs to the home and what does not. Usually, anything that is stuck and can only be loosened with considerable damage is included in the selling price. In addition, anything that really belongs to the home, even if it can be detached without damage, is included in the price.

Which items are included is not always clear. To avoid problems, it is wise for you to make a list of the things you are taking and leaving behind. You can then also agree whether the buyer has to pay extra for certain things or whether they are included in the sale price.

Onerous provisions

Common onerous provisions are:

– Easements
Is there an easement? For example, the right of way? Then, of course, you should inform the buyer about it. If you don’t, he can demand that you undo the easement. If that is not feasible, he can claim damages or perhaps still abandon the purchase.

– Qualitative obligations
Are there any obligations other than easements that also automatically go with the land or house? Of course, you must also inform the buyer about this.

– Soil contamination
If it is possible that the soil under your home or yard has been contaminated, it is important to make practical and legal arrangements. For example, about soil testing and about an arrangement that divides the (financial) risks between you and the buyer. The notary can advise you on this.

What are the resolutive conditions?

It is often thought that resolutive conditions only apply to a buyer. It doesn’t. As a seller, you can also set resolutive conditions. And as a seller, you don’t have to accept all of the buyer’s resolutive conditions either.

Of course, it depends on the situation which resolutive conditions are useful for you (and the buyer). But below are the most common resolutive conditions.

Reserved funding

This resolutive condition will probably be familiar to you, as it appears in almost every purchase contract. It is more or less a standard text with the date by which the mortgage loan must be completed and the amount involved. It may also stipulate that it will not go through if the buyer has to pay more than a certain amount in mortgage charges, if the interest rate is too high or if he fails to get a specific mortgage.

National Mortgage Guarantee Reservation

Is the buyer planning to take out a mortgage with National Mortgage Guarantee (NHG)? Then he usually also wants to include a resolutive condition about this in the purchase contract, just in case things don’t work out.

Housing permit reservation

Is a housing permit required? The buyer then probably wants to agree that the sale will not go through if he does not get a permit.

Building inspection reservation

Especially with an older home, the buyer may indicate that the purchase depends on the results of a structural inspection. Of course, to get ahead of the buyer, you can have a building technical inspection done yourself. At least then you also know where you stand. Do make sure you clearly agree with
the buyer what, if any, consequences the results of the inspection may have. For example, agree on when the buyer may waive the purchase and when they may not.

Change of residence

If the buyer plans to remodel your home or run a business from home, he may need to seek permission from the municipality. If he does not get that permission, he will probably want to abandon the purchase. Of course, you decide whether you agree to this resolutive condition.

What exactly about the reflection period?

By law, the buyer has a three-day cooling-off period. During this reflection period, he may waive the purchase. This is allowed without reason and without consequences. You can also agree on a longer reflection period. You must then put that in the purchase contract. For you as the seller, by law, there is no cooling-off period. However, you may agree with the buyer that you also have time for reflection. You must also document this in the purchase contract.

What if the buyer does not use the cooling-off period?

If the buyer does not use his reflection period or is late, he is obliged to buy the house. Unless, of course, he can invoke one of the resolutive conditions.

How does the reflection period work?

The cooling-off period begins on the day the buyer receives a copy of the signed purchase contract. The cooling-off period lasts for three full days, with a minimum of two working days. For example, if he gets the contract on Thursday, then the reflection period starts on Friday morning at 0 a.m. and runs until Monday evening at midnight.

When the notary draws up the purchase contract for you, he also records exactly when the cooling-off period begins. Therefore, there can be no misunderstanding between you and the buyer.

What about hidden defects?

When you sell your home, it must be able to be used normally. If there are (hidden) defects, the buyer may not be able to use the home normally. In that case, he can recover damages from you. Except, of course, if he is for
the transfer knows what defects exist and has made arrangements with you about them.

Do I really have to mention all the flaws?

As a seller, you have a duty of disclosure. Thus, you are required to let the buyer know if your home has defects and what they are. If these are obvious defects that the buyer himself can see immediately, then the buyer has his own responsibility. But even then it is wise to mention the defects as well.

And what obligations does the buyer have?

The buyer himself has a duty to investigate. For example, he must check with the municipality whether the house may be remodeled. And the buyer is expected to notice obvious defects himself and make arrangements for them.

I inherited a house. So what about sales?

If a house is part of an estate, selling it is often not so simple. After all, who actually has a right to the house? What is the house worth? What about inheritance tax?

How do I know for sure if I inherited the house?

You can inherit a house only if you are an heir of the deceased owner of the house or if a will states that the owner bequeaths the house to you. Whether you are an heir is stated in a will or by law. You can check with the Central Register of Wills to see if there is a will. You can read how to do that at www.notaris.nl/centraal-testamentenregister. If there is no will, the law applies. www.notaris.nl lists who can be an heir under the law.

What are the risks to heirs?

Inheriting a house is not without risks for an heir. At
current times, homes are hard to sell. Especially if there is a high mortgage on the house – “the house is under water” – the costs keep rising during the period the house is for sale. As an heir, you can unknowingly accept an estate purely by conduct. For example, if you vacate the home (in part) and take financially valuable items back to your own home, that can be considered a pure act of acceptance. This pure acceptance makes you liable with your own assets for debts of the estate. Thus, in the case of an unsaleable house with a high mortgage, you can be held personally liable for that residual debt. As an heir, you can avoid this by accepting the estate beneficently. So seek advice on this from your notary in good time before settling. It can inform you of the risks and ways to avoid those risks.

How do I determine the value of the property?

If you want to sell the house, you will often have the market value appraised first.

But for inheritance tax purposes, you don’t need an appraisal. This is because then you must use the previous year’s WOZ value.
Do you think the WOZ value is too high? Then apply for a new WOZ assessment from the municipality where the house is located. After receiving the decision, you have six weeks to object.

Are there more heirs and you want to know the value to determine the amount of your inheritance? Then you and the other heirs must decide how the value will be determined. Sometimes the will says how to do this. So then you have no choice. However, you should always assume the value at the time of death.

Want to know more about this topic? If so, please contact us.

I have already paid off my mortgage.

It is nice if you no longer have to repay a mortgage loan when you sell. But it does matter if you have also had your mortgage cancelled at the Land Registry. Because only then will your home be mortgage-free. And only if your home is mortgage-free can the transfer proceed. In fact, a buyer will demand that the house be delivered mortgage-free.

Chances are I’ll have residual debt. Now what?

Does your home, when sold, not yield enough to pay off mortgage debt? Then it is good to look for a solution in time. This is because if you have a residual debt, your mortgage cannot be cancelled without the bank’s cooperation.

And then you cannot transfer the property.

The residual debt may be able to be converted into a personal loan with the same bank. However, you often have to repay that loan on an accelerated basis. The loan is also registered with the Bureau of Credit Registration (BKR). Or perhaps the debt can be included in a mortgage for your new home. The interest for that portion of the mortgage is then not deductible.

Either way, it is a good idea to use your notary for this as well. Who can tell you exactly what needs to be done to get the mortgage off the house. Do this on time, though. Because if the transfer cannot go through at all, you may also have to pay a 10 percent penalty!

Does it matter if I have a mortgage with NHG?

Are you forced to sell your home and worried that you may have a residual debt? And do you have a mortgage with NHG? If so, you may be in luck. If you meet certain conditions, the NHG will later forgive your residual debt. Check www.nhg.nl to see what conditions are.

What if the sale does not go through?

There are three main reasons why the sale does not go through. The buyer uses his cooling-off period, or the resolutive conditions in the purchase contract, or he defaults.

The buyer uses his cooling-off period

During the cooling-off period, the buyer may abandon the purchase without reason.

Buyer invokes resolutive conditions

The resolutive conditions can be about anything. That depends on what you agree in the purchase contract with the buyer. But whatever resolutive conditions you agree to, at least make sure there is a deadline attached. For example, one month to complete the financing. And if after that month the buyer runs into financial problems that prevent him from buying the house? Then, as annoying as it is, that is not your problem.

The buyer remains in default

Of course, it is annoying if the buyer uses his cooling-off period or the resolutive conditions. But it is allowed.

What the buyer may not do is default. He does this, for example, if the delivery (transfer) of the property cannot go ahead due to his actions. Because he does not pay the purchase price. Or because he just doesn’t show up when the deed of delivery needs to be signed. Fortunately, you are often then entitled to compensation. Because if the buyer defaults (demonstrably!), then he must pay you a penalty. At least, if you agreed to that in the purchase contract.

Stick by the buyer

Usually the purchase contract states that the buyer must pay a deposit or provide a bank guarantee. Almost always it is 10 percent of the purchase price. This does not always go well, by the way. Therefore, check with the notary if the buyer has provided a deposit or bank guarantee in time.

If the buyer uses their cooling-off period or the resolutive conditions, they simply get their money back (or the bank guarantee is terminated). If he defaults, he often has to pay a fine. That fine is usually as big

as the amount of the security deposit. So the buyer loses his money. If he has not paid a deposit or provided a bank guarantee, you can force him to still pay.

What can I do if the buyer defaults?

Suppose the buyer has not paid the purchase price or deposit by the agreed date. If so, you must formally “declare” him in default. The contract of sale states what agreements
you have made about this. It often says that you must send the buyer a letter reminding them that they are in default. He is then usually given another period of time (say, eight days) to still fulfill his obligations. If he does not, you can usually claim the fine.

What does the letter say?

In the letter, you are required to mention several things. Ask your notary in advance if your notice of default is accurate. Otherwise, there is a chance that he may not be able to pay the fine to you.

Record everything well!

Always make sure you record everything well and make copies of everything. This is because the notary must assess whether the buyer has truly defaulted. If so, he will make sure you are paid the fine.

Why do I actually need to go to the notary?

In the Netherlands, and almost everywhere in Europe, the notary regulates all the legal matters surrounding the transfer. He is also the only one allowed to do so. As a result, all parties know for sure where they stand. In other countries, such as America, they don’t know a notary. There, buyers have to buy expensive insurance to deal with any problems afterwards. There is also a lot of housing fraud there. For example, selling a property while the owner knows of nothing!

There are fortunately no such problems in the Netherlands. The notary is independent and impartial and therefore looks at your interests as well as those of the buyer. He also does all kinds of research. To your background and that of the buyer. If something is not right and could cause problems, he immediately slams on the brakes. And usually he makes sure that the problems are solved as quickly as possible.

So the notary does a lot for you. But he does most of it behind the scenes, so all you have to do is sign.

Financial spider in the web

The notary monitors the financial side of the transfer. For example, he makes sure the bank and the seller get their money. This, of course, involves crossing right over. Thus, the property does not become the property of the buyer until it is certain that the purchase price has been paid and nothing more can go wrong.

But surely such a deed is already ready-made?

A deed is always customized, because every situation is different. But certain pieces of text are the same or at least very similar. It should. This is because it is important that the deeds contain descriptions and terms that are legally valid. It is easier to control that if everything is the same as much as possible.

So what should the notary examine?

The notary has to do dozens of examinations before the property can be transferred. Below is a summary.

Among other things, the notary checks at the Land Registry that all the details of the property are correct. In addition, he controls
Whether there are mortgages or encumbrances on the house. If so, the transfer may not be possible. He will then look for a solution.

Furthermore, he checks, for example, whether you have been divorced between the purchase and sale of your home. Indeed, in that case, your ex-partner may still be entitled to the property. Also checks
he whether there are no legal obstacles. This could include a right of first refusal from the municipality or a remediation order.

Preventing Problems

It often happens that a transfer is delayed, or not done at all, because of last-minute problems. The notary then still has to work to solve those problems. That costs extra money. And a lot of time. And the buyer does not always feel like waiting for those problems to be solved.

Some common problems include:

  • een echtscheiding die niet goed is afgewikkeld, waardoor
    de handtekening van de ex-partner nodig is
  • het huis was onderdeel van de gemeenschap van goederen,
    één van de echtgenoten is inmiddels overleden en het huis is nooit officieel toebedeeld aan de verkoper (de overblijvende echtgenoot)
  • het huis is onderdeel van een nalatenschap (wat op zich
    al lastig is) en de erfgenaam die het huis wil verkopen mag dat helemaal niet doen
  • de gemeente heeft een voorkeursrecht
  • de kantonrechter moet een machtiging afgeven voor
    de verkoop van het huis
  • er zijn problemen met het huis of de grond
    Al deze problemen komen veel vaker voor dan u denkt. Gelukkig kan de notaris ze meestal oplossen, maar dan moet hij daarvoor wel de tijd krijgen.Moet ik als verkoper ook kosten betalen?
    Misschien weet u helemaal niet dat u als verkoper vaak ook kosten moet betalen. Maar eigenlijk is het best logisch. De koper betaalt namelijk alleen de kosten die hij maakt voor de aankoop van uw woning. Zijn er kosten voor de verkoop van uw woning, dan moet u die meestal zelf betalen. Denk aan de kosten voor het doorhalen van uw hypotheek of het aflossen van een krediet. Of kosten die u moet maken voor het oplossen van problemen, bijvoorbeeld bij echtscheiding of een overlijden.
    Wie kiest de notaris?

With the buyer, you agree on who chooses the notary. Usually the buyer determines. But for you, it may be convenient to choose the notary yourself. In fact, you can then, before the transfer, take care of many things. Especially if your situation is a bit trickier, this can be a godsend. For example, in the event of a death, a divorce, or if there is an attachment. If you want to choose the notary yourself, you must agree with the buyer in advance.

What does a notary cost?

You pay the notary for his work. Some work is standard, some is not. There are no set rates, so it may be wise to ask about costs in advance. If the notary has to solve many problems, the cost may be higher than he first indicated. Especially if he can’t get started until the last minute. This is another reason why it is wise to have the purchase contract made by the notary. Then you can be sure you won’t have any surprises (financial or otherwise) later.

When do I have to pay?

The notary’s bill will tell you what amounts you will receive and what amounts you must pay. On the plus side, for example, is the purchase price. On the minus side, the cost of getting your mortgage through.

The final amount on the note can be negative or positive. If the final amount is negative for you, i.e. you have to pay extra, then you must transfer the amount to the notary’s account before the transfer. If the final amount is positive for you, for example with a substantial surplus value, you will receive the amount from the notary after the registration of the delivery deed at the Land Registry. Unless there still appear to be serious problems with you as the seller. For example, if you go bankrupt just on the day of the transfer.

Begrippenlijst

Copy
An official copy

Bank guarantee
If you get a guarantee from the bank that a certain amount will be paid

Reflection period
The time given to the buyer to abandon the purchase without reason

Beneficial acceptance
If you accept the inheritance under a condition of estate planning. As a result, you are not liable with your own assets for debts of the deceased.

Foreclosing on a house
This gives another party the right to sell the house if a debt is not paid

Onerous provisions
Provisions on matters that may affect housing or sales

Canon
The annual ‘rent’ for using someone else’s land

Courtage
Amount you should pay the broker for his services

Inheritance tax
Taxes you pay on your inheritance

Inheritance
Your share of the inheritance

Easements
If someone is allowed to use your land or a facility on your home

Heir
Someone who is entitled to an inheritance or part of an inheritance according to law or a will

Leasehold
If the buyer has the right to use the house and land, while another person remains the owner

Leasehold
The right to use a piece of land without owning it

Housing Permit
Permit from a municipality to live in a home

Duty to inform
Your duty to inform the buyer about the condition of the home and anything that may affect his living enjoyment

Default
If someone fails to fulfill their obligations

Purchase Contract
This contains all the agreements between buyer and seller regarding the purchase of a property

Qualitative obligations
Agreements with others about what not to do or should do

Charges and restrictions
Issues that can negatively affect living in or owning a home

Legate
If someone leaves you certain assets. This must be recorded in a will

Delivery deed
The deed in which the notary regulates the transfer of the property

Inheritance
All possessions and debts left by a deceased person

Duty to investigate
The buyer’s duty to investigate the condition of the home and anything that might affect his living enjoyment

Conditions precedent
Official reasons why someone does not have to keep an appointment made

Transfer
If the property changes hands. This is also called the delivery

Private leasehold
If the piece of land being used belongs to a private individual and not to the municipality

Right of way
The right to cross someone else’s land without hindrance

Remediation Decision
An official statement stating how bad the contamination of soil is and what should be done about it

Testament
A deed drawn up by a notary public stating what should happen to an estate

Hidden flaws
Defects that are not immediately visible

Preferential right municipality
If you must first offer land for sale to the municipality

Security deposit
An amount used as collateral

Pure acceptance
If you accept your inheritance without reservation. You are then responsible for settling the estate and liable for the assets as well as (also with your private assets) for all debts.

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