What is an Anti-speculation clause?

Found a house with an Anti-speculation clause? Before you make an offer you better read that!

House prices in the Netherlands have risen sharply in recent years. Therefore the government is making every effort to ensure that sufficient affordable homes are built and that these homes remain affordable. An important means of achieving this is the anti-speculation clause.

What is an anti-speculation clause?

The Anti-speculation clause is a clause in a purchase contract that obliges the buyer to live in the purchased property for several years before the buyer may resell the property. It is a perpetual clause, so when the house is sold, the effect of the clause is transferred to the new buyer.

The clause is aimed at keeping the homes accessible to the target group and preventing speculation in the first years of occupancy. The condition is stated in the purchase contract that the house may not be sold during a certain period without permission from the municipality. If permission for sale is given, the maximum sale price is determined on the basis of a calculation, whereby the original purchase price is indexed and plus demonstrable additional costs. If it is found after the sale that the home has been sold at a higher price, the selling party will be exposed to get a fine.

What is the purpose of the Anti-speculation clause?


The anti-speculation clause has been used in the past for two reasons. On the one hand to preserve the houses for the own population. On the other hand, to prevent the selling price of the house from increasing significantly in a few years. That is why contracts stipulate, among other things, that a prospective buyer must have a bond with the municipality, that the municipality determines the new buyer and that the municipality determines the selling price on the basis of fixed calculation rules.

On the basis of case law, it is no longer permitted to require a prospective buyer to have a bond with the municipality or to determine the new buyer. The only effect of the clause that the municipality sets prior to the sale is the price.

By determining the selling price to be used as a municipality, it is prevented that the value of the house becomes so high due to market forces and scarcity that the selling price for a household belonging to the original target group can no longer be paid.


For how long does the Anti-speculation clause apply?


In the past, a term of 10 or 12 years was used. Today, the legally permitted term is 5 years. A term of five years is therefore adhered to in the new contracts.


What is the penalty clause on infringing the Anti-speculation clause?


If the house is sold above the selling price determined by the municipality, then the seller must transfer part of the profit to the municipality, used as a penalty measure. In this way, you hope as a municipality to stimulate that the selling party adheres to the price set by the municipality. 

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