The Dutch housing crisis continues to worsen: according to figures published by ABF Research, in 2023 the Netherlands is short approximately 390.000 homes – a sharp increase compared to last year’s figure of 315.000. 

Dutch housing shortage rises from 315.000 to 390.000

It’s no secret that the Netherlands faces a shortage of housing, leading to high prices and an exceedingly competitive market. While the severity of the situation was already known, figures shared by ABF Research reveal precisely how tight the Dutch housing market is. 

The research – which was commissioned by the Dutch government – involved ABF looking into population projections and planned construction projects in order to determine how many residential properties the country needs. In the report, the Delft-based research agency concluded that the Netherlands is short 390.000 homes in 2023. Last year, this figure was significantly lower, at “just” 315.000. 

The Netherlands unable to accommodate rising population

According to ABF Research, this sharp increase is due to a recent rise in the number of households and families in the Netherlands, partly as a result of rising immigration in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the high number of international students at Dutch universities.

The issue is further exacerbated by the fact that the number of people per household is falling faster than initially expected. Furthermore, the country doesn’t have enough places in nursing homes, meaning the elderly continue to live at home for longer.

Dutch Housing Minister says more homes must be built

In addition to calculating how many houses the Netherlands is missing, ABF reported that the national shortage won’t improve until at least 2028 – initial figures predicted this would happen from 2026. ABF also expects that the government’s target to build 900.000 new homes by 2030 will not be achieved. 

To make matters worse, ABF’s research states that the Netherlands will require an additional 981.000 homes by 2030 in order to accommodate all households and families – while at the same time, the rate of construction is set to fall over the coming years. As was explained by Housing Minister Hugo de Jonge earlier this year, this dip is largely due to high interest rates on mortgages, inflation and rising costs, climate policies, and a notable lack of land to build on. 

While the figures are certainly disappointing, in a statement De Jonge made it clear that they weren’t surprising: “The new figures show that the task – which was already considerable – is even greater. This is not unexpected, but it does underline the need to ensure that the number of new homes rises faster than the number of new people. We will have to make up for the housing shortage. And so we have to build more affordable houses with more speed and more direction.” 

Thumb: Rosanne de Vries via

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