Coronavirus crisis pushed demand for holiday homes

Due to the coronavirus crisis, the demand for holiday homes in Zeeland, Friesland and Drenthe increased remarkably, Financieele Dagblad reports after speaking to realtors in the recreational home market. Especially homes in the higher segment, with a more room and a garden, are selling well, the newspaper reported on Monday.

"We see an explosive growth in the demand for holiday homes," Tom van den Brink of Fairs Consult, which organizes second home fairs in Netherlands and Belgium, said to FD. "Buyers indicate that the world has changed enormously in a few months and they want to enjoy it now. They are looking for a little more space, a little more ground. Demand is therefore high in Friesland and Belgium, but also Drenthe, which always lagged behind the market. You can also see it in France: houses that were for sale for years are now being sold for the asking price."

He attributes the increase partly to catch-up buys for the months of March and April, when the sale of holiday homes came to a near complete halt. 

The increased demand is pushing prices a bit, Van den Brink said. Homes in the higher segment, such as houses on the water in Friesland and Zeeland that cost around 500 thousand euros, are selling well. "These are people from the Randstad who are looking for space, peace and safety."

Antoine Kraneveld of, an online marketplace offering some 2,500 holiday homes for sale, also noticed an enormous increase in the demand for detached vacation homes with gardens. "It is amazing how easily tons are still spent on vacation homes. We expected that with the corona in the air, everyone would sit on their wallets for a while. That did not happen." 

One thing the coronavirus did change, is the nature of the demand, Kraneveld said. "In the past, 80 percent or more of all trade was purely for the return, so for the rental. Now you see that the buyers want to go to the house themselves. It has become a combination of efficiency and personal use. Then it makes sense that the transaction value increases. We in the market always say: sentiment costs return."