Expat tax schemes burden the housing market

House sales Eindhoven
Photo credit: Studio040

A scheme under which ex-pats do not have to pay tax on 30 per cent of their income for the first five years that they live in the Netherlands is mounting further pressure on the housing market. This is evident from research by the TV programme ‘Een Vandaag’.

The scheme

This scheme, also called the 30 per cent ruling, stipulates that people who, for example, have a certain master’s degree from a university, do not have to pay tax on 30 per cent of their income for the first five years. Expats regularly use this advantage to outbid on a home, sees real estate agent Debbie Mels. And that makes the chances for ‘locals’ to obtain a home on the Eindhoven housing market even worse, according to the research.


The arrangement is often a topic of discussion. The FNV trade union previously spoke out in favour of abolition. Former Eindhoven mayor John Jorritsma argued in favour of retaining the scheme.


The TV program spoke to Eindhoven real estate agent Debbie Mels, who specifically focuses her office on the target group of expats. Many thousands of knowledge workers work in Southeast Brabant, often at one of the hundreds of technology companies. They are often dual-income couples who both earn a good salary in that sector. Due to a special arrangement for international employees with certain expertise, these expats often have more to spend.

Source: Studio040

Translated by: Seetha

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