CRECCHKI Evening Talk: Dutch and Hong Kong Real Estate Market Overview

Gemini Investment (HK) Limited Office - Room 3902, 39/F., Tower 1, Lippo Centre, 89 Queensway, Hong Kong
23 April 2018

We are delighted to present our brand new series of professional and networking event - "Evening Talk" to you, with Live Video Conference available for ALL Members and guests around the world! We'll invite both Onshore and Offshore real estate industry experts to explore housing markets in various regions.

  1. Overview of the Dutch Real Estate Market & Forecasts 2018 and 2019
  2. The Trend of Chinese Investors in the Dutch Real Estate Market
  3. Hong Kong Real Estate Market Outlook

Don't miss this opportunity to listen, learn, participate and network. Seats are limited to 25 only, so RSVP now! This event is open to CRECCHKI Members and guests. You are welcome to join us on Live Video Conference from anywhere!

CRECCHKI Evening Talk: Dutch and Hong Kong Real Estate Market Overview

Dutch and Hong Kong Real Estate Market Overview


  • Dr. Hans Mersmann, Member Board of Director Foundation Certification of Brokers, The Netherlands

  • Mr. Frank A.J. Straeter, Senior International Structured Finance,  Financial Engineering Executive, Paris, France

  • Mr. Nigel Smith, Managing Director, Colliers International Hong Kong

April 23, 2018 (Monday)

18:30 - 20:00
(Registration and Networking starts at 18:00)

Gemini Investment (HK) Limited
Room 3902, 39/F., Tower 1, Lippo Centre, 89 Queensway, Hong Kong

HK$100 for CRECCHKI Members  (Pay at door)

HK$250 for Non-members
(Non Member must pay in advance by crossed cheque or Electronic Transfer or Direct Debit for registration confirmation)
*Light refreshment and drinks available at site. CRECCHKI members will have priority for this exclusive event. Please RSVP quickly.

Luncheon will be conducted in English

Live video conference details will be shared in the event confirmation email.

About Speakers:

Dr. Hans Mersmann

Member Board of Director Foundation Certification of Brokers, The Netherlands

Hans Mersmann was director strategic and foreign affairs at the Foundation Home Ownership Guarantee Fund in the Netherlands. He left the company in 2011 due to retirement. From that date he intensified and continues his work at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. Developing an executive program Finance & Risk Management for Housing Associations of which he acts as program director. Next to that he set up and is responsible for a post-initial course for controllers: Certified Management Controlling. Besides he is secretary of the exam committee of the post master controllers course.

Hans Mersmann completed his study at the University of Amsterdam as Master of Economics, specialized in advanced price theory. He first worked as economist at the Centraal Planbureau (CPB, Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis). He then joined the Nederlandse Middenstands Bank (today ING Bank) as head of a research department, which offers advisory services mainly for internal use and for clients. Amongst the various documents he wrote, he produced a booklet about the building industry. He subsequently held different positions at the Netherlands Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment amongst head of a research department. In his first assignment at the Ministry he was closely involved with studies evaluating the economic effects of housing policies on the Dutch housing market. In his last period with the Ministry he was a specialist in fiscal and financial affairs related to homeownership and the social rental sector. He produced several studies with respect to the relation between housing costs in the social rental and owner-occupied sector in the Netherlands. In 2000 he joined the Foundation. 

Mr. Frank A.J. Straeter

Senior International Structured Finance,  Financial Engineering Executive, Paris, France

  • Specialties: (tax and non tax) Financial Engineering, Securitization, Asset Management

  • Asset Finance, Credit Risk, Structured Export & Project Finance, Acquisition Finance, Treasury & Derivatives

  • Real Estate (Finance), MRICS

  • Global Structured Finance Client Coverage, Debt Advisory

  • Economic Research, European (Financial) Regulations

Mr. Nigel Smith
Managing Director
Colliers International | Hong Kong

Nigel Smith, a property and real estate industry veteran with close to 30 years of experience, is the managing director for Colliers International Hong Kong; where he oversees the development and growth of the company and its people. Since his arrival, Colliers has reinforced its enterprising culture by improving its research capabilities, implementing relevant learning and development programmes, expanding the business and its service lines, and strengthening the Colliers’ brand.

Nigel is a thought leader and expert in designing, marketing, and leasing tall office buildings and mixed-use projects across Asia. He has extensive regional and local operations exposure in the industry and a reputable network, he has also previously built office agency businesses in other global real estate companies, and always aims to deliver client centric insights and solutions.

He has worked with over 100 Grade A projects including many ‘tall buildings’ such as Taipei 101, 2IFC, ICC Hong Kong, Ping An IFC Shenzhen, and China World Tower in Beijing. Nigel also shares knowledge on driving collaboration in the workplace and creating opportunities, and has become a voice in the workplace strategy and wellness movement.



Dutch Real Estate Market: Reasons to Invest

General Picture

As the Dutch economy shows a prosperous and continuous growth as of 2016 in line with that the real estate market is going on to compete with figures that were considered as "normal" before the financial crisis of 2008-2013. But even l dear to say to beat them as l conclude underneath.
The building sector is one of the fastest growing sectors in the Dutch economy with repeating prospects for 2018 and 2019. Even circumstances are better now as the housing market can be characterized by a growing shortage of affordable houses especially in the central region of the Netherlands which is called the Randstad. Four large cities are situated in that region Amsterdam, Utrecht, Rotterdam and The Hague. 

Figure 1: The Netherlands with 4 big cities

Production, Demand and Supply: 2018/19 Outlook

Today's production of newly built houses is far beyond what is needed to catch up the shortage of around 200.000 houses on a total number of 7 million houses. In order to get a housing balance between supply and demand yearly 70,000 rental and owner-occupied houses have to be build until 2020 while last year 60,000 houses are delivered.
ln the large cities like Amsterdam housing scarcity is more worse. For example modal incomes are in general no longer able to buy a house in accordance with their lending capacity. It looks like finding a house in London for less rich people. Higher house prices and higher rents attract investors making it popular to buy and let. Consequently this undermines the accessibilty for first time buyers and other owner-occupiers. As a result investors in large cities like Amsterdam are the big winners as demand prices boosted up in Amsterdam with 14% in January 2018 compared to January 2017 leading to an average house price of Euro 429.000 in 2017. Rotterdam and Utrecht performed in a similar way with a house price growth of 13% respectively 11,9%. Rents increased last year with 3% till 4% and are expected to follow the upward trend.
For all Dutch houses the average price is EUR 265.000 in 2017. Besides a shortage of houses and a well-performing economy a contributing factor too is the long-term interest rate which is still extremely low although some increase might be expected during 2018 and 2019. However such increase will not destroy the favorite outlook for the Dutch real estate market as both other factors will in my view push the sunny side of the housing market during the next coming years

Table: Price index existing owner-occupied houses
Source: Central Bureau of Statistics, the Netherlands


The Housing Act of 2016 states that housing associations in the Netherlands have to fulfill their tasks mainly in the social rental sector. Due to this policy housing associations are confronted with decisions what to do with their non-social rental part. Some already sold a number of that stock to national and/or international investors and a number of housing associations is thinking about to get rid of those houses. In totally housing associations posess 2,3 million houses of which roughly 10 percent belongs to the non-social part.
Foreign investors like Patrizia, Round Hill Capital and Asian investors already stepped in buying thousands of non-social houses. Others will follow and l expect that the return on investment is fair for private and institutional investors due to factors keeping return quite high such as a large shortage of rental houses in the mid-priced segment of the rental sector (EUR 700 – 1000 rent a month). So steady state upgoing rental prices are to expected.
But also the hotel and office market enjoyed strong demand from national and international investors. The Brexit offers new elements of real estate competition between the EU capital cities. For Amsterdam the settlement of the European Medicines Agency illustrates the serious efforts the city authority undertakes to promote and attract succesfully international well-know institutions coming to Amsterdam. So it looks obvious to conclude that demand for housing and office buildings is growing meanwhile accepting a decreasing supply of residential and commercial properties in the near future as locations are scarce and will remain scarce as l expect in the near and mid future. That will keep up prices on a high level. In addition Amsterdam is still becoming more and more popular among tourists all over the world. So hotel space remains scarce as the city authorities prohibit new hotel investments in the inner circle of the city. As an alternative investors are looking for quality properties outside the four big cities and even outside the Randstad. In a small country as the Netherlands one can imagine that it is quite easy to observe regional locations worthwhile to invest in.

Foreign Interest of Investors
Research among 130 international real estate investors was carried out by the European Association of non-listed institutional real estate investors named the Inrev.
From the 130 investors 40 percent has the intention to invest in Dutch real estate in 2016. As a result the Netherlands will climb up from an 8th place to a 4th place in the ranking of mostly wanted European real estate destinations. This trend is likely to continue because the Netherlands was one of the best performing countries in the European Union in 2017 and forecasts are showing the same optimistic economic direction.
Reasons for a booming international interest in Dutch real estate are (l) a growing economy, (ll) severe scarcity especially in the mid-priced section of the rental housing sector and (lll) real estate is still relatively low-priced compared to for example Germany and the UK. A   report of Mercer (2016) shows that the monthly rent for an apartment in Hong Kong is on average 6,800 US dollar, New York 5,100 US dollar, London 4,580 US dollar and Amsterdam 2,664 US dollar. So Amsterdam is by far the cheapest main capital to live in.

Figure 2: Monthly rent in Hong Kong, New York, London, Amsterdam
Source: report Mercer


It cannot be a surprise that national and international investors are showing a growing interest in the Netherlands driven by the dynamics of the Dutch economy, which is healthy and in European perspectives is one of the best as figures of 2017 show. That combined with a stable government, an international-oriented population and great investment opportunities in residential properties, offices, hotels etc. helps to consider the Netherlands as potential for your investments.
But due to let us say stock picking it is getting more difficult to find nowadays attractive real estate investments especially in the Randstad. So you have to know where to concentrate on and to inform you about the local and central state regulations you will face.   
If you are interested or if you just have questions our organization Dutch Real Estate and Investment Management (DREIM) will be pleased to help you. So don’t hesitate to contact us.
Dr. Hans Mersmann 
CRECCHKI Netherlands Convener



Tel: 2153 9683 / 2153 9273

Payment Method:

  1. Cheque Payment
    Cheque Payable: China Real Estate Chamber of Commerce Hong Kong Chapter Limited
    Postal Address:  22/F 168 Queen's Road Central, Central, Hong Kong

  2. Electronic Transfer or Direct Debit 
    Account Name: 
    China Real Estate Chamber of Commerce Hong Kong Chapter Limited
    Bank Name:  The Bank of East Asia, Limited
    Account Number:  015-514-40-63325-9
    Bank Address: 10 Des Voeux Road Central, Hong Kong  
    *Participants should bear any bank charge arising from payment outside Hong Kong and this charge should be added to the total payment.


For more information, please click here for the event eFlyer.