Saving enough money for a home deposit is the Holy Grail for first-home buyers!

Often the culmination of years of squirrelling away every spare cent you earn, reaching that target amount is no small achievement.

But, in today’s market, how much do you really need? Do you need a 20% deposit? Or will lenders let you in the door with considerably less?

Finance specialist Dennis van Lieshout, from Freek Hypotheek in Eindhoven, says that “despite all lenders tightening their lending criteria, the average deposit based on the k.k. (cost for the buyer) is 5% of the purchase price.

Here’s what you need to know:

How much deposit do you need before approaching a bank?

On average you need to put down a deposit that is equal to 5% of the purchase price to buy a home. A 5% deposit on a € 500.000 loan equates to € 25000, which is far less than many prospective buyers imagine their deposits will need to be.

That said, “new buyers often forget that they may only mortgage 100% of the actual value of the property” said Dennis.

In many cases we see the expat community is getting involved in a bidding war as such, and often overbidding substantial amounts and not realizing they may only mortgage 100% of the value of the property. The overbid amount will need to come from their savings, just like the 5% of the purchase price.

Dennis states “Different lenders negotiate different premiums and it can be worthwhile to shop around. Freek hypotheek can help with this,” he adds.