After a successful search, you’ve bought a house. The purchase agreement has been signed, the mortgage applied for, and the preparations for the actual move are in full swing. The day of the key transfer has arrived. All involved parties will come to the property for an inspection. Is the state of the property still as agreed upon in the purchase agreement? Are all the things that are meant to be in the house actually there? Maurice van der Kroft, MVA Certified Expat Broker at KNAP Makelaardij, will tell you more about the transfer of your new home.

Maurice van der Kroft

Customs can change from country to country when it comes to the transferring of homes. In France, for example, every hole in the wall is usually restored, while in Germany the seller usually takes his kitchen to his new place.

How are things in the Netherlands?

The standard agreement is that the property is transferred empty and ‘sweep-clean’. In this case, empty means that everything that’s fixed to floors and walls stays in the property. This can lead to some disputes, however. Moreover, in many cases more things are left behind than just the ones that are fixed to floors and walls.

List of goods

When a property goes up for sale, the seller provides a ‘List of Goods’ (‘Lijst van Zaken’ in Dutch). This document states how the property will be transferred, what stays behind, what the owner will take, and which things are up for negotiation. It’s possible to change some of these things during the negotiation phase. The List of Goods, with or without amendments, is added to the purchase agreement and forms part of the agreement between the seller and buyer. It has become a part of the contract, from which rights can be derived.

What to expect during the transfer of the purchased property

As MVA Certified Expat brokers, we are aware that cultural differences might come into play during the purchasing process. Therefore, we will always bring the List of Goods to your attention and inform you of its contents and what to expect from the transfer of your newly acquired home.


During the last part of the inspection, a form is filled out with the current meter readings of electricity, gas and water. The market for gas and electricity has been privatised in the Netherlands, so you can register with a supplier of your choice. Obviously, the same goes for Internet and telephone providers.

After the inspection has taken place, the whole party goes to a solicitor, where the deed of transfer is signed, and you’ll receive the keys.

KNAP Makelaardij is affiliated with MVA’s Certified Expat Brokers. In case you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact any of our MVA Certified Expat Brokers. We would love to be of assistance.