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Michiel de BruineHead of Asset Management Residential
There is a large and rapidly growing need in the Netherlands for liberalised sector rental homes and we respond to that need with homes for a wide range of target groups. The Residential Fund portfolio has a strong focus on homes in the mid-rental segment of the residential market, from families and smaller households to starters and young urban professionals. Our main focus is on homes in the centres of the major cities in the Randstad urban conurbation.
The Dutch residential market is recovering more rapidly than expected in the Randstad region, which has led to a rise in house prices and rents. This is making it more difficult for investors to find high-quality residential real estate in the liberalised rental market. We are now reaping the benefits of our commitment to this market, as we continued to invest heavily in quality real estate during the downturn in the housing market. Bouwinvest’s strategy also involves working closely with local developers and local authorities and this has enabled us to acquire a large number of top-notch residential projects in the Randstad region.
On top of this, we have defined our own tenant profiles, determined more by lifestyle than by simple demographic data. We know who our tenants are and where they are coming from, and we know what kind of homes they want and where they want to live. Thanks to our targeted marketing initiatives, the majority of our new-build projects are virtually 100% let upon completion. We alos have one of the highest occupancy rates in the liberalised rental sector.
We believe that investments in rental homes provide good, solid returns for our investors. On top of this, rental income provides a solid hedge against inflation. We only invest in prime real estate in economically strong regions, and we carefully weigh any and all risks these investments involve.
We build sustainable homes because that is what our tenants demand and what the market wants. And as we expect demand for sustainable homes to only increase in the future, it also increases the future value of our homes. This is why we listen and talk to our tenants, to find out where their priorities lie and to achieve the perfect combination of maximum comfort and minimum environmental impact.