Never-ending debt: the Dutch housing market as an engine for capital accumulation

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In recent years, prices in the Dutch residential real estate sector have been rising at an increasingly rapid pace. Although works in the field of economics do provide reasons why housing prices can increase in general, these theories both prove unable to explain the rate at which prices are increasing and assume the current situation in the Dutch housing market to be a natural course of business. Through the use of a theoretical framework based on regulation theory, this thesis intends to provide an alternative vision on the Dutch housing sector. Through observing the historical processes this sector has been going through, this thesis intends to show not only that the current shape of the Dutch housing sector is not necessarily a natural one, but also shows how the latest developments are hard to understand without taking the historical processes into account. Housing has been used as a means to achieve capital accumulation in varying ways, which proves to be crucial to how this sector develops. Only once housing became used as an engine for accumulation in itself prices were able to develop as they do now. This thesis shows, through the shifts in regimes of accumulation as well as modes of regulation, how this process has been developing in the Netherlands specifically, thereby illuminating processes for which some economic works prove to be too short of memory.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen