Building your dream home together

Patrick is proud as a peacock of his own apartment. Proud because he had the courage to carry out the entire construction project from start to finish. Proud because he did not buy just any apartment, but instead built one completely according to his own taste. And proud that he tackled the project together with his new neighbours, who have now also become good friends over the past months.

Starters on the housing market develop their own residential projects

Patrick could not have imagined a couple of years ago that he would now have his own apartment. Back then he did have a clear picture of what his perfect home would look like, but it turned out to be difficult to find an apartment in his hometown of Almere that fulfilled his image of the ideal residence. He did not want to buy into an existing project or purchase a standard home in a new housing development. He wanted to determine what his home would look like. He wanted, for example, to have a very big bathroom. So in order to make his dream home a reality, he decided to build it himself.

'Rabobank helped us by providing the pre-financing so we could, for example, engage an architect to draw up the blueprints.'

Patrick Draaijer, Starter on the housingmarket

Neighbours become friends

Starting a residential project with others turned out to have more advantages than building his home on his own. That is why he started looking for people who would like to join him in taking on the challenge and sharing in each other’s dream. He found them in his own circle of friends and acquaintances. The only problem was that no one had any prior experience with construction projects. How do you set about realising such a big project? Patrick and the other members of the construction group engaged a professional consultant to guide them through the process. They set up a Collective Private Commission (CPC) association together so they could collectively act as the commissioning party in order to buy plots together, make decisions concerning the construction, engage an architect and find a contractor. The future neighbours got to know each other very well during the project that extended from the first idea to the actual construction. Patrick: 'We grew closer during that period and we now form a really tight-knit group of friends.' He looks with pride at the home they realised together.

'The best thing of all is to see people now enjoying living in their dream homes.'

Arthur Bouvy, Director of Business Banking at Rabobank Almere

Driving force of the housing market

The municipality of Almere has set up a ‘planning costs fund’ together with the local Rabobank in order to support the CPC. Planning costs are the expenses the CPC has to make before they build the house, such as the costs for establishing a Collective Private Commission association, drawing up the construction design and professional construction project management. 'We are pleased to help make a local initiative such as this possible,' says Arthur Bouvy, Director of Business Banking at Rabobank Almere, 'But it is actually the people themselves who achieve this. We like to work in partnership with people who feel engaged and committed. When you bring them together, you notice that they stand stronger together than if they were to all work as individuals. Residential projects like this form a key driving force for the housing market in Almere. As Rabobank we think it is important to help get the housing market in our region back on track. This is how we can enable a city to grow. But the best thing of all is to see people now enjoying living in their dream homes.'

130 homes in Almere were realised through the planning costs fund set up by the municipality and Rabobank.

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