What to buy with €700.000?

We have several friends and family that are currently looking at buying of building new homes. The prices they are willing to spend ranges between about €650.000 and €750.000. I personally think they are bonkers, but I still love them anyways. So, what to buy with €700.000?

What to buy with €700.000?

As noted in this post, if you can survive on about €25.000 a year (after taxes) as a couple, you need about €682.000 in wealth at a 4% ROI (net cash-flow) or a 4% SWR (for your index funds/bonds). So why on earth would you spend that same amount on a house? That is beyond me. I know there is something to say for home comfort and that you are happy living in certain area’s, but still! It’s basically a decision between being FI or having a HUGE liability. You pick 😉

Anyhow, what can you buy with €700.000? Let’s have a looksy!

Amsterdam

If you have about €700.00 to spend, and you want to live in Amsterdam. Behold this! You can actually spend €10.000 per m2 of living space 🙂 Mind you, you will be living on the highly desirable Herengracht. That’s hard to beat! However, you pay €350.000 per room for this privilege. Darn.

What to buy with €700.000? Amsterdam
What to buy with €700.000? An Amsterdam Condo!

Wijchen

Want a little bit more space than in Amsterdam? You can buy this little National Monument (Rijksmonument) in Wijchen near Nijmegen. For the same price as in Amsterdam you get almost 5 times as much living space + close to 3 hectares of land. Heck, the house is newer too.

Only the upkeep is going to be horribly expensive, since it’s classified as a National Monument. That being said, you can request funds from the government to help pay for the property maintenance. Also the grounds might be contaminated with asbestos. Lovely! Let’s move on.

What to buy with €700.000? Why not live in Wijchen
What to buy with €700.000? Why not live in Wijchen

Moving to France?

You know I could not resist throwing this one in the mix. Still got a soft spot for ….. castles! How about this beauty! This has almost 9 times the living space compared to the condo in Amsterdam. It also has about 3 hectares of lands. And the beauty, this place might even make you some money if you (Air)BnB out a few rooms 🙂 You got 16 rooms anyways!

What to buy with €700.000? A French Castle of course!
What to buy with €700.000? A French Castle of course!

A Yacht?

Want more freedom? How about this? Yes, you bankrupt yourself on maintenance, but at least you will have awesome views! Should you buy a yacht? No, of course not, but look at it! I’m already sold, screw FIRE!

What to buy with €700.000? A Sailing Yacht
What to buy with €700.000? A Sailing Yacht

A car?

Ok, this is just dumb. But I like cars, so what can you get for €700.000? Well this would work. You even have money left for a few options and perhaps a driver for a year or so. Who doesn’t was such a great depreciating asset? Heck, you could live in it!

What to buy with €700.000 ? A Rolls Royce Phantom
What to buy with €700.000 ? A Rolls Royce Phantom

On another note, you could have also bought the Lamborghini from the pope!

An Island

Now this is perfect! An island in the Bahama’s. Not that you really need to avoid taxes anymore because you would have spent all your money, but still! Any money you have left still needs to be enough for a one way ticket, camping gear and fishing rods. Plane not included!

What to buy with €700.000? An tropical Island in the Bahama's
What to buy with €700.000? An tropical Island in the Bahama’s

Oh, you want a house too? No problem! How about this beauty?! A wooden home on an island in a river 🙂 It’s built up in the air to keep you dry during floods, smart thinking. The owner even wants to help finance it! With 36 acres (14,5 hectares!) you won’t have to see your neighbours either. Nice and quiet.

What to buy with €700.000? An Island in West Virginia
What to buy with €700.000? An Island in West Virginia

So, what else can you buy for €700.000? Let’s hear it!

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30 Comments

  1. If I have to decide between being financially free or having a castle, yacht, rolls royce or whatever, my choice would be crystal clear: freedom!
    I mean it’s very nice having this objects and I can very much enjoy it. But when they are limiting my freedom, because I have to work my ass off to pay liabilities and ensure maintaining, then it’s not for me. I simply value the idea to do whatever I like, without being dependent on money, much much more. However I do understand that other people have different preferences and opinions. And it’s totally OK.
    For me personally I’ve learnt, that the pleasure of having such things does not last long. That is why I preferer to collect great moments and experiences. So I would spend this money on FI (investing) and partly for traveling.

  2. Hello CF! I’m living on the west coast of the US and harboring a now not secret dream of moving to Delft post-FI, in about 5 years (a good friend is there and it’s close to my husband’s family). I’ve been scanning Funda regularly , but hardly see anything in the center for under 225k, even very small apartments. Our kids are grown so a tiny two bedroom would be perfect. Is it even feasible? Are there other nearby cities that are more affordable?

    1. Wow, you are the first that notes Delft as their post FI spot. Great little city indeed though 🙂 But, like everything in western Netherlands, it’s expensive as heck (as you saw). Problem is the university. So many houses are converted for student use, which drives up prices (Leiden has the same problem). Just checked, but there is indeed very little available for your price mark. Considering the current housing market, there might already be some overbidding going on! You might have better luck trying in Rotterdam or Gouda, both have got a (good) train connection do Delft, but prices are marginally lower. Otherwise you could also try Schiedam and Zoetermeer, albeit I probably would spend a bit more money and pick delft if possible.

      1. Thank you for your reply! I really loved the city, and somehow don’t think I can talk my husband into moving to Hanoi, which is my other dream… So, I guess we will keep looking !

  3. It’s quite interesting. In the comments you already meant ‘It didn’t made us happy’. Well, that’s a very important sentence. While it didn’t made you happy it isn’t said that it can’t make them happy. Some people like a big garden, their own fruit tree’s and a workshop to do some hobby’ing around. Some people would absolutely hate a garden and would prefer an apartment. Quite personal. There are even people who are getting happy by watching Baywatch movies, can you imagine? I even know a family who went traveling in Europe for 9 weeks? Why on hell would you do that, do you know what you could have done with that money if you’d invested it? I’ve traveled and it didn’t made me happy so why would you do that?

    You see what I did there? 😉

    On the other hand, only 23% of the houses in NL are detached, for the ‘Randstad’ it’s only about 10%.
    For example in the UK it’s about 35% of the houses, for the USA it’s about 82%. Quite a difference in availability of detached houses and so in the prices of them.. 😉

    Maybe they’ve thought quite long about what they want in life, how they want to live with their family’s and how they want to raise their kids and what’s important for them. Maybe they’ve calculated that it’s cheaper to buy/build the house they ultimately want to live and retire in earlier in life than to buy another home in between. Maybe they can even just work 2 or 3 days a week and still retire when they’re 50 and maybe they don’t want to retire in their 30’s or 40’s at all and do they prefer working parttime for a longer time?

    1. Just for the record, Baywatch didn’t really make me happy 😉 Gosh that was a bad movie, still surprised I made it to the end!

      My point with the happy is, I though I was going to be happy with a big detached house. But after 5 years of living in one, I had to come to the conclusion that It didn’t. I think many more people will have the same feeling once they experience the freedom of a 9 week road trip. Just saying. But indeed you are right, everything is personal. Problem is that you don’t always know at the beginning if it is going to make you happy (and for how long!).

  4. For me and Scrappy we would throw €700k into European peer to peer lending platforms.

    Current return is around 12% but if we project forward and assume *some* future losses due to a poor economic cycle, then let’s assume our annual return is more like 10%.

    €70k a year would be more than enough to live on if I wasn’t working. My wife and I have a small holiday house in a lower cost European country which cost approx €70k to buy the land and renovate the existing wreck of a building and now it’s a beautiful house in a beautiful part of the world. Living expenses would be less than €25k a year including schooling costs.

    So if I didn’t already have the house and a €1.5m P2P portfolio and suddenly came into €700k, I would probably throw the whole lot into P2P lending with buy back guarantee and after the first year, buy a house in a low cost European country, and in the second year I would FIRE!! Boom!

    1. You have more balls than me. I’m staying far away from P2P lending, only downwards potential. And people that pay double digits in interest are not the most financial savvy ones, which are going to have a fun time in the next downward economic cycle. Best of luck mate!

  5. Buy some land in Italy, build an off-grid container house with big vegetable garden and use the rest to invest 😀

  6. That Chateau really does look awesome! Been binge-watching “Escape to the Chateau” with my wife, and in weak moments we are considering going down that path! – Only in weak moments though 😉 That life is hard work, no doubt. I think a condo in the south of Spain would be good too, though. I’d love to spend the winters in a warmer climate!..

    Food for thought! Thanks 😉

  7. The unfortunate reality is that the new building house prices have increased by almost 100k in the last 3 years in some cases… Supply and demand accross the board seems to be excuse.

    I am in an exact situation as your family and friends and will likely bite the bullet for a 500k property for the growing family plus nearby amenities (Den Haag).

    Now as you say, with 682k one can have 4% return, but that’s assuming one had 700k lying around?

    Another approach as Claudia rightfully states (which I have given thought to) is to buy a few properties and rent them out, living in one. My view on this approach is to go for it if you are not bothered about bringing up a family in a southern country. A concern is what future/prospective is there for your offspring? What about the infrastructure and living standards. You cannot really compare Netherlands with Spain in those perspectives.

    Ultimately I believe that this is a personal decision, but I guess is nothing wrong in living in a house you want/desire/can afford, enjoying it for as much as you deem necessary, then sell/rent and move somewhere else…

    1. It is a personal decision indeed. One I’m struggling to understand. This might be because we used to own a large detached house. We found that it didn’t make us happy, despite the comfortable/luxury living and good location. Having freedom to do what you want to do with your time gives more satisfaction and does make one happier, for us at least. I don’t want to be forced to work for a big expensive house. Why are you buying a house for €500.000, while you could also happily live in one for €200.000 and have €300.000 less debt (or more assets, depending on your wealth). That being said, I hear you on the explosion in costs to build something new, labour & materials have become really expensive lately.

  8. I’m curious what you will pay on a monthly basis when you get a mortgage today of €650.000,-. Do you have any idea on that?

    1. Based on 100% financing, 2.13%, and no tax credits: €2.445/month or €29.340/year
      Yeah, that’s more than the €25.000/year next income that I was referring to at the beginning of the post 😉

  9. I came here to scoff…but damn that castle in France looks good!

    I’m mostly of the view that, in life you can mostly buy *anything*, you just can’t buy *everything*. If people have run the numbers and it makes sense for them then good luck to them. It’s not what I would spend my money on but if it’s going to give them the life that they want then they should go for it.

    As for me, if I had 700,000 then I would spend it on a nice stream of dividends to keep me warm on this cold February nights!

    1. That castle is great, isn’t it? There is just so much fun stuff to find when you have money. Not that you should necessarily should spend you money on it! Dividends sound pretty good to me too!

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