We Keep In Touch With All Our Clients
I have the best job in the world because of the people I get to work with.
Here's their experience of us finding their home together.
By the time I got to Herman, I had been unsuccesfully seaching for a house for about a year and a half. As a solo expat, with no knowledge of the market nor the Dutch language, and working full time in a fast pace company like Booking; there was no chance of finding what I was looking for.
I got to Herman through a friend that was also looking for a house. She recommended him to me under 1 condition. She said, "Nico, be 100% that you want to buy a house, because Herman will make it happen within weeks". To be fairly honest, with my previous "solo-experience", I knew that was unlikely to happen, but still was very keen on getting help on this impossible mission.
My first impression over Herman (you draw your own conclusions) was through the following situation. I took the decision of approaching him on a Sunday afternoon, so that same day, I wrote him an email, explaining a bit of my story and my personal details. Within 45 minutes, I had a What’s App message from a random number, introducing himself as Herman, and already asking me a few more questions and willing to help me. To my surprise, his initial questions were not around how much money I make, or if I have any savings. Herman was interested in knowing my story, my way to him. This, together with a Dutch person replying working mails on a Sunday, already told me he is something special.
As per my initial impression, it was then no surprise to me that our first encounter with Herman looked more like a Tinder date than a intro meeting with your Makelaar. Herman wanted to know about my life, my origins, understand what my needs and concerns were, always trying to get an idea of what my dream house looked like.
We then begun the search. Herman would send me options, I would feedback on them, he would then give me his opinion and based on that, he would then make the appointments to see them. We visited various houses, in which Herman would give me space/time enough to go through them, ask as many questions as I wanted and once the visit finished, I would give my opinion. I slowly started realizing that the next house to visit, would cover the previous feedback that I had provided for other houses. Little by little, Herman discovered the (this is how I call it) "non-negotiables" characteristics that my dream house has (some of them, I was not even aware of them).
2 months after seeking Herman's help, I am sitting down in the empty living room of my dream house. We did not only found what I was after, but even more than expected. The house of my dreams didn't need any repairings, the negotiations went super smooth, I got every single step of the operation explained...several times (sorry Herman :P ).
To conclude, I hope these words reflect what Herman's biggest added value is. Of course he is a makelaar, it's his job and he charges for it; but in my almost 2 years of house-hunting, he was the only one that really truly cared, that walked all the way next to my side, understanding that an Expat has a lot more limitations/fears than a "normal" citizen; And for me, that is a safety feeling that is priceless...!!!
ANALYST – IRIS
Herman! Herman! Herman! Besides all the nice jokes he makes, he can also find you a space, a space where you can call home, even when you don’t (yet) know what you are looking for. Herman has extensive knowledge on everything you want to know about buying a house. He moves fast. He reacts quickly. He knows the right people. Although sometimes you need to put up with his little gimmicks to get to the fun part, but it is worth it! Thank you Herman for being my friend and my adviser!
Director – Booking.com
I was recommended by my Italian colleague Tommaso to get in touch with Herman to start my journey in owning my first apartment in Amsterdam. The day after, me and Herman have met and he has spent 2 hours with me to really get to know each other and to get a good sense of what I was looking for.
That day, we have left each other with 3 agreements: (1) when something would have been wrong with a place, no matter how much I could have liked it or not, he would have not proceeded with making an offer (2) every doubt or question I could have had about the process I should have always bring it up immediately - as buying an apartment is a big step in an individual's life - and (3) that he was not here to "buy me bricks", he was here to buy me a place I could call home.
Day after day Herman has always proven that his word matters, living up to each of his promises and showing his truth passion for his work and for helping myself, in the same way a true long time friend could do and despite mine was a long lasting search of almost 10 months.
So, here I am, writing this review in the week when the renovation work of my apartment has started.
No need to say that when I needed some advice on finalizing my renovation project, Herman was there.
No need to say either than when the renovation will be done, Herman and his lovely wife Jody will be some of the first friends to come over for a nice Italian dinner at the place I can - finally - call home.
Senior Software Engineer – Getaround B.V.
If I can sum up my experience in just one line, I'd say it was an absolute delight to work with Herman. He got me my apartment in record time, even though there were multiple obstacles he had to clear along the way, he did it like a boss. The hurdles were due to a job switch that I had done, just in case anyone's wondering. He didn't just help me buy a house but also taught me a lot of things about life. He often goes above and beyond when needed, wether it's a weekend or an odd hour of the day. You'll often hear him saying that he is just another human, don't believe him because he is a super human who is always in a mood to cheer you, motivate you and do the best for you.
UX copywriter – Booking.com
Leading up to meeting Herman, I had been having the worst house-hunting experience in Amsterdam. Everywhere I saw had too many bidders, for too high a price, and negotiation is difficult when, like me, your Dutch is terrible! I also had no idea what I was really looking for and was worried about falling for the ‘perfect’ apartment, just to discover it had mice, mold or structural problems after submitting a bid. Or that I might end up just buying a place, any place - even if I didn’t really like it that much.
I almost gave up on the idea of ever owning an apartment, when I could just stick to renting, until a friend mentioned the agent that helped them find their beautiful apartment.
I spoke to Herman, and 1 week later I had an apartment. Isn’t it funny how that works!
He made sure to ask me about what I wanted and needed, and pointed out the pros and cons of any listings I saw. I felt like I had met someone who understood what I wanted in a home better than I did!
Leaving the hard parts of the buying process with him, from the negotiations to arranging the mortgage and notary helped me have the most stress-free experience I could have dreamt of (and left me free to work on the fun parts of buying paint and furniture!). I felt confident at every step of the process that he’d thought of everything, and that I understood exactly what was going on.
It’s not just that he knew the areas, or the prices, or how to submit a bid that would be accepted. It’s that he cared about making sure I found somewhere that felt like home.
Thank you Herman for helping me find my new home.
Full-stack Developer – Booking.com
Never imagined buying an apartment would be so simple, I was planning on buying an apartment as soon as possible and by “as soon as possible” I meant within the year but Herman managed to get me a place in less than 2 weeks! I was very impressed with how quick and easy the whole process had been.
When he told me “you’ve got the apartment” I was excited but also scared thinking of all the paperwork that I would need to do but everything turned out great in the end since I had literally no work to do, Hermann did it all for me! Not only that but he would also go out of his way to help me with the whole process when it did not necessarily benefit him, for example he helped me negotiating the purchase of the furniture after the apartment purchase was signed, and he would always offer his convenient “cab service” whenever we had to meet for apartment visits and document signing.
I will definitely contact Herman again for the next place I might buy in Amsterdam.
Android Developer – Booking.com
When you hire Herman, you get the full package - housing agent, mortgage advisor and life coach. He is pretty fun and open person, he’ll listen to what you want and then advise on what’s best for you. He’ll make sure everything goes smoothly, from the offer, to the purchase agreement and even after the delivery, to ensure that you settle smoothly in your new house. It’s an experience that goes far beyond buying a house, as his logo says, he’ll bring you home.
Vasundhara & Samyak, INDIAN
Global Profit Expansion Manager & Team Lead-Development
– Reckitt Benckiser & Booking.com
Based on what we had heard about house hunting in Amsterdam, we never thought buying a house would be so simple- and quick. And we can’t thank Herman enough for making it a wonderful experience. It took mere 5 days from the first meeting to finalizing the house; and he was always available for any advice we wanted.
Knowing that he understood us well and had our best interests at heart, we could trust him completely throughout the process and that’s what made it so hassle-free. We are about to sign a beautiful apartment- and we can’t wait to move in. We had heard great things about Herman and all of them were so true. Despite being so busy, Herman gave us so much personal attention that we never felt like one of many customers. We are delighted that we had the opportunity to work with him. Thank you Herman for everything
Olga and Serhii, UKRANIAN
QA Engineer and Software developer – Qardio and Digital Chefs
Have you ever tried fighting rats and then mice in your own apartment within the same few weeks? Well, we have. And as fun as this might sound we wanted a better place to live in.
So, we decided we wanted to buy an apartment in Amsterdam. That sounded not just ambitious but simply impossible. Especially considering that we are two expats (not the wealthiest ones) who do not speak any Dutch (not the smartest ones either) and do not hold any substantial savings (again – far from being wealthy or smart). Really? In Amsterdam? A city where the real estate market is so hot that viewings are as crowded as the Red Light District on King’s Day? Yep.
In the beginning we did our own research (as we thought) and started our adventure through Amsterdam apartment viewings in search of a place we could actually afford (does not sound like a dream adventure, does it?). After seeing around a dozen of those (what a joy) we already started to leave any hopes of finding a home where you don’t have to ask anybody’s permission to put up a painting on the wall. But the darkest times are always right before the dawn as you know. We finally got a contact of some “magical” realtor that our friends mentioned a couple of months before.
This was Herman. During our first meeting after having a short talk he promised that as a present for our birthdays (which were in two months) he would get a nice new home for us.
Well, that did not sound very realistic at the time. Especially when Herman said that we could apply for mortgage at only one bank in Netherlands (since one of us was at his new job for just a few weeks). We smiled at Herman’s confidence politely and wished us all some luck.
How surprised were we when two weeks before the initial plan we got the place! It was the 2nd apartment that we liked! And that was not just some shoe box (Herman’s words) but a really cool, modern, light and big apartment. The place so great that we would be too afraid to even go for viewing if that was just us. Everything happened so fast that we still cannot quite believe our luck. And we did not even have to do anything (seriously anything!). Herman took care of it all: the viewings, the bidding, the mortgage application, the notary, all the documents and appointments. What left for us was just to sit there with our whiskey glasses and celebrate this huge life changing event.
That’s the kind of magic that Herman does and the one that he shares with you. The purchase of the place is not the end of that magic either. Herman keeps being there for you when you need him: with new furniture and moving and celebrating of course! When you decide to work with Herman you get not just a realtor, you get a friend. Herman is the man who always stands by his word, the man you can rely on both professionally and personally after just a simple handshake. The man who is always there for you and who is always completely honest with you. So yes, if you want to have that sort of person in your life - Herman is the one to go to.
User Researcher – BOOKING.COM
I met Herman at a time when I was getting a bit discouraged about buying an apartment in Amsterdam, and was feeling overwhelmed. It seemed impossible to find anything within my budget, and I was almost ready to give up and stick to renting an apartment. That all changed once he started helping me with this process, he is very knowledgeable about the market and a great negotiator.
Once I found an apartment that I loved, it all went very quickly and Herman took care of all the research and paperwork. He made my life much easier!
He has become my trusted advisor, and I really value his opinion because I can tell he cares about finding the right apartment for all his clients. Thanks to his dedication, I found the perfect new home - and with a garden too! I recommend his services because he really goes above and beyond to make sure his clients will be happy in their potential new homes.
PRODUCT MANAGER – BOOKING.COM
It was after 3 months of unsuccessful, frustrating and unassisted search that I finally met Herman: from that moment, buying a house stopped being a mechanical and overwhelming process and turned into a wonderful team-work experience.
From the very beginning, Herman was able to read me and understand my needs and expectations, reassuring me and keeping hopes high in a moment where I thought getting the house of my dreams was simply going to be impossible. In all honesty, I can tell you that if it wasn’t for him, it would have indeed never happened.
The main obstacles one has to face when looking for a place to buy are bidding wars, budget and the risk of getting a bad deal. It is easy to fall for an apartment, overbid to get it and only later on find out about hidden flaws and structural problems that make you regret your choice and get you back to your starting point, every time feeling more discouraged and hopeless. Thanks to his experience and extensive knowledge, Herman will simply prevent all this to happen to you and make sure that when you make your decision, it’s going to be the best one.
I have decided to put my whole trust in him and have never had second thoughts about it. He went the extra mile on several occasions to make things happen, from negotiations to mortgage approval, making the process seamless and stress-free for me.
Last but not least, Herman is there to support you not just professionally, but also personally. He is not only the number-one expert you need by your side to make a huge investment with confidence, but also the friend who will boost your mood and hopes every time you need it.
You can be sure that at the end, you won’t simply feel like you bought a house, but that you are finally walking into the one place you want to call home.
Thank you Herman for everything you did and for being such a precious friend.
STEPHAN & PATRICIa, GERMAN AND ECUADORIAN
DATA SCIENTIST – BOOKING.COM
How hard can it be to buy a house in Amsterdam? If you listen to your fellow expats and their stories it seems to be quite an Odyssey.
Not with Herman!!! From starting our search until signing at the notary not even two weeks past! He supported us at every step throughout the whole process and was available 24/7 for whatever questions we had. Most importantly, if we were to buy another place in Amsterdam again I would not doubt for a second to call Herman.
Oleksiy & Olena, UKRaine
A2P Development Manager – VEON Ltd
To put things short for lazy readers we can say: Do it with Herman! He doesn’t just buy you bricks but a house and he means it.
For diligent readers we share our story… Herman was not the first advisor we approached. Previously we talked to a few who made us believe that our case was to keep renting for as long as market in the Netherlands is unsettled. Does anyone here foresee the Dutch real estate market to settle any time soon? No, neither did we.
We found Herman thanks a friend’s advice. Our first contact with him was on July 11th and on August 9th we were igning the purchase contract for our beautiful house – fitting all our expectations and budget, and just 20km away from Amsterdam in a quiet and lovely neighbourhood of Purmerend. Despite the small amount of time between initial contact and purchase, Herman devoted much time to us. He paid us a few visits trying to understand our family, our needs, as well as the needs of our then 6 year old daughter. He really feels what will suit you. Just keep your cards open and you will get the dream house you truly deserve. Once we were decided about our choice, he made the magic happen and got a house sold to us at the requested and expected price. It appears buying a house can actually be no stress. Besides being professional in purchases, Herman also gives professional advice in all bank, finance, mortgage, insurance, etc issues. So, really no headache for you. He will cover it all. We really enjoyed and are thankful for our cooperation. Wishing all the future house owners’ the same luck with Expats at home!
Product manager (Booking.com)
Looking for an apartment in Amsterdam can be scary. Herman turned a scary process into an easy and enjoyable journey. We found my dream house and were able to make an offer that was accepted within a month. Herman goes way above and beyond of what you would expect from a makelaar. I can’t thank him enough.
Weverton & Priscila, brazilian
Product Owner (Booking.com) / Marketing Specialist (citizenm hotels)
Finding a good house is something very difficult to do. Finding a home more is even more difficult. The situation gets worse when you are not in your home country and you don’t speak the local language. We can assure that the help from Herman was crucial to find our place in The Netherlands.
Always open and responsive, we had someone we learned to trust that was there to find not only a house, but a home for us. In a short period of time after we started our search we got the house keys in our hands. We had good times dealing with him as he took care of all the details, from scheduling appointments, guidance about mortgage, pointing the pros/cons of the houses shortlisted and arranging everything during the final stages to get the keys. We can assure that we didn’t have a broker but a friend helping us on our quest!
Janani & Nishank, INDIAN
Senior Product developer, Brand Manager & CEO – booking.com and tui
We had just decided that we should buy a house and a good friend and colleague at work recommended Herman to me. We met one evening and Herman told us he has four cats and loves cats and that’s when I knew he is the right guy for us :) and my husband Nishank was also very convinced right after meeting him (not because of the cats though).
Herman has been amazing to work with. We had a great rhythm going between the three of us. He understood what we were looking for, encouraged us and also tried his best to make sure all our quirks and not just our major requirements were taken care of. We trust that Herman really cares about us and has our best interests in his heart. We are in love with the house he helped us sign and can’t wait to move in. We had a smooth ride while looking for houses and he helped us remain stress free. We would like to thank Herman for his hard work, his dedication and finding us a perfect house not mention all the banter, jokes and fun we had through the process.
APRIL & James, AMERICAN
Writer and iOS Developer
This being our first home buying experience in the Netherlands, we were very overwhelmed by the process ahead of us. Herman stepped in and made every step digestible, clear, and even fun. It didn't feel like a sterile business arrangement. It felt like a friend who knew wayyy more than we did guiding us through and genuinely caring that we were happy in the long term.
Finding the right house, he was with us to point out details we didn't know to look for or ask about. Making an offer, he knew what to bid, when to let it go and when to push to get it because the deal was right. The mortgage he got us exceeded our expectations for affordable and the process was easy.
With the mortgage closed, he was still there for us to help with construction contractors and tax advice.
We're very happy and can't wait to recommend Herman to friends and colleagues!
Designer at Booking.com
Since I moved to The Netherlands (2014), I wondered if my dream to have my own house would ever happen. After two years, I started looking. Since I was new to the whole real state game (it was also my first time living abroad), I felt overwhelmed and lost and was seeking for guidance. At the time, the market in Amsterdam was already crazy and the professionals I asked for help were too busy or simply didn’t care enough to guide me or answer my questions. So, I gave up.
In 2018, after hearing from close friends about Herman, I decided to give it a try again. I messaged him on a Saturday morning and two hours later he was at my doorstep. He carefully listened to me, what I was looking for, limitations and preferences - but, especially, to what I really needed. He gave me a tour in areas of Amsterdam and surroundings - areas I was curious about or didn’t know about but didn’t have anyone to help me with the information I needed - and this helped me with my decision with data points I wouldn’t be able to gather by looking only at Funda.
12 days later (less than two weeks!) I had my house - with a fair offer made and accepted. His negotiation skills are impressive, and he doesn’t give up. It felt like magic! Herman was by my side in every visit, documentation preparation, and key delivery. He never left my questions unanswered and every interaction I had with him felt like I was his only client - although I know he’s very busy. Everything went well from start to finish, it was so seamless and fast it’s hard to believe.
That gave me the confidence I needed to commit to my goal and I’m really happy I had the chance to work with him. I couldn’t recommend him enough! Thank you, Herman, for making such a big life step feel calm and good.
Carlo & Verna, German and Taiwanese
Business Developer + FINANCIAL Customer Service
Shortly after Verna & I moved from Shanghai to Amsterdam we started thinking about buying a property, as rent in Amsterdam is extremely high and interest levels at an all-time low. We had a look at some properties, but got lost in the processes of bidding wars, and the resulting slim chances to get the apartment we wanted. After keeping ourselves busy with work and other things for another 2 years, we finally got searching again for a potential object to buy.
After 2 failed bidding attempts, I got to know Herman at an apartment viewing and we sat together immediately to discuss our wishes and his proposed services! 4 weeks (!!!) later we signed the purchasing contract of the apartment we live in now! We are very happy with the apartment and having made this big step in our lives! Herman is extremely knowledgeable and efficient about all the process: Filtering for appropriate properties, arranging the viewings, getting into the negotiations, bid placing and even at organizing the mortgage, notary appointments up to the final key hand-over!
While of course everything was new and emotional for us, he was always at our side, to support us with his expertise, but also his spirit! It is very comforting to have someone, who is fighting for your cause like he does!
We are very grateful to have met Herman as our advisor, but also as the special person he is!
Goksen & Ege, turkish
UX Designers at Booking.com
Herman asked us to do two things when we initially started working; to trust him and to have fun. In less than a month, he helped us find and buy our next home, proving himself more than worthy of our trust, and he also provided the fun part himself. we had lots of fun while doing just that.
Herman is very good at what he does, and he truly understands what it means to be an expat in the Netherlands, shielding and warning us against the pitfalls in the market. He was always available whenever we had questions, and gave us critical insights when we were scouting neighborhoods and assessing houses. He made it a point to understand what we liked, and once he did, he was able to immediately narrow down our search to really strong candidates.
Once we had found “the one”, seeing our enthusiasm and how we fell in love with the place, Herman immediately got to work. He displayed his prowess in the business by gathering the statistical data to help us place a strategic bid, gathered several quotes for the mortgage and provided critical guidance and information in order to help us make a decision.
As magical as it sounds, we won the first and only house we bid on, thanks to Herman. Even more magically, once the winning bid was announced, it took him merely 1 week to get the mortgage application and bank guarantee approved.
Herman did not just help us find a house, he helped us find a home. While doing that, he also made sure to find us a home that, from the looks of it, will be a worthwhile investment down the line.
I just want to share my experience working with Herman. As expat when I just came to Netherlands I started dreaming about home for me and my family in this wonderful country. I’ve heard how it is complicated to buy a house in Amsterdam from my fellow expats. How many viewing, bidding, negotiating you need to do, how many months spend on looking, making offers and losing again. I thought it is really hard, it make sense, to get a house in the mooiste stad. And when Herman has bought a house from my dreams in one week and 4000 euros below the asking price, I didn’t believe it. I thought it’s too good to be true. And now after one year living here, in the best house ever, I can’t express all my gratitude to Herman. I wish everybody can start living their dreams.
Sabine & HolgeR, germany
We were looking to move to the Netherlands from the UK with our 3 cats. While we didn't want to waste money on renting, the prospect of buying a house seemed daunting — overwhelming even, given that our Dutch was limited to "ja", "nee", "gefeliciteerd" and "bedankt".
When we tried to get support and information from a range of expat mortgage specialists, we were disappointed with their lack of flexibility. It seemed that their only specialism was the fact that they spoke English, but they didn't seem to understand the challenges of our situation. We were ready to give up and just rent a place for a year or so, until we'd be settled and use the "regular" Dutch financial services.
But then we met Herman.
Two months later, and we've bought our dream house with a Dutch mortgage.
While trusting a single person with a matter as important as buying a house in another country seemed a big thing, Herman made it easy and provided knowledge, helpful opinions and reassurance throughout the process. His help stretched from recommending areas to viewings, asking revealing questions, driving us around, helping us apply for bank accounts — the list goes on. His negotiation skills more than paid for himself, and much of what we learnt from him about life in the Netherlands is invaluable.
But, perhaps most importantly: Herman's unique style made the whole process fun! We never felt like one of many customers, but always personally taken care of.
We can't recommend Herman highly enough — we wouldn't be here without him.
Looking for houses while you are employed is extremely time-consuming and overwhelming, there is a need for someone to guide you with this. It was the time I was thinking to buy a house when I was put in touch with Herman by a colleague of mine. Right during our very first meeting, he was attentively listening and making a profile of me and my girlfriend in order to find the perfect house for us. Even in that first meeting, he already suggested a fitting house to visit.
The journey to find the perfect house for us wasn’t easy and that’s when we needed Herman the most. Besides arranging and coming with us to the visits, he was informing us about the neighbourhood and the location of the house as well. Thanks to him we eliminated several places where we would’ve been uncomfortable after the purchase.
In about a month we found our dream house! We agreed to go for it and discussed it with Herman. One day after we made the bid, he informed us that we reached an agreement with the owners. With his perfect negotiation skills, we were ready to buy the house!
In addition to his skills, he was really quick with all the paper work as well. Once we said ‘yes’, he started the process of applying for the mortgage as well as the other necessary steps in order to purchase the house. Everything was done within 10 days because we requested to finalise the process in a short time.
Herman was there, guiding and supporting us with each step of getting our dream house. Alongside his negotiation skills and quick approach to paper work, his friendly nature made this process excellent and free from confusion for us.
I would recommend Herman for those who are planning or already looking for their dream houses/apartments. If you want to make a well-informed decision which will not cause any regrets afterwards, he is the person you are looking for!
Thank you Herman for this amazing journey, it wouldn’t have been this great without you!”
SERGIO, COSTA RICA
I started my year thinking about buying a property in Amsterdam to live in, without full certainty about commiting for such a big decision.
After meeting Herman Gommer, from Expats at Home, for an introductory coffee, he helped me find the answers to most of the questions that were in my mind. He advised me on what the implications of buying in Amsterdam are, what my mortgage could be, but most important: he took the time to get to know me well, so he knew better than me what I was looking for.
This was great! As he also guided me in the process of searching websites such as funda, on the search for a place.
Only 2 weeks later, and no more than 2 house viewings, I got my place!!! Asking price, 12min from the station, huge space and with the “gezellig” (as dutchies say for “cozy”) feeling of home; this is what he does: he helps expats find a home rather than just a house.
Herman helps you right from the start of knowing what you want, to the big day when signing and getting your keys. He makes the whole process for you effortless by taking care of the paper work, mortgage, bidding, and much more!
He has a big heart and truly cares about all his clients, which I believe at the end become good friends as well :)
I definitely recommend you write Herman a message and have a coffee with him - he will get back to you on whatsapp as well!