In this paper, an examination is made of the accessibility of the homeownership market using measures that include both supply and demand characteristics of regional housing markets. These measures are applied empirically on an extensive dataset that covers the Dutch housing market. The analysis quantifies the extent to which the position of first-time buyers on the homeownership market has weakened over time and identifies the driving factors of this change. It is found that smaller portions of the housing market are becoming affordable due to financial constraints of young households. However, more importantly, first-time buyers today need to contend with a much larger group of competing bidders on every house that suits their financial situation, than ever before.