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Chinese buyers attracted to Hungarian real estate

Demand for Hungarian real estate from buyers outside the EU, although still relatively low, has grown lately. The percentage of foreign buyers, including from the EU, was 6-7% last year, online business daily vg.hu reports. Some 2% were citizens of countries outside of the European Union and European Economic Area.

Annually about 150,000 real estate purchase contracts are signed in Hungary. Of these, some 3,200 required permission from authorities last year, which is a 10% increase compared to 2016. Permission is required for non-EU citizens, vg.hu notes.

Within this group, purchases by Chinese buyers were 20% higher last year; however, the rise was not from a significant base, as the increase was from 1,213 to 1,573 homes purchased. Second-ranked are Russians, with real estate bought mainly in Hévíz, known as a thermal bath resort, and in parts of central Budapest, especially in Districts 6 and 7.

Foreigners buy mainly apartments for around EUR 200,000 in central Pest and villas worth EUR 300,000-400,000 in Buda, László Hegedűs, a partner at the Duna House real estate agency, told vg.hu.

A recent development is for expats who choose not to rent, but to buy apartments for EUR 200,000, which they can sell a few years later for significantly more, perhaps EUR 240,000-250,000, Hegedűs added.