Hungarians are increasingly choosing to rent their homes rather than buy them. This is leading to changes on the real estate market as investors buy more homes to let out, according to a report on online news portal nepszava.hu.
According to data released by the Central Statistical Office (KSH), last year 5.2% of Hungarian families were renting the home they lived in, compared to 3.6% in 2011. Meanwhile, the proportion of families living in homes they own somewhat decreased, from 87.6% to 85.2%, nepszava.hu reported.
László Balogh, an economic specialist at the ingatlan.com real estate portal, said that many people from rural areas move to cities searching for jobs, but the value of their homes is not enough to buy a home in urban areas. The only solution is to rent, which is not easy, given that rents in cities average HUF 130,000 per month, while average salaries are around HUF 200,000.
This may change with higher subsidies for those renting homes introduced by the government this year. As reported earlier, from 2018 employers can offer employees tax-free accommodation expense subsidies for up to five years if they live more than 60 kilometers or more than three hoursʼ travel away from their workplace. The new regulations are aimed at improving labor mobility across the country.
Given the trends, more and more investors are buying not only one or two flats, but are looking for more, sometimes even buying up whole floors of a building, Balogh said. At the same time, he added, customers are also looking for better areas, sometimes by letting an apartment they own and spending a higher amount to live in a better environment.