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The housing market boom in Hungary, mapped

You don't need to be a real estate expert to see that in recent times, the Hungarian housing market was in a perpetual gold-rush - in the past couple of years, prices produced double-digit growth. But much of the current data shows that this trend could be coming to an end, and real estate values will keep slowly climbing instead of the unprecedented explosion that had been going on since 2015. 

We are going to visually demonstrate this process using data from the Hungarian Central Statistical Office's real estate database that compiles information about sales of second-hand homes based on the actual sales figures rather than advertised prices.

Most complaints about out-of-hand property prices concern Budapest, but life did not stop in larger towns outside the capital either. The foreign-currency loan boom during the first half of the 2000s already created a similar increase in prices as the current wave, however, in 2006, the average price per square metre of homes in larger cities in the countryside still remained under 200 000 Forints (~€600 at current rates). 

Housing market in big cities

av cost per sq m

properties sold

Győr

Debrecen

Szeged

Miskolc

Pécs

400 000 Ft

4000 pcs

3000

300 000

200 000

2000

1000

100 000

2006

2014

2018

2006

2006

2014

2014

2018

2018

2006

2014

2018

2006

2014

2018

2006

2014

2018

2010

2010

2010

2010

2010

2010

Prices and sales figures in big cities

average cost per sq. meter

properties sold

Szeged

Debrecen

400 e Ft

4000pcs

3000

300 e

200 e

2000

1000

100 e

2006

2014

2018

2006

2006

2014

2014

2018

2018

2010

2010

2010

Miskolc

Pécs

400 e Ft

4000pcs

300 e

3000

200 e

2000

100 e

1000

2006

2014

2018

2006

2014

2018

2010

2010

Győr

400 e Ft

4000 pcs

300 e

3000

200 e

2000

100 e

1000

2006

2014

2018

2010

But the latest boom quickly drove prices way past their 2006 levels: The comparative maps below show many streets turning yellow over a ten-year period, indicating that more and more streets have entered the price category of 300 000 - 400 000 Forints per square metre (€900-€1200). On the 2018 maps, there are hardly any green streets left, the only exception is Miskolc. The city situated in the north-eastern part of Hungary remained surprisingly cheap compared to other cities of similar sizes that similarly have universities, prices seemed to go up only in a few suburban streets close to the downtown area. Debrecen, on the other hand, saw a price hike only comparable to Budapest, the cost of homes there almost doubled in 12 years.

Cost per square meter in big cities

Debrecen and Győr has had the greatest price hike while Miskolc remained affordable

under 20K

200 - 300K

300 - 400K

above 400K

forint

2016

2014

2006

2018

Debrecen

315K

cost per square meter: 181K forint

Szeged

146K

264K

Miskolc

168K

130K

Pécs

173K

240K

Győr

176K

318K

source: KSH ingatlanadattár

Cost per square meter in big cities

under 200K

200 - 300K

300 - 400K

above 400K

forint

2006

2018

Debrecen

181K forint

315K

cost per square meter:

Szeged

146K

264K

Miskolc

130K

168K

Pécs

173K

240K

Győr

318K

176K

source: KSH ingatlanadattár

Of course, this process was even more dramatic in Budapest; Cheap properties have all but disappeared in the capital during the past decade, along with the opportunity for self-owned homes for many individuals. In 2006, the average price per square meter was below the 250 000 Forint mark in most of Budapest, but by 2018, those low prices became extremely rare, and all of downtown Budapest skyrocketed to the 500 000 - 1 000 000 Forint (~€1500-€3000) category. But there are more and more homes going for even higher prices, most of which are in the V. district, and based on the average prices, the most expensive address in Hungary is also there - Dorottya street, situated between Vörösmarty and Széchenyi squares.

Skyrocketing property prices in Budapest

Since 2006 the average cost per square meter has more then doubled

under 250K

250K - 500K

500 - 750K

750K - 1M

over 1M

forint*

2014

2016

2006

2015

2010

2018

2017

Average square meter cost: 242K

512K

Cheap housing options are vanishing as luxury neighborhoods are multiplying

over 500K

under 250K

*1000 EUR ~ 330K forint

Average cost per square meter by streets based on sale. source: KSH ingatlanadattár

Skyrocketing property prices in Budapest

250 - 500K

750K - 1M

under 250K

500 - 750K

over 1M

2006

2010

2015

2016

2017

2018

The average cost per

square meter in 2006

was 242K forint, which

has more than doubled

to 512K by 2018.

Cheap housing options are vanishing as

luxury neighborhoods are multiplying

under 250K

over 500K

2006

2010

2015

2016

2017

2018

source: KSH ingatlanadattár

Prices significantly increased everywhere though, but proportions were not generally the same everywhere. In some streets, buying homes in the mid-2000s turned out to be an extremely lucrative deal for investors, but even for private individuals, since prices have tripled, or even quadrupled in a little over a decade. Palotanegyed, the VIII. district neighbourhood on the Western side of Budapest's Grand Boulevard and the similarly located party district of the VII. saw prices drastically explode, however, the demand there is not so much generated by home-owners but investors looking for short-term rentals, but some of the more infamous streets of the VIII. district also managed to increase their prices. The figures show that reconstructions of public spaces greatly increased the value of the nearby real estate, for instance, turning Lövőház street in the II. district into a pedestrian zone quadrupled the prices of homes even in nearby Fény street.

Streets and squares of Budapest with the greatest price hike 2006-2018

Cost per square meter at least tripled

or more then quadrupled.

Taksony u.

Bogár u.

Attila u.

Ganz u.

Fény u.

Balassi Bálint u.

Epres sor

Jókai u.

Matróz u.

Babér u.

Lövölde tér

Vadász u.

Iskola u.

Lovag u.

Vécsey u.

Kerékgyártó u.

Bodor u.

Bekecs u.

Josikai u.

Garibaldi u.

Szinva u.

Riadó u.

Bethlen G. tér

Lázár u.

János u.

Jerney u.

Dalszínház u.

Október 6. u.

Ordas út

Szövetség u.

Bem rkprt.u.

Sólyom u.

Sas utca

Baross tér

Klauzál tér

Osvát u.

József A. u.

Kozma u.

Kaptárkő u.

Klauzál u.

Dorottya u.

Rumbach S. u.

Móricz Zs. u.

Nyár u.

Vőfély u.

Bécsi u.

Sárrét u.

Ferenc u.

Somogyi B. u.

Gyulai P. u.

Szarvas u.

Puskin u.

Karácsony S. u.

Bródy S. u.

Déri M. u.

Dankó u.

Kisfaludy u.

Kecskeméti u.

Szélső u.

Sörház u.

Szigetvár u.

Mária u.

Vámház krt.

Kisfaludy u.

Bakáts tér

Average cost of sq. meter based on sales from 2006 to 2018. Streets where at

least three sales took place in both years.

source: KSH ingatlanadattár

Streets and squares of Budapest with the

greatest price hike 2006-2018

Cost per square meter at least tripled

or more then quadrupled.

Ambrus u.

Taksony u.

Bogár u.

Ganz.

Balassi B.

Fény

Jókai

Lövölde tér

Vadász

Iskola

Garibaldi

Josikai

Szinva

Bethlen tér

Lázár

Dalszínház u.

Október 6.

Szövetség

Bem rkprt.

Sas

Baross tér

Klauzál tér

Osvát

József A.

Klauzál

Dorottya

Rumbach

Nyár

Bécsi

Somogyi B.

Gyulai P.

Puskin

Déri M. u.

Karácsony S.

Bródy S. u.

Dankó

Kecskeméti

Sörház

Mária

Vámház krt.

Kisfaludy

Bakáts tér

Attila

Epres sor

Babér

Kerékgyártó

Riadó

Bekecs

János

Jerney

Ordas út

Sólyom u.

Kozma

Kaptárkő

Móricz Zs.

Vőfély

Ferenc

Szarvas

Kisfaludy

Szélső

Average cost of sq. meter based on sales from

2006 to 2018. Streets where at least three

sales took place in both years.

source: KSH ingatlanadattár

But most streets where current prices are four times as much as they were in 2006 are located in the outer districts of Budapest, but that is not a surprise - the average price hike there was the highest in Hungary during the past decade. With that said, homes there are still cheaper than in the city centre.

The prices of socialist-era prefabricated homes also went up during this period, Budapest shows this trend nicely. Prefabs were traditionally cheaper than brick-walled housing, but the difference seems to be slowly melting away, by last summer, that rule of thumb became more-or-less obsolete.

Price increase of prefabs 2006-2018

Property prices has at least doubled,

or more than tripled in large-panel prefabricated building blocks

Petneházy utca

Szőlő utca

Frankó utca

Somfa köz

Regős utca

Etele út

Ady Endre út

Average cost of sq. meter based on sales from 2006 to 2018. Streets where at

least three sales took place in both years.

source: KSH ingatlanadattár

Price increase of prefabs 2006-2018

Property prices has at least doubled or more than tripled

in large-panel prefabricated building blocks

Szőlő utca

Petneházy utca

Frankó utca

Regős utca

Somfa köz

Etele út

Ady Endre út

Average cost of sq. meter based on sales from

2006 to 2018. Streets where at least three

sales took place in both years.

source: KSH ingatlanadattár

Prefabs' average rate of price growth exceeded that of traditional brick-walled homes, as you could see, flats in many prefab neighbourhoods have tripled their prices by 2018 since 2006. Prefab homes located near green areas were the most popular: owners of II., III., XI., and XXII. district flats have made huge profits, but the XIX. district was not far behind either. Analysts say that the reason behind the phenomenon is that many buyers yearning for brick-walled homes were simply priced out from them, driving the demand for prefab homes.

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