Hungary is behind all V4 countries regarding all factors of housing poverty because real estate prices increase faster than the salaries and even though the government gives a significant amount of money on housing it mostly goes to the already richer. As a result, millions, mostly young people have to live in crowded and bad quality flats.
Habitat for Humanity published its annual report a couple of days ago about the Hungarian housing poverty. According to them, millions of Hungarians have huge debts on their flats while those who would like to rent a unit have to pay horrible prices – 444.hu says.
To make matters worse, the situation is better in all other V4 countries (Slovakia, Poland, the Czech Republic). 444.hu analysed 8 factors regarding housing in these four countries.
1. Flat prices and salaries: in Hungary real estate prices grew by 24-32 pc but
salaries increased only by 8 pc.
According to an international survey from 2018, real estate prices grew most in Budapest in the whole world. The situation is the same regarding the cost of rent, which increased by 13 pc between 2015 and 2018 while this rate in Slovakia is a few pc. Interestingly, in Hungary, more and more people choose to live in rented flats instead of buying one.
Furthermore, the costs of living are also skyrocketing in Hungary. Global survey says that these costs are bearable until their amount remains below 40 pc of the total income of the households. However,
mostly poor people tend to exceed this housing cost overburden limit
in Hungary with which the country is first not only among the V4 countries but also among the member states of the European Union.
In Hungary, 14 pc of the households cannot pay their utilities in time which is the highest rate in the region. For example, in the Czech Republic, this rate is only two pc. Based on 2018 data, 1 million Hungarians were close to losing their electricity supply because they could not afford to pay the electricity bill. And this is why, despite winter evictions moratorium, there are more than eight evictions each day.
Furthermore, the government’s measures aiming to reduce the cost of utilities did not reach the more deprived groups of society. The price of lumber with which they heat rose by ten pc in 2018 while people have to pay only 1.5 pc more for gas.
Hungary is first in the EU regarding housing deprivation, as well. The EU average is five pc, but in Hungary, this number is 15 pc while Poland was able to reduce it from 25 to 9 pc in only ten years. This problem affects mostly young people;
62 pc of them have to live in overcrowded flats.
24 pc of the Hungarians live in houses that need to be urgently renewed. Meanwhile, V4 countries are in a better position in this respect than even the EU average. In Slovakia, for example, half of the blocks of flats were modernised, and so they become more energy efficient. In Slovakia, there is a government-supported program that helps the modernisation of the apartments, but in Hungary, there is no such program even though almost 80 pc of the flats do not meet current technical and energy requirements.
Thanks to the government’s family support system inequalities just grow – says the report. The problem is that in Hungary
there are no state-supported programs to increase the rental stock.
The opposite is true, for example, in Poland.
Habitat says that it was a wrong decision to end state support of the home savings support system and they also criticised the government’s plans to privatise 30 thousand state-owned flats.