In terms of sales, 2021 was the last strong year for the domestic housing market in Hungary. That year, the number of homes sold in a year reached the 150,000 level seen before the epidemic. Last year was already weaker than that. What is more, this year promises to be even weaker.
Hungarian economic news portal Portfolio looked at the differences in the number of sales per 10,000 inhabitants across the country for 2021, based on the TÉR-KÉP collection published by the Hungarian Central Statistical Office (Központi Statisztikai Hivatal, KSH).
By 2021, the number of second-hand housing transactions in the capital and some counties significantly exceeded pre-epidemic levels, Portfolio reports. In Pest county, however, sales were significantly below the two-year average. This is reflected in the much lower than average sales per 10,000 inhabitants in the districts.
As shown in the graph above, Pest county had a relatively low number of transactions in 2021. According to Portfolio, on the one hand, this can be explained by the fact that in 2020, more people decided to move to the agglomeration. The main reason for this was the restrictions due to the COVID pandemic. On the other hand, the number of investors increased again in 2021, which also did not target the agglomeration municipalities.
This is confirmed by the highlighted map of Budapest, where the darker colour of the inner city districts indicates greater buyer interest, much of which may have been from investors buying for rental purposes. In addition, the dark green colour of the western basin of Lake Balaton is also not surprising, as there was still a strong demand for apartments for sale around the lake in 2021.
Although the above graph shows the number of sales in relation to the population, it is also worth discussing the evolution of the housing stock, Portfolio writes. The national housing stock has recently reached 4.5 million. This means that on average, just over two people live in a dwelling in Hungary.
In Budapest, the number has been below two for several years. Meanwhile, in rural areas, it is highest in Pest and some north-eastern counties, thanks to a higher proportion of families. Thus, in the most vibrant parts of the country in terms of the housing market, 4-6 percent of the housing stock changed hands in 2021, while in the lower-traffic areas, the figure was only between 1-2 percent.
Source: Portfolio.hu, KSH