Where to buy a house in Hungary?
Hungary offers a variety of attractive places where you could consider emigrating there. Basically, a distinction can be made between the city and the country, as well as different regions of Hungary. The article gives an overview of decision criteria as well as cities and regions in Hungary.
When choosing a region or city in Hungary, several factors should be considered:
Quality of life:
Different regions have different quality of life characteristics. Do you prefer more of a big city atmosphere, a quiet rural life, or something in between? Also consider infrastructure and thus the availability of facilities such as health care, educational institutions and recreational activities. Investigate the availability of transportation links, public transit, road networks, internet connectivity and other infrastructure facilities that are important to you. Larger cities often have better infrastructure compared to more rural areas. Health care in Hungary is generally well developed and provides an adequate level of medical care. However, there are significant differences in the countryside and in larger cities, as well as between private clinics and state hospitals. If you want to be safe with medical care,l a house in Hungary on the Austrian border is a good choice.
The climate in Hungary varies slightly from region to region. Southern regions such as Pécs tend to have a warmer Mediterranean climate, while northern regions can have cooler winters and milder summers. Consider your preferences regarding climate and how it might affect your lifestyle.
Budapest tends to offer the widest range of jobs and career opportunities, especially in the service sector. Other cities such as Debrecen and Győr also have growing economic sectors, while in more rural areas employment opportunities can be more limited and Hungarian language skills are definitely necessary. In regions with many German emigrants, German craftsmen or service companies have also already established themselves. With good performance, entrepreneurial activities are more likely to succeed here.
Community and cultural opportunities:
Consider whether you want an international community, cultural events, museums, theaters or other recreational opportunities nearby. Do you like more of a German community or is it your desire to integrate with your Hungarian neighbors. Budapest offers a rich cultural scene, while smaller towns and rural areas can often have a closer sense of community.
Cost of living:
The cost of living can vary depending on the region. Budapest tends to be more expensive than other cities and rural areas. A house in Hungary in the flat countryside is many times cheaper than in Budapest or Lake Balaton. Consider your budget and the cost of housing, transportation, food and other expenses in the region you want to visit. The cost of living in Hungary can be easily compared via Numbeo.1
Let's look at the big cities.
The capital of Hungary is a vibrant metropolis with a rich culture, beautiful architecture, historical sites and a lively nightlife. Budapest also offers good employment opportunities and a diverse international community. But Budapest is also the most expensive option in Hungary looking especially at real estate prices, food costs and entertainment.
As the second largest city in Hungary, Debrecen offers a good quality of life, lower cost of living compared to Budapest, and a pleasant climate. Real estate prices are generally cheaper than in Budapest. The city also has a strong educational offer with several prestigious universities. The city offers a good balance between quality of life and cost.
This charming city in southwestern Hungary is known for its historic architecture, cultural events and Mediterranean flair. Pécs also offers a lively arts scene and a pleasant living environment. Pécs also has a moderate cost of living compared to Budapest. Real estate prices are affordable, and the cost of food and other expenses is usually lower.
Győr is located near the border with Austria and Slovakia. The city has a rich history, beautiful Baroque architecture and a vibrant cultural scene. Győr is also an important industrial center and offers good employment opportunities. Győr is somewhat closer to Budapest and therefore has a slightly higher cost of living than Debrecen or Pécs. However, costs are still moderate compared to Budapest. Fast connections to Budapest, Bratislava and Vienna may also be a selection criterion.
This small city near the Austrian border is known for its well-preserved old town, historic buildings and wine production. Sopron offers a quiet and relaxed atmosphere. It is just a stone's throw to Austria. Sopron also has a moderate cost of living. Real estate prices are slightly higher than the national average due to its proximity to Austria, but they are still more moderate than in Budapest. The cost of food and other expenses is generally lower than in Budapest.
Which regions outside large cities can be roughly characterized2:
If you have a preference for nature and leisure activities, the Balaton region could be your destination. Lake Balaton (Plattensee) is the largest lake in Central Europe and offers a picturesque landscape, water sports opportunities and a lively tourist as well as supply infrastructure. The dry continental climate already prevails with microclimatic zones influenced by the lake. The Balaton region is still the most popular emigration destination. Integration is easy even without Hungarian language skills, as many service providers speak German or English due to the tourist orientation. A German service community has also formed over the years, and the trend is increasing. Nowhere is the density of German-speaking real estate agents higher. However, the prices for a house on Lake Balaton have also risen sharply in recent years. The cost of living in the Balaton region can vary depending on the location. Popular tourist spots can be more expensive in high season, while more rural areas around Lake Balaton generally have a lower cost of living.
Northern Hungarian Central Mountains (Északi-középhegység):
This region is scenically beautiful with vast forests and a certain primitiveness. However, it is also the coldest and rainiest area in Hungary, although the wine region around Eger would suggest otherwise. In recent years, German automotive suppliers in particular have expanded industrial capacity and thus jobs in the region. Real estate prices are inexpensive to moderate.
Here we are in the westernmost part of Hungary, which is also one of the coolest and rainiest areas in the highlands. A large part of the population is concentrated in Sopron and Köszeg. In addition, many small and dwarf villages can be found. Except for the cities, the real estate prices are moderate.
Transdanubian hills (Dunántúli-dombsá):
The region begins already south of the Balaton. Most of the region is covered with hills. Both the more humid oceanic and the warm Mediterranean influences prevail, so the climate is more balanced than the national average. Precipitation is higher in the western half of the Transdanubian Mountains, decreasing towards the east, averaging 650 mm per year. Good infrastructures can be found in the bigger towns like Pécs, Kaposvár or Siófok. In addition, especially in the southern areas, there may be a lack of infrastructure accustomed to Western Europe. Except for the larger cities with moderate real estate prices, prices are rather low, except for the Balaton area.
Hungarian low mountain range of Transdanubia (Dunántúli-középhegység):
The region lies between Lake Balaton and the Little Plain and is characterized by hills and forests with the highest mountain Pilis-tetö, which is 757m high. The climate is slightly cooler and more humid than in surrounding regions. The low mountain range is located at the interface of humid and dry continental climate. On the southern slope of the mountain, the angle of incidence of the sun's rays is greater and the amount of precipitation is less (600-800 mm per year). On the north-western side the oceanic influence prevails, on the south-western side the Mediterranean influence prevails. Lake Balaton is close and the larger cities offer adequate infrastructures that can be reached in a short time. The closer to Lake Balaton, the more expensive real estate prices become, but in the wider area they are moderate.
Great Hungarian Plain (Alföld):
The Great Plain is located in the Carpathian Basin and is one of the areas where Hungary lost large parts to Ukraine, Romania, Serbia and Croatia under the Trianon Treaty. As the name indicates, it is flat land with the highest elevation of 183m. Danube and Tisza rivers as well as some smaller lakes characterize the lowlands. For nature lovers, the regions around Danube and Tisza can be desirable with bird paradises and hunting grounds. However, summers tend to be hot and the infrastructure outside the big cities is weaker than in western Hungary, especially if you move further east or south. Property prices are moderate in the larger cities and low outside.
Small Hungarian Plain (Kisalföld):
Located in the northwestern part of Hungary, the Atlantic influence is greatest here. So the summers are warm and the winters mild, you can expect plenty of wind. Some will say the landscape is flat and boring. However, if you are looking for floodplain landscapes and proximity to the Danube, you will find happiness here. Real estate prices are moderate in the larger cities and low in the countryside.
Of course, the choice of the place of emigration depends on personal preferences, goals and circumstances. It is advisable to visit the regions to get a better impression and decide which one suits you best. My favorites for buying a house in Hungary are definitely the Balaton region and the edge of the Bakony Mountains due to the good infrastructure.
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