The Hungarian Central Statistical Office released the price index of the apartment market regarding the fourth quarter of 2020. Surprisingly, regardless of the adverse effects of the pandemic, the annual price index of second-hand dwellings continued to rise in 2020, however, the rate of price increase slowed down significantly: prices rose by only 3.4 percent compared to 2019.
In the first quarter of 2020, prices increased by around 4 percent, then decreased by 3 percent in the second quarter, which was followed by a roughly 4 percent increase in the third quarter. In the fourth quarter, during the second wave of the pandemic, prices slightly decreased again by around 2 percent. For the year 2020 in total, because of the roller coaster during the year, second-hand home prices were only 2 percent higher than in the same period of 2019. Such a low annual price increase was unprecedented since 2015.
Newly built apartments
The prices of new apartments increased by 8 percent in the first quarter, but later growth slowed down. However, prices never fell during the year, seemingly the pandemic did not really affect the market of newly built apartments. Before 2020, price changes for new and second-hand apartments were moving together, however, this changed in the last year: the price of new apartments continued to rise, while the price of second-hand homes came to a halt and fluctuated within a narrow range. When compared to the price level of 2019, the prices of newly built apartments show a 7 percent increase, which suggests that surprisingly newly built apartments are more resilient to the effects of the pandemic than the second-hand market.