Scam in apartment rental you must know in Budapest

While searching for an apartment in Budapest,you must be aware of possible scams that can happen.
Normally,people search for apartment through websites which i shared in my previous posts.On the websites like and, some flats will have address and pictures to give you a better idea about the property. However some do not have any pictures.

If the apartment have pictures,following possibilities can happen.

The pictures posted on the apartment are taken a long time ago when it was new,whereas current status of the apartment is a bit different.May be the furniture is changed or the equipment in the apartment are not in the same condition.

In addition,While you made a list of apartments,once you go through the selected flats you will notice that there are certain flats which have a very good rental price package compared to the other apartments and you would think that you will get a rental agreement right away once you are at the apartment,even if there are certain items less than those which are posted on the advertisement in website.

In such cases,where apartment rental price is very less compared to the general price you got through the browsing experience, these might be fake ads.In such cases,when you reach the desired place after you have booked an appointment with the agent, the agent will tell you that, the apartment just was booked by someone else,and no more available. He will show you another apartment close to the place where you meet and that would be a shitty apartment with a very higher rent.

So in this way the agents will trick you to book a apartment with a higher rental price compared to the original price.In this case, the best advice is to not to make a quick decision, if you are suspicious about the rent compared to the apartment value.

The best way is to look for an apartment ad which is posting the market value of the rental price,and once you find the same apartment as in picture,then you can try to negotiate the rental price by convincing the owner that you plan to stay for long and you would like some reduction in the rent. Sometimes you can get discount of 5000 to 10000 HUF, depending upon your luck.

Grocery and cosmetics Stores chains in Budapest

Being on the eastern European region, with devalued currency, grocery prices in Hungary are quite comparable to Western EU countries.However, there is possibility that each grocery store has certain discounts in various parts of months.Major Grocery store in Budapest are the following.

Penny Market

In terms of cosmetics, major international brands are

DM - dm-drogerie markt

Out of the available grocery stores, each store has a monthly magazine which mentions the discount it will have in the upcoming month.In certain areas, these magazines are delivered to the building mail boxes, and allow the users to check the discount offers.

On the other hand, these stores also have online websites,where it is possible to check the discounts in upcoming months.Only issue is that every website is in Hungarian, which is a language even google translate  cannot handle correctly.

SPAR,TESCO,and DM stores definitely have their loyalty cards,which have a different usage style which I will explain in my future posts,however, these are quite useful ones. For Rossman store in Hungary, there is a baby card,which can allow you to have a discount on baby products.

Quality of products in Hungary is quite varying depending upon which store you are buying the products.The main reason is that, most products in grocery stores are made for eastern European region.Therefore,each product you buy has Slovenian,Slovakian,Czech,Hungarian,Bulgarian,polish written on it. From the users experience, it has been observed that, products with eastern European languages written on it do not have the same quality as its found in the Western European countries.

Should I rent an apartment in Budapest through a real estate agency

Due to lower prices for apartments in Budapest compared to western European cities, Budapest got a heavy investment in 2000-2006 period.Most of these were investors from Western EU countries who would invest in newly build apartments,and through a 3rd part agency (real estate company),would rent it out to foreigners coming to Budapest for jobs.

The investors would handover the power of attorney to these real estate agencies who will post high rents. But that is not the only drawback for a tenant. The apartments were normally well equipped but with IKEA items.Instead of proper beds, these were sofa cum beds.These companies would count each and every item during the handover.i.e from counting of spoons,plates, cups and mugs to curtains,blankets,pillows. In addition, they had a very strict criteria for rent transfer,i.e. if the rent is not transferred before 5th of each month, there would be a certain fine to be paid by tenant.

In case of any issues in the apartment, it was almost impossible to ask for resolution of the problem because there was no one dedicated to solve the issues.

In terms of utilities cost, they would charge a hefty amount which is way more than the average utilities cost in Budapest, and promise to return it after the contract is ended. However, if you break your rental agreement before the deadline, then you had to lose all you initial deposit.

Another disadvantage of renting apartment from real estate agencies was that they would take picture of the floor and find any scratch after you leave the apartment,would charge you extra money.

On leaving the apartment, aside from calculating the item quantities, they would check the Owen,windows and status of stoves,and if any of them had a minor issue, you would be charged heavily by the real estate agency.

There is also no possibility to avoid the deposit of last 2 months before you leave the apartment if your rental agreement is with the real estate agency in Budapest.

Based upon these tough checks, its better to rent apartment from the owners directly if you want to rent an apartment in Budapest.

Important facts you must know before living in older building in Budapest

Older buildings in Budapest built in 1900 are very scary in certain districts from the outside,however from the inside, the apartments may be well renovated.Despite the renovation,older buildings in budapest still have heating, sanitary and gas problems. Heating may stop function,if the heating system is old,boilers will also have frequent problems with some components or leaking. As older buildings have gas, sometimes gas leakage can also happen(make sure your owner gets it repaired if you notice).Sanitation problem are also arising frequently in toilets for older buildings in Budapest. All the older buildings in Budapest have more probability of getting extreme temperatures,if the windows are not repaired,despite having double windows (you must ask your owner to use silicon rubber in windows if he/she does not want to install new windows).

One of the important factor in choosing an older building in Budapest is to check if it has a lift in it.Since many older building dont have lift. In certain cases,lifts are installed but they are quite old and slow to operate.Due to bad insulation, older building in budapest will consume more heating and your gas or electricity bill will be trippled compared to normal summers.

Websites for finding an apartment in Budapest

Here is a list of websites,which can be used for apartment search in Hungary.

If you are a foreigner searching for apartment rentals in Budapest,it can happen that you just see the English rental websites which may tell very higher prices for rentals in Budapest. The same happen with me and a couple of friends where I was surprised to see high rental prices in Budapest,therefore, during my initial days at Budapest,I had asked my colleagues about online websites which are operated by locals to have a right idea about rental prices in Budapest. and are two websites which have the largest database of apartments/accommodations  for rental and sale in Hungary.Make sure you have selected the correct city when searching for the apartment. 

Please note that, anybody can post ads on these websites for apartments in Budapest,therefore,its your responsibility to check whether the advertisement for apartment rental is valid or not.