Investment options in the Hungarian Golden Visa program

February 5, 2024

The Hungarian golden visa program is expected to go live in July 2024. It will offer three options to investors who wish to obtain 10-year EU residency for themselves and their immediate family members. While not every detail is defined just yet, we already know much.

Hungarian golden visa options

If you are interested in obtaining Hungarian residency for 10 years, which will let you and your closest family members, meaning wife and underage children live, do business, and enter employment in Hungary, you have the following options:

  • EUR 250,000:  purchase of bonds issued by a real estate fund registered by the Hungarian National Bank (MNB)
  • EUR 500,000:  purchase of Hungarian residential real estate
  • EUR 1 million: donation to a designated educational or cultural institution

Whichever option you choose, there is no minimum stay requirement attached to it. This means that you will be able to renew your residency upon expiry even if you do not spend the majority of your time in Hungary.

Moreover, you will become not become a tax resident automatically, unless you stay more than half of the time in Hungary (defined as more than 90 days in any 183-day period). Of course, if you do generate income in Hungary, that will be taxed in Hungary.

The law has empowered the government to come up with the details for each option. While we are waiting for those details, we already have the following information about the investment options of the Hungarian golden visa program.

1. EUR 250,000 investment in a real estate fund

The following conditions apply to investments in a real estate fund:

  • The fund must be one registered by the Hungarian National Bank
  • At least 40% of the portfolio must consist of residential real estate projects realized in Hungary
  • The investor must hold onto the bonds for at least 5 years

The investor is allowed to sell their bonds after 5 years. However, if they wish to renew their guest investor residency after 10 years, by that time they must make another investment that matches the requirements.

2. EUR 500,000 investment in residential real estate

The following conditions apply to investments in residential real estate:

  • Strictly residential (so commercial or industrial real estate is not allowed)
  • Must be uncontested and free of any claims (including mortgage)
  • The property cannot be sold for 5 years, and this must be indicated on the title deed
  • Either the investor must be the sole owner or they can share ownership with one or more of the family members applying together (but with no one else outside the family group)
  • If you are not planning to live in this property, you are allowed to rent it out

The rules pertaining to property purchase in Hungary apply. This means that as a third-country national, you will need to ask the local municipality for a purchase permit, and pay a 4% property transfer tax. If you decide to rent the property out, you will need to pay taxes on that income too.

The investor is allowed to sell the property after 5 years. However, if they wish to renew their guest investor residency after 10 years, by that time they must purchase another piece of residential real estate that matches the requirements.

3. EUR 1 million donation

The following conditions apply to donation made for a designated educational or cultural institution:

  • It must be an institution managed by a public foundation (this is a specific category of institutions in Hungary)
  • The institution must be one of higher education that is involved in scientific research or artistic activities as well as education
  • The list of specific institutions is to be published later

Since this is a donation, reimbursement is not possible. If the investor wishes to renew their guest investor residency after 10 years, they can do so without submitting any additional proof that conditions are still met.

Stay on top of the news with Helpers

Helpers is dedicated to offering up-to-date information about all things related to living, working, and doing business in Hungary. Naturally, this includes following the developments around the Hungarian golden visa. As soon as we know more, we will share the information with you.

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