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Retire in Hungary?

Retire in Hungary?

Old Jun 17th 2010, 3:35 am
  #1  
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Default Retire in Hungary?

My wife and I are looking forward to retiring to Europe (from the US) and have spent the past couple of months in research on Hungary, and other places. We are looking for a location that has:

1. Centralized in Europe to allow us to travel and explore without the 7000+ km distance.
2. Quite lifestyle with many outdoor activities (hiking, riding etc)
3. Location where our retirement $$ can go far (Spain, Northern Italy, Germany, France etc are not as $$ friendly)
4. Weather that has a Winter, Fall, Spring and Sumer.


We have a few years to prepare for our escape from the US. The last 2 years have had vacations to Europe and we will try to plan our next trip with a side trip to Hungary. Both of us have many questions and I will post them later (lots have already been answered in this forum).


Michael and Sandy
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Old Jun 17th 2010, 10:45 am
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Default Re: Retire in Hungary?

Hi again, before we moved to Hungary, we researched several other countries and spent 3 months "trying out" Bulgaria.

As it's way past my bedtime I will write a longer post tomorrow on why we choose Hungary and where we would avoid.
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Old Jun 19th 2010, 2:43 am
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Default Re: Retire in Hungary?

hi gaflack
like rural we did a lot of looking first but our main reason for the move to hungary was the climate as yes it does have four seasons.
you will not be alone as there are 3.8% of the population who are from the USA the highest after hungarians.
you migh have discovered this site but hope it might help you

http://www.transitionsabroad.com/lis..._hungary.shtml
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Old Jun 20th 2010, 8:10 am
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Default Re: Retire in Hungary?

Hi again, hope this helps you:

our first choice would have been France, you can still find reasonably priced property but the cost of living is higher; ditto Italy and Spain.
Bulgaria and Romania are cheap but the infrastructure, health care and judicial system are severely lacking.
Croatia & Montenegro are still affordable and the cost of living is reasonable but again, health care wasn't adequate for our requirements and we heard corruption was still an issue.
Slovenia is lovely but house prices were creeping up and the cost of living a bit higher than Hungary.
Austria was too expensive.
Gozo (next to Malta), rental property and cost of living affordable but property expensive to buy.
We didn't consider anywhere North of Hungary.
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Old Jun 23rd 2010, 3:19 am
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Default Re: Retire in Hungary?

So far it has been hard to find information about Health coverage. Any personal stories would be helpful. The wife and I will be early 60's when we retire and both in good health. Of course the wonderful US health system does nothing for anyone who is outside of US borders (and little for those in the US ).

We will both be looking for basic health care and insurance on any catastrophic issues that might happen (wife has enough and cracks my head with a frying pan ). I have seen posts on prices that are all over the place, from $60 to $600 US per month per person.

Any information would be great.

Michael and Sandy
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Old Jul 31st 2010, 5:08 am
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Default Re: Retire in Hungary?

Hi, My wife and I retired in September to Balatonfured from Virhinia (DC metro area). We are very happy and have had more or less excelent experiences. Early on we had problems with contractors but have since hired a "foreman" who speaks English and acts as our agent for pretty much anything. Health coverage for us is particularly trick as i am also retired military and stuck with Tricare overseas. We plan to obtain Hungarian insurance which runs about $25 a month per person although it isn't particularly useful it does get you into the door. Unfortunately, bribes to the doctors are the norm here and you typically need to bribe about 10% of the total fee. However, they are kind enough to add it to the invoice so I get re-imbursed for that as well. Despite all of this medical treatment is very inexpensive. My wife's sister was visiting for the Summer who has congestive heart failure and we needed to take her to the Emergency Room in Veszprem. She had an IV, drugs, chest X-ray and a full gamut of lab tests which all came to a total of less than $100 which wasn't even worth filing against her travel insurance. We have found Hungary to be a wonderful place and purchased a beautiful home here of about 3,000 s.f. which cost $275K. We renovated it for another $100K and have a perfect home here. There isn't any property tax per se (there is a small tax to the city) which makes it excellent as well. Utilities are very high and run approximately 5 times as much as in Virginia. Gasoline is also high at roughly $9 per gallon. Beware of car registration and import duties. We brought over a Toyota Prious and had a huge hassle getting it registered. But, eventually we waded through the process and got our deposit of 5,000 euros back eventually and paid a registration fee of 110,000 forints which is the lowest rate. We had planned to bring our Acura TL but it would have cost us $21K (yes in dollars) to get it registered as it has a huge engine which put it into the highest rate. We also considered France but decided on Hungary as the are accepting of Foreigners (unlike France) at least here in Balatonfured where about 1/2 of the residents are not Hungarians.
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