As of this past August, 114,000 families had applied for the family allowance, Novák said, with 50% of recipients having two children and 37% having three.
In terms of how the CSOK subsidies are being spent, the funds have been used in the purchase of nine out of 10 new homes and six out of 10 resale homes. A full two-thirds of recipients have used their subsidies for a new home, while one-third have bought previously owned houses. An increasing number of couples are also taking advantage of discounted loans that were initiated in July for the purchase of used homes.
Hungary launched its Home Purchase Subsidy Scheme for Families (CSOK) back in 2015, and more and more families are benefitting from the aid to acquire or build a home. The program is part of the Hungarian government’s plan to help create an environment in which couples can more easily raise a family and have the support to do so. This has been in line with Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s commitment to families, not migration.
Secretary Novák noted that some 60,000 families have actively taken advantage of various other opportunities from Hungary’s Family Protection Action Plan (of which CSOK is a part), the government’s initiative to support families and thus encourage them to live and work in Hungary. Other support mechanisms include preferential loans for women when first married, lifetime income-tax exemptions for women with four or more children, and a fee for grandparents caring for their grandchildren.
“We would like for Hungary, sooner or later, to truly be a family-friendly country,” said Katalin Novák.
Families aren’t the only beneficiaries of the government’s actions. The Ministry of Economy has also noted that CSOK would help boost the country’s GDP due to increased construction activity. By the summer of 2018, the number of completed homes had increased by 30 percent in a single year.