(Provided by 'The Times Online' from "Why Buy in Bulgaria")
Low Property Prices, beautiful countryside, historic towns and unchanged rural traditions. The cost of living is also surprisingly low and makes Turkey look expensive. The food is good and a meal out costs Ј5, a beer 50p, and an espresso 15p. And if Bulgaria joins the EU, there is the possibility that property prices could take off, rewarding early buyers.
What are the costs?
Both buyers and sellers pay commission to estate agents, with charges ranging from 3 per cent to 6 per cent. There is also a form of stamp duty equivalent to about 2 per cent of the price. Balkan Ski Chalets charges 10 per cent of the purchase price, which includes agency fees, legal and translation costs but excludes stamp duty and survey costs. For properties with land the charge is 12 per cent, which covers the cost of setting up a company to buy the property. Many agents levie a 10 per cent charge to cover fees and legal costs, with a minimum charge of Ј1,500.
...Triumph Village is located on the Black Sea coast (150 meters from the beach), at the foot of the wooded Stara Planina Mountain in St Vlas, Bulgaria...
What is on the market?
Properties come in a wide variety of prices. For anyone seeking rustic solitude a four-room house near Veliko Turnovo, in need of work and without water, could be yours for Ј5,000. Also available are assorted seafront properties - a new villa at Varna, where there is an airport, will cost you Ј49,000. A luxury, architect-designed seafront villa with a heated pool is offered at Ј172,000. For skiing enthusiasts there are new flats in Bansko from Ј12,000, while a five-bedroom house in the town is priced at Ј46,000. Flats in the new golf resort on the Black Sea are priced from Ј30,000.
What do the Bulgarians think of foreign buyers?
It would be understandable if Bulgarians have mixed views about overseas buyers regarding the country as good for cheap property. Houses for Ј20,000 may look like a bargain to UK buyers, but it is worth remembering that the average annual income in Bulgaria is about Ј1,000. Agents say that most people, however, welcome the foreign investment.
There are direct flights year round from the UK to Sofia, with the Black Sea served by airports at Varna and Burgas. Out of season, however, when the charter flights from the UK are not operating, visitors to the Black Sea will need to fly to Sofia and take an internal flight. For the best offers on flights you should try tour operators that offer flight-only deals, such as Profi Tours Ltd.
More information on Bulgaria...
Visitors from the UK are automatically granted a visa for a visit of up to 30 days. For longer visits you will need to arrange a visa extension. For information on visas and tourism in Bulgaria call the Bulgarian Embassy in London on 020-7584 9433 or visit the Bulgarian Embassy's Website
Bulgaria property for sale-
"Buying Property in Bulgaria"
Until recently there was a further limitation on the purchases of immovables by foreign persons - the obligation on the part of the respective foreign person to obtain the permission of the Council of Ministers (the Government) of the Republic of Bulgaria or other administration organs authorised to decide on such requests, if the property is situated within border areas or other territories under special regime for reasons of national security. Following the latest amendments to the Foreign Investment Act, as of May 2004 this limitation is no longer in place.
According to the Bulgarian law, embodied in the Constitution of the Republic of Bulgaria, the Property Act and the Foreign Investments Act foreign physical and also juridical persons such as companies cannot acquire the ownership of land in the country. However, they are permitted to acquire the ownership of houses or flats and limited ownership rights with regard to every kind of immovable property situated in Bulgaria. Under the heading limited ownership rights the Bulgarian law understands the rights of use (usus), the right to build a house on a piece of land (superficie) and the servitudes (e.g., the right of access to the street through another person's piece of land).
With the view to establish an enhanced protection of foreign investments in Bulgaria there is a special regime with respect of the expropriation of foreign persons. Expropriation of the immovable property of foreign persons is only legal, whenever it is done by an Act of Parliament, passed because of extraordinary needs of the government, which cannot be satisfied otherwise. In addition to that the foreign person has to be provided with a replacement of his immovable property before the expropriation takes place. The replacement has to be equal in market value to the replaced property and has to be located close to it. The owner may give his consent that the replacement would be located elsewhere or that he would be awarded money instead of a replacement property.
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