Bulgaria is a quiet and largely rural country in South Eastern Europe about the size of England but with a population of about 7 million. For years Bulgaria has been a favoured holiday destination for Eastern Europeans, but only in recent years has it opened its doors to the rest of the world. Its mountains, beaches and old-fashioned rural tranquillity offer a glimpse of Europe which has long since disappeared under the noise of traffic and concrete in Western Europe. At the same time the modern facilities in the biggest cities do not differ much from what the other European capitals have to offer and department stores such as Marks&Spencer's and Mothercare have now started operations.
Since the beginning of 2012 citizens of EU countries can buy land for residential purposes. For citizens of all other countries general restrictions apply as written in the Bulgarian legislation. According to the Constitution of Republic of Bulgaria foreigners and foreign companies can buy buildings but not land. The Treaty of Accession of Bulgaria to the EU allows Bulgaria to keep the ban on EU individuals and companies to buy forests and agricultural land until 2014.
The most common method for foreigners of non-EU countries wishing to own property with land is to register a Bulgarian company which they own and then the company buys the the land. We assist with this company registration. It takes about one week to register a Bulgarian company. The process of registering the company takes place in parallel to us carrying out the legal checks on a property should you choose one.
The global credit crunch affects the Bulgarian economy as it depends on its exports and on foreign direct investments in economy's real sector. Naturally real estate sales and prices are also affected. Growing until the autumn of 2008 the following months the market has slowed down and as a result prices started to decrease. The changes in the market might be good for people who are looking to buy for their own use as the supply is good and sellers are likely to accept lower offers.
Direct charter flights to the Black Sea Coast (Varna and Burgas) are generally available from April until early October from many European domestic airports. Please check with your local agent for up to date information about flights. In the winter season there are charter flights available to Sofia and Plovdiv which are near the skiing areas.
Our advice for clients travelling to the coast in the summer is to book a package deal with a major tour operator, i.e. Thompson, First Choice, etc. Their prices offer excellent value for money and include accommodation. This will allow you to combine a holiday with a bit of house hunting. The same goes for those looking at property in the ski resort during the winter. Those visiting Varna should try and book into the resort located just to the north, i.e. St Konstantine&Elena or the larger resort of Golden Sands. Those travelling to the Bourgas region to visit new and off-plan developments should opt for a package deal in Sunny Beach or the satellite resorts.
For those clients not opting to use a package deal in the summer/winter we can suggest to visit our Inspection Trip page.
Certificate for long-term residency is granted to citizens of EU-member states, who meet one of the following criteria:
1. Employed or self-employed in the Republic of Bulgaria;
2. Have the necessary funds to cover their living costs and those for the other family members and will not rely on the social security system in Bulgaria, and have a health insurance (this criterion has been used most frequently by our clients who wish to reside. It includes retired people);
3. Study in a registered school or university, including one for vocational training, and meet the requirements of point 2.