Bulgarian Real Estate
Bulgaria is a beautiful and diverse country and is quickly becoming the leading location for real estate investment in Eastern Europe. Following its accession to the EU in January 2007, Bulgaria’s trade barriers have been removed and the country opened up to the European market place. As a result the economy continues to surge; unemployment remains low, interest rates have been dropping and GDP is continuing to grow. The growing economy is making investing in Bulgarian real estate a very popular choice amongst both local and overseas property investors.
The country receives significant & growing levels of foreign direct investment due to the competitive nature of its economy and workforce. Many multinational companies such as Google, Microsoft, Nestle, Nokia and Hewlett Packard have already taken advantage of the country’s positive economic environment, motivated educated labour pool and attractive flat tax of 10% by re-locating to the country. Its flat tax rate of just 10% - introduced in January 2008 - makes Bulgaria one of the most competitive tax locations in the EU and is set to increase FDI even further in future years. These multinational companies are not only buying Bulgarian real estate to accommodate their many office workers but also they are bringing many high skilled senior specialists and managers from abroad. These high worth individuals are also considering Bulgarian real estate for sale as a property investment or simply as a holiday home to enjoy while they are working in Bulgaria.
Membership of the EU means that Bulgaria is currently receiving large amounts of EU Structural Funds and by 2015 expects to receive €11bn in EU funding, resulting in a huge improvement to the country’s infrastructure.
Bulgarian Real Estate for sale
The Bulgarian real estate market has seen dramatic changes over the last 10 years. In the run-up to joining the EU in 2007 Bulgaria real estate became very popular as an overseas property investment. This resulted in increasing prices and led to significant over development in certain areas, most notably along the Black Sea coastline and in the Bansko ski resort. When the global financial crisis hit in 2009 Bulgarian real estate prices dropped due to the lack of credit and the oversupply of poor quality properties in these locations. Due to the amount of building which occurred there is still a large overhang of Bulgarian real estate for sale in these areas and it is recommended to avoid buying real estate in these areas. Instead you should focus on the location which have not experienced such high levels of building.
Now in 2012 prices for Bulgarian real estate have settled and both local and international investors are again focusing on Bulgaria property investment. They are being enticed by prices that in some cases are up to 50% below peak values and in a lot of cases Bulgarian real estate can now by purchased at close to the actual cost of construction. This makes Bulgarian real estate a great medium to long term investment as the cost of construction is continuously rising due to wage and commodity inflation. Over the last 10 years there has never been a better time to invest in Bulgaria real estate. There is now a wide variety to Bulgarian real estate for sale. At Concept Bulgarian Properties we focus on real estate for sale in the Borovets area. This is one of the top ski resorts in Bulgaria and is located close to Sofia making it a very popular investment choice both with local and foreign real estate investors.
Investing in Bulgaria real estate:
Here are some of the key reasons why investing in Bulgaria is now so popular:
- EU membership in January 2007 has resulted in significantly increased economic growth rates
- Bulgaria is on track to join the Schegen Travel Zone by 2012 further boosting trade links
- Very competitive tax regime - 10% corporate and income tax rates
- Strong inflows of foreign direct investment driven by lowest tax rates in the EU
- Bulgaria has one of the lowest debt to GDP ratios in the EU.
- Well educated, highly trained English speaking workforce
- Strategic geographic location on the trans-European transport corridor
- Over €11 billion of EU structural funding to be invested in the Bulgarian infrastructure until 2015
- The Bulgarian currency, the Leva is pegged to the euro – significantly reducing currency risk
- On track to join euro currency zone before 2015 - this is expected to result in significant further increases in foreign investment and increase the GDP of the country. All previous countries have seen significant real estate increases after joining the eurozone
- Bulgarian real estate prices remain amongst the lowest in Europe and are expected to increase significantly in future years
- The prices of Bulgarian real estate for sale are now 50% below peak values and in many cases properties are selling for close to the cost of construction.
- The Bulgarian tourism market is currently growing by 22% per year
- Rapidly modernising financial market with a number of mortgage products available to local and foreign investors
As well as being a top location for real estate investment the country itself is very beautiful and offers some amazing natural, cultural and historic attractions. To help you get a better feel for the country we have included a brief description below.
Situated in South Eastern Europe, Bulgaria has a strategically important location at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and Africa. Bulgaria is bordered by Romania, Serbia, Macedonia, Greece, Turkey and the Black Sea. The country itself is one of extraordinary diversity. The landscape ranges from snow-capped mountains to sun-drenched beaches. The country’s largest river is the Danube which stretches along the northern borders. The south west of the country is mountainous with two Alpine ranges. Mount Musala in the Rila Mountain is the highest peak on the Balkan Peninsula. In the south eastern part of the country lush and hilly plains run down to the Black Sea.
The country is dotted by hundreds of lakes and springs. Bulgaria boasts over 260 glacial lakes and 2,200 dam lakes. There is an abundance of mineral springs, many of which are being turned into tourist attractions where people can bathe in the healing waters. Bulgaria is also renowned for its wealth of natural parks and reserves which offer walking, trekking and climbing. Its climate is cold and snowy in the winter, yet hot and dry in the summer.
Bulgarian history and politics goes back thousands of years and has been shaped by several great civilizations through the ages. Bulgaria is one of the cradles of European civilization. It is also home to the world’s oldest known writing system, which is engraved on the famous Gradeshnitsa Tablets. The tablets date back to 5,000 BC. The ancestors of today’s modern Bulgarians are the Thracian peoples. In fact the Bulgarian roots stem from the Thracian civilization and were further influenced by the ancient Greeks and the ancient Romans.
Although the land on which Bulgaria now stands has been occupied for millennia, the modern state that we recognize was formed in 632 by Khan Kubat. It became a major European power in the 9th and 10th centuries. The country accepted the Orthodox faith in 864 – a faith that is at the core of its culture and value system to this day.
During the reign of Boris, the first Cyrillic alphabet was created and became the basis of all Slavic languages henceforth. For years Bulgaria was seen as the centre of the Slavic world. Bulgarian influence was heavily exerted over the Eastern Orthodox Slavs in both culture and literature.
The state was completely destroyed by the Byzantines in 1018. The Bulgarians challenged Byzantine rule several times until they finally established the second Bulgarian Empire in 1185. After this Bulgaria once again became an important player in Europe.
Bulgaria was conquered by the Ottoman Empire at the end of the 14th century. Ottoman rule lasted five centuries during which the people of Bulgaria faced terrible violence and oppression. Finally in 1877-78, Bulgarian rebels aided by Russian and Romanian forces finally defeated the Ottomans. It resulted in the Treaty of San Stefano in 1878 in which an autonomous Bulgarian principality was proclaimed. However, that treaty was rejected and a new one written called the Treaty of Berlin, which was proclaimed and accepted that same year.
During 1912-13 Bulgaria participated in the Balkan War. Then during the 2nd Balkan War against Greece and Serbia, Bulgaria lost most of the territories that they had gained during the first war.
Bulgaria was on the losing side during WWII because of an alliance they had formed with the Central Powers. After WWII the country was left unstable. It eventually fell under the Soviet sphere of influence. The People’s Republic of Bulgaria was created in 1946 and the country became staunch allies of the USSR.
The People’s Republic ended in 1989 with the collapse of the USSR. In 1990 Bulgaria held its first free election since 1931. The election was won by a moderate faction of the communist party. Since then Bulgaria has held multi-party elections and privatized its economy. In recent years the economy was been booming driven largely by EU membership and a very progressive tax system.
Bulgaria Property Investment
If you are interested in buying Bulgarian real estate or you need advice about which Bulgaria property investment is best for you then feel free to contact us to discuss your investment needs. We can offer advice about the best locations for investing in Bulgaria. As we mentioned above some parts of Bugaria have had too much building and we do not recommend these areas as a good Bulgaria property investment.
Whether you a buying Bulgarian real estate as an investment or just as a holiday or retirement home is is always advisable to seem local advice first. The Concept Bulgaria team is located on the ground in Bulgaria which means we can give real time advice and information about the Bulgarian real estate market. We are happy to answer your questions even if you are not purchasing your property through us.