In the period January – June, 2015, the total revenue from Bulgarian real estates, sold to foreigners is 26.1 million EUR. This information is given by Bulgarian National Bank (BNB).
The largest share of investments in real estates is held by Norway (4.7 million EUR, 18.2% of the total revenue for January – June 2016), Russia and the UK (with 3.9 million EUR, 14.9% of the total revenue for the same period).
What is the situation through the realtors eyes? “British buyers are on hold – at least this is the situation this year. The theme of Brexit affects the property market. “- say the analysts. The UK buyers are excited by how they will take benefits from their properties in Bulgaria, if they can rely on the health insurance in EU and many more questions. This led to a drop in property sales.
“British clients are no longer a factor in the market of our holiday properties.” – says the owner of a big real estate agency in Bulgaria. “But the rural houses still remain attractive for them. Overall, British clients continue to look for houses in the villages – they like brick buildings, ready to be renovated. Nevertheless, they want buildings with solid fundamentals and solid construction. Also they prefer to make repairs on their own”-said the broker. “Preferably the houses should be close to the mountain or sea – but most important to them is to be in quiet area with clean air.”
“Brits have good opportunities to buy properties in Bulgaria with their standard of living. Major buyers remain British retirees. But the good news is that recently in Bulgaria young families with small children come too. The logic of English is simple – “your country is good, the prices are normal. For this money in England we can never buy such a big house with a garden and even a swimming pool or at least a good place for it.”
“I can see there are many potential clients from UK” – confirms the Bulgarian real estate agency’s owner – “Houses, close to the cities, for 5000-6000 EUR can be found. Such offers come from areas around Plovdiv, Stara Zagora, Topolovgrad and even from Elhovo.”
To rely on foreign investments – especially in the real estate market – we need high quality projects, say the experts. They are sure that the main advantages of a good real estate agent, should be the knowledge of one or two foreign languages and knowing the local market. Agencies do need to strengthen their participation in international exhibitions and forums for properties also.
The situation in Britain:
Undoubtedly Brexit continues giving its impact on the real estate market. In some segments there is price raising, while in others- the prices go down. But concerning for the residential segment, the average price has risen by 17 000 pounds on an annual basis to 217,000 pounds.
During the last month the average increase was 1,000 pounds, according to the National Statistical Institute of Great Britain. If we look at some UK regions, for the past month the average price of apartments was 233,000 pounds in England and 145,000 pounds in Wales. Scotland amount is 144,000 pounds, and in Northern Ireland – 123 000 pounds.
In 2008, thanks to the self-taught real estate agent David Ferbarn, many Brits settled in Vratsa/Bulgaria. Former English teacher bought 150 abandoned farmhouses in Vratsa. He hired Bulgarian workers who repaired the buildings, and then sold them to British families. David decided to invest in rural properties because he has seen high prices and corruption in the main Bulgarian resorts.
Anthony Charles and his wife stunned residents of the border village of Levka in the municipality of Svilengrad, when they purchased a local former school in 2015. The school hasn’t been working since 1989. When Mr. Charles made his offer, two years ago, the floors fell through, the roof had leaks and a donkey used to live in the garden. However, he refused to give up and has made major renovations. Now, Anthony is living there permanently. He kept the authentic spirit of the old school and even has painted it entirely in red.
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