Albena, Bulgaria

• How shall we start our property search?
Have a look at the properties on our website and when decide which properties you like, send us an email with any questions you might have about the properties using the “contact us” box located under the photos on every offer. For viewings you need to arrange a trip to Bulgaria and let us know. We will then set the necessary appointments. You can also ask us any other questions that you have, we’re here to help!
• How do we see the properties that we are interested in?
If you tell us in advance when you will be coming to Bulgaria, we can arrange viewings to fit your schedule (even a tight one!). We don’t charge a viewing fee, but we charge € 0.30 per km. We can also arrange your accommodation and meet you at the airport.
• What do we need to bring with us on our first visit?
Obviously you will need your passport, but also some Euros if you want to place a deposit immediately. (You can bring up to 10,000 Euros each into Bulgaria without declaring it if you have come from another EU country.). We would suggest you bring some sturdy shoes if you are looking at properties in the country, as some may be less accessible than others.
• How do we reserve a property?
You will need to pay a deposit (normally about 10% of the price and a minimum of 1000 euros) which is non refundable. This ensures that the property is removed from the market and not sold to anyone else.
• Can we pay by credit card or travelers’ cheques?
Travelers’ cheques are cashed only in the big towns and they charge high commissions on them. You can pay us using your credit or debit card for your property. Normal cheques take about 4 weeks to clear and they are not suitable for payments, especially for placing a deposit!
• Is it possible to buy without coming to Bulgaria?
Yes, this is possible, but not always so straight forward. You will have to get documents signed and stamped in the UK. It is often easier and quicker to come to Bulgaria for a couple of days and sort everything out here. Plus, you will be able to see the property.
• Will we get ownership documents for the property?
Yes, you will have title deeds in your name, or if you are buying through a company, your company name.
• What if we want to have renovations carried out on our property?
No problem, we can recommend a complete range of professional tradesmen who will work to the budget that you set them. You just need to tell them your requirements and negotiate the different options with them.
• What about our company tax returns?
Every year you have to submit your annual tax return, the same as in the UK. We have accountants that can do this for you. Our after sales package will include this service as one of the options available to you.
• Do we need a visa?
At the moment EU citizens can stay in Bulgaria for 90 days in any 6 months. Any more than that and you can easily apply for a Residence Certificate once you are in Bulgaria. This is valid for up to five years.
• What about the cost of living there?
Compared with UK prices, this is extremely cheap. A loaf of bread should be about 20 pence, a pint of lager about 55 pence, a packet of cigarettes about 70 pence. A litre of petrol is about 60 pence.
It's not possible to compare living costs in Bulgaria and Western Europe.
A few examples: House insurance is around 100-200 € Euros per year for buildings and contents (depending on the type of house). For a 30,000 € Euros property, insurance against theft, flood and fire costs about 125 € Euros per year with a decent insurance company like Allianz. For heating, there are central heating systems in the big cities: monthly costs for a 2-bedroom apartment around 100 € Euros. In the towns and villages, people use charcoal and wood, which is a cheaper way to heat a house. For electricity, when used for cooking, lighting or heating water, one pays about 30 € Euros monthly. Local and national taxes for
owning a property vary greatly depending on the location, but for the capital (and most expensive area) expect to pay around 150 Euros for a 2 bed apartment.
• Driving a car in Bulgaria.
There are few annual fees that must be paid every year to drive a car in our country:
Third party insurance, 30 Euros per year. Road tax (depending on the engine power): around 50 Euros per year for a 2.0 litre engine and MOT, 12 Euros per year. Many cars in Bulgaria are equipped with LPG systems, which is cheaper and more environmentally friendly than petrol. Bulgaria has the cheapest brand new cars in Europe. For example the new Renault Clio costs only 6,500 € EURO. Second hand vehicles of any type and brand are also widely available.
• Can we use our credit and debit cards when we come?
In the bigger towns, you can use your cards, but still only in the larger shops. All the hotels will accept cards, and all the major petrol stations, but in general most other transactions are carried out in cash.
• What about telephones?
It’s not worth bringing over a UK stationary phone for your new property as they will not work in Bulgaria. Mobiles will work, either with a Bulgarian SIM card or using your UK card if it is suitable.
• If our property is only going to be occupied for about two months of the year, do we really need to get good security for the rest of the time?
Yes, we recommend you have special alarm system and private property protection which costs 13-25 € EURO per month. There are some very professional companies in Bulgaria providing such a service.
• What are the regulations for the import and export of currency by foreigners?
Travellers entering or leaving the EU and carrying €10 000 or more in cash (or its equivalent in other currencies or easily convertible assets such as cheques drawn on a third party) have to make a declaration to the customs authorities.

This follows the entry into force of a new European Regulation aimed at fighting money laundering, and the financing of terrorism. Customs authorities are empowered under the Regulation to undertake controls on individuals, their baggage and their means of transport and detain cash that has not been declared.

Travellers must be aware that all Member States apply penalties in the event of failure to comply with the obligation to declare as laid down in the Regulations.