Buying real estate in Bulgaria

Who can buy real estate in Bulgaria?

Every EU citizen can buy real estate in Bulgaria. There are restrictions when it comes to agricultural land only.

Non-EU foreign persons (natural or legal entities) may own buildings (including right of construction) and limited property rights, but cannot own land. However, land can be purchased by a local legal entity, which is owned by foreigners.

Who can help me buy real estate?

Handling a real estate transaction with a qualified lawyer/solicitor is recommended: We at Work in Bulgaria can help you with:

  • preliminary check of the title of the property, including possible encumbrances (mortgages, right of way, right of usage, injunctions, filed court claims, restitution claims, etc.) as of the moment of undersigning the preliminary contract for the purchase of the property;
  • drafting the preliminary contract for the purchase of the property;
  • drafting of an explicit and detailed PoA plus its legalization and translation;
  • preparation of the draft Notary Deed and obtaining a Certificate for lack of various encumbrances on the property to be valid as of the date of the notary procedure;
  • signing the final purchase contract with at the Notary’s Office and
  • obtaining the Notary Deed of ownership and delivering it to you.

Can I buy real estate located in Bulgaria without having to go to Bulgaria?

No, because notary procedures regarding real estate matters cannot be carried out outside Bulgaria by law . The Notary Deed has to be signed before a local Notary in which area the property is situated. As an option, via an explicit and detailed PoA issued to a local solicitor, foreigners can acquire a real estate property, without the need to be personally present at the undersigning of the contract.

It is advisable that the money, which accounts for the price of the real property, should already be available in the Buyer’s bank account in a local Bulgarian bank as of the date of transferring the ownership – the final notary procedure. Thus the Buyer or his/her representative will be able to transfer the amount to the Seller’s account immediately, which fact the Seller declares in the Notary Deed of ownership. It is a common practice 10 % of the agreed purchase price to be paid in advance as a guarantee deposit at the signing of the preliminary contract. Time between the preliminary contract and the final notary procedure is about a month. In some cases when the property is “clean” and all documents are ready the final notary procedure can be completed even sooner. 

How much this is going to cost me?

Solicitor’s fee  – 1-2% of the purchase price of the property but no less than EUR 650, in case the client uses our services as solicitors, which will cover the following legal work:

  • preliminary check of the title of the property, including possible encumbrances (mortgages, right of way, right of usage, injunctions, filed court claims, restitution claims, etc.) as of the moment of undersigning the preliminary contract for the purchase of the property,
  • drafting the preliminary contract for the purchase of the property AND negotiating content with sellers,
  • drafting of an explicit and detailed PoA plus its legalization and translation
  • preparation of the draft Notary Deed and obtaining a Certificate for lack of various encumbrances on the property to be valid as of the date of the notary procedure,
  • attending the signing the final purchase contract with at the Notary’s Office.

If the property is located farther that 150 kilometers from Sofia or Plovdiv the customer has to cover daily allowance and transportation in the amount of EUR 100/day.

Government purchase tax (Stamp duty) of 2-4% is payable on the Government assessed purchase price or on the real market price on completion of the sale.

Notary fee is about 1.01% of the purchase price.

All of the aforementioned fees are usually borne by the Buyer, unless both parties agree to be split in half.