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Buy, Renovate and Sell

Many buyers look to purchase a run down old Bulgarian property, renovate it and resell it, hoping naturally to make a profit. Driving in the Bulgarian countryside or through any of the small villages you'll find a whole stack of old buildings in need of renovation.

The British have long been advocates of renovation and usually do a great job in bringing back these buildings to their former glory in a sympathetic manner.

Quest Bulgaria takes a look at the best way to approach buying a renovation project with the intention of resale.


Is it for you?

It is certainly a great way to buy property cheaply and then add on value with improvements. However, the key is not to take on more than you can handle. If you are taking on a massive project, how much of it can you do yourself? The more you can do, the more likely you are to make a profit. Can you do the design, source and transport materials, as well as managing a team of builders? We would not recommend you take on such a project unless you can be on site to make sure things go smoothly.

Can I make a profit?

In essence, yes. Make sure you buy in the right location and you buy the right type of property. What you really need is a well sited character property which you can turn into a quality home for potential buyers. Of course, you should not 'over do' the renovation and improvements which you undertake, otherwise you'll blow your budget.

Starting out...

Research, research, research. Check out the property market in the area you want to buy carefully and get a feel for the right price to pay. Also, think about who your potential buyers are likely to be and what needs they will have. This will help you choose a property best suited to your purchasers needs. You are better off buying a smaller property in a good location than a larger property in a poor location.

Watch out about access as there will be nothing worse if you find you can't get the lorry up to the house when the work starts.

How big a project?

What can you realistically manage and how much help you need are important questions to ask yourself. Very often it is easier to start with an empty shell rather than a property which is half done. Consider all this before you even start looking for a suitable property.

The maths

Work out your budget. Add in the additional purchase fees, lawyer costs, etc. Plus any other fees, such as architects and planning permissions. Either get a quote from a reputable builder for materials, labour and equipment or do the sums for yourself. Then add on a contingency figure of a minimum of 10% to the whole lot.

From this, you should then estimate the price you want to sell at, less any commissions and less any tax on the capital gain. From these figures, you'll see what your likely profit will be.

Slow down

Whatever you do, don't be rushed into buying the property. Take your time and visit as frequently as you need. Take all the photos and measurements you require as you'll need these to do a property costed plan of the whole project before you decide to buy. If your project will need planning permission, get a clause written into the preliminary contract that your purchase is subject to this.