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Top Ten Tips: Buying

Top ten tips for buying property in Bulgaria. "Caveat emptor" is the standard phrase when buying anything and nothing is more true. Quest Bulgaria outlines the ten starting points for buying your Bulgarian property.

Pre Planning

Be absolutely sure how you are going to go about buying your Bulgarian property and what you are looking for. Off plan or resale? Visit the country and view properties or leave it all to your estate agent? What are your aims - turn it around quickly or long term view?

Finances
Before you start looking at property in Bulgaria, decide on how you are going to pay for it. Perhaps you are fortunate enough to be a cash buyer. If not, give consideration as to how you will obtain a mortgage, which could be eiher via a remortgage on your own home, dipping into your savings or another form of loan. Buyers who have their finances arranged in advance are in a better position to negotiate.

Where?
Not everywhere in Bulgaria is the same. Some places and regions are at a very early stage of development. Take a good look at what the various locations offer. If the property is particularly cheap, it is probably for a good reason - maybe lack of electric or water supply, no facilities...

Off Plan?
With off plan you never actually see what you are buying. This presents risks and potential. Of course the hope is that it will be worth more than the price originally agreed when you come to own or resell. With off plan it is best to know not only the country but also the particular area you are investing in very well.

Viewing
A lot of agents nowadays are offering potential buyers cheap or subsidised viewing trips. You can always take advantage of these but do watch out, as you can find yourself under immense pressure to buy with them.

Check them out
Whether dealing with an agent or a developer, check them out. Ask to see other projects they have completed, or whether they are part of trade associations.

Legal advice
Get your own independent lawyer who will act solely on your behalf. Most purchases go bad in Bulgaria because buyers trust the agent to put them in contact with a reputable lawyer, yet at the end of the day it turns out the lawyer was "in cahoots" with them.

Language
Never sign any document if you do not understand it. You should find a registered translator who can ensure that all documents are translated into your mother tongue. It sounds really obvious but many a buyer has come a "cropper" by signing something which they trusted the agent or developer told them was correct.

Guaranteed Rentals
There has been a lot of press about guaranteed rentals. Always beware of any such offers. Check whether they have a contract with a tour operator. Also, some developers just add on the rental figure to the selling price.

Extras
Don't forget any extra costs such as taxes and fees. This can be a nasty surprise at the end if you have not checked and can really add to the overall price.



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