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25th October 2016 8:33 AM

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Propertyshowrooms.com News - Bulgaria

News and articles on worldwide property and real estate investment in Bulgaria

Bulgaria's House Prices continue to rise sharply thanks to falling Interest Rates and stable Economy

Bulgaria's House Prices continue to rise sharply thanks to falling Interest Rates and stable Economy

So far most countries in the euro-zone have performed far better economically than expected. Among them is Bulgaria, where residential real estate prices continue to rise sharply thanks to strong performance of the country's economy, rising international demand and falling interest rates. Bulgarian apartments and villas, even in sought-after Sofia, are surprisingly cheap, starting from as little as £39,200 in some destinations.

According to the Global Property Guide, Bulgaria's real estate market suffered five years of stagnation, only to see it replaced by a rapid recovery in 2016. This recovery is being led by Bulgarian capital Sofia, where house prices are now in the double-digit, putting a broad smile on the faces of some early-bird investors. Here a one-bedroom apartment on Saborna Street near the National Bank, National Theatre and Presidency will now cost around £197,000.

Interest rates have continued to hover at almost Zero per cent on bank deposits, which is why more people began to invest in Bulgaria's real estate market in 2016. The growth in demand for cheap Bulgarian apartments and villas encouraged developers, and the continued rise in completed off-plan and pre-construction residential property transactions is most encouraging.

Polina Stoykova, the Executive Director of Bulgarian Properties, a leading estate agency, said that 2016 had been a very "dynamic year for the Bulgarian real estate market and for the first time in many years the trend has been entirely positive. Of course, there is always a risk when making a purchase in early stages of construction, but people are more willing to take this risk because currently demand is higher than the supply."

The fact that European citizens are now able to buy real estate, including land, has had a huge impact on the overall property market in Bulgaria, which is expected to remain strong throughout 2017, with demand in major cities, especially in the capital Sofia, to continue to grow. Supply is increasingly limited by fairly low levels of new construction projects. However, with the Bulgarian economy continued expansion, the construction sector should gain confidence and see better annual growth rates, too. According to the IMF, Bulgaria's economy is forecast to expand by a further 2.8% this year, having seen annual growth rates of around 1.5% since 2014.

Bulgaria's nationwide house price index grew by 8.82% during the year to Quarter 3 in 2016, according to the National Statistics Institute (NSI), and house prices increased by 1.59% during that same quarter (1.29% inflation-adjusted).

Before January 2012, foreigners were only able to purchase land in the name of a legal entity and could not own a Bulgarian property themselves. The lifting of this ban has enabled EU citizens to own a property as a private individual in their own name.

Location, Location, Location

In Sofia house prices rose by 14.4% during the third quarter of 2016, and have continued to rise sharply this year. By contrast, house hunters in Varna saw an overall increase in house prices of 5.9% in that same quarter, and similar figures for the first six months of this year.

The most sought-after locations demand the highest prices, both in terms of asking prices for property purchases and in terms of rental values. In the city centre of Sofia and Lozenets district for example, demand for rental objects continues to be high, despite seeing the greatest increase in purchase prices in Bulgaria. Here prices now range from 1,200 to 1,500 euros per square metre. However, in the districts of Druzhba, Suhata reka, and Levski buyers could find apartments at an average price of 580 euros per square metre.

Head into rural Bulgaria, or to the Black Sea coast, and it's still a veritable buyers' paradise for those with small budgets. A one-bedroom apartment in Elenite, Burgas, typically costs around £40,000, while the same budget will buy a 3-bedroom detached house in Dryanovo, Gabrovo, and Polski Trumbesh, Veliko Tarnovo. For a very modest £18,500, on the other hand, one can buy a one-bedroom apartment at the southern Black Sea coast, in Akheloy, Burgas.

Bulgaria is also blessed with snow-capped mountains and ski resorts. In Borovets, a ski resort in Sofia region, a four-bedroom detached villa comes with a guide price of just £130,000. Bulgaria sees significant amounts of snow in winter, and can thus offer good holiday rental yields all-year round, not just during spring and summer.


Article by Maria Thermann on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria's Borovets the Booziest Ski Resort in Europe

A new report from ski tour operators Crystal Ski reveals which resorts have the most bars per sq km and although the French coined the term après ski, it is the Bulgarians that have taken the crown.

The ultimate après resort, based on Crystal's research, is Borovets in Bulgaria with approximately four bars per sq km and pints of beer costing little more than £1 during happy hour.

A representative from Borovets tourism office said: " To have quality après, you need quality avant-ski, and Borovets has that too. The ski-in/ski-out resort in the highest Balkan mountains combines perfect skiing conditions with daily visits to rich cultural and historic sites, unique local cuisine and unrivalled hospitality ".

The reasonably priced and cheerful Eastern European spot came well ahead of the French Trois Vallées resorts of Méribel, with 2.2 bars per sq km, and Courchevel, with 2.1 bars, second and third place respectively.

The lively resort of Pas de la Casa in Andorra came in fourth with around 1.8 bars per sq km followed closely by the more traditional Austrian ski resort of Schladming in fifth place.

The French resort of Les Deux Alpes came sixth, Italy's Sauze d'Oulx and Livigno came seventh and eighth and a third Trois Vallées resort, Val Thorens, came ninth.

According to the search engine analytics tool Google AdWords, the term “après-ski” was searched for more than 22,500 times between December 2014 and April 2015, proving that skiers and snowboarders are not just looking for a large ski area, but also for venues where they can let their hair down at the end of the day.

Last September Crystal launched five different types of ski tours – Mile Muncher, Piste Princess, Gadget Guru, Park Rat and Après Animal, and incorporated them into the holiday search panel of the Crystal website.

Vicky Hales, customer engagement director at Crystal Ski Holidays, said: " We get that our customers all love ski holidays for different reasons, and our Après Animal Ski Explorer character has been really popular on social media. Skiers can now search our deals by which character they are – so après lovers can find the perfect holiday ".

The après research was based on 25 resorts in Europe, provided by tour operator Crystal Ski Holidays . Resort sizes vary. All bars counted are within the boundaries of the specified size of the resort.

The Bulgarian resort sits at 1,300m and its slopes rise to 2,550m. The 58km of mainly intermediate pistes are served by 12 lifts. It also has two terrain parks, catering for all levels, and night skiing on eight runs. Snowmaking covers more than 60% of the slopes.

Local folklore evenings are popular with visitors as are excursions to the capital Sofia or the UNESCO World Heritage Centre Rila Monastery.


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria's Property Market to Strengthen Further in 2016

Property consultants Cushman & Wakefield reported a record year for foreign investment in Bulgaria last year with real estate sales contributing €239 to the economy, predicting a continued rising demand throughout 2015.

After prolonged economic hardship following the global financial crisis, Bulgaria's property market remains at a huge discount to peak 2007 prices, attracting wealthy foreign investors with opportunities to acquire land and property at rock-bottom prices.

Polina Stoykova, managing director of Bulgarian Properties said: " An important element of the new market reality is the return of confidence in the property market. More and more buyers are thinking of buying property because real estate is a safe real asset and good investment. This understanding coincided with a very favourable moment in the property market development because real estate prices are currently at levels from ten years ago and respectively, the properties are much more affordable. We could also add to the picture the improved mortgage conditions now offered by the banks ".

Apart from price, another dynamic property investors are interested in is tourism. Most foreign investors seek to take advantage of resort properties with excellent occupancy rates that ensure consistent rental revenue streams in a growing market. Bulgaria has risen through the ranks as one of Europe's most popular alpine resorts, offering exceptional value for family ski holidays and with plenty of breathtaking beaches the country has a whole lot more on offer besides.

Bulgaria enjoyed an extremely successful winter season in 2014/2015 that saw more than 80,000 visitors to its alpine resorts, boosting the nation's economy by €17.5m. According to the country's tourism minister Nikolina Angelkova, the number of visitors from Turkey increased by almost 30% as a result of the simplification of visa requirements while German tourists increased by around 17%.

At the beginning of August last year, budget flight operators Ryanair issued a press release that is set to boost Bulgaria's tourism and real estate sectors moving forward into 2016. The airline's Robin Kiely said: " Ryanair is pleased to announce a new daily London Stansted to Sofia route beginning May 2016 which will go on sale on www.ryanair.com in September. Sofia is another key capital city airport and our second in Bulgaria as we continue to grow Europe's largest route network, with more routes and flights and improved schedules ".

Property prices in Bulgaria have also been buoyed by weak supply due to limited construction. This has impacted markets in the country's large cities and resort areas the most and with off-plan investment opportunities thin on the ground, prices look set to continue rising.

As a direct result of Bulgaria's fantastic winter season and the financial injection to its economy, property prices are forecast to stabilise as the economic recovery is consolidated. Modest price growth in both commercial and residential property sectors is expected throughout the year, matched by stable economic growth that will underpin investment in Bulgaria.

According to a report by real estate researchers Colliers International , foreign investors are expected to steadily increase their exposure in Bulgaria's commercial property market throughout 2016, depending on the availability of product for sale. Investor returns will continue to be driven by rental upside, discounts on existing debt and lower interest rates and strong income generating assets in Bulgaria's commercial occupational markets will continue to attract more investment capital.


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Confidence Returning to Bulgaria's Property Market

Property consultants Cushman & Wakefield reported a record year for foreign investment in Bulgaria last year with real estate sales contributing €239 to the economy, predicting a continued rising demand throughout 2015.

After prolonged economic hardship following the global financial crisis, Bulgaria's property market remains at a huge discount to peak 2007 prices, attracting wealthy foreign investors with opportunities to acquire land and property at rock-bottom prices.

Polina Stoykova, managing director of Bulgarian Properties said: " An important element of the new market reality is the return of confidence in the property market. More and more buyers are thinking of buying property because real estate is a safe real asset and good investment. This understanding coincided with a very favourable moment in the property market development because real estate prices are currently at levels from ten years ago and respectively, the properties are much more affordable. We could also add to the picture the improved mortgage conditions now offered by the banks ".

Apart from price, another dynamic property investors are interested in is tourism. Most foreign investors seek to take advantage of resort properties with excellent occupancy rates that ensure consistent rental revenue streams in a growing market. Bulgaria has risen through the ranks as one of Europe's most popular alpine resorts, offering exceptional value for family ski holidays and with plenty of breathtaking beaches the country has a whole lot more on offer besides.

Bulgaria enjoyed an extremely successful winter season that saw more than 80,000 visitors to its alpine resorts, boosting the nation's economy by €17.5m. According to the country's tourism minister Nikolina Angelkova, the number of visitors from Turkey increased by almost 30% as a result of the simplification of visa requirements while German tourists increased by around 17%.

At the beginning of August, budget flight operators Ryanair issued a press release that is set to boost Bulgaria's tourism and real estate sectors moving forward into 2016. The airline's Robin Kiely said: " Ryanair is pleased to announce a new daily London Stansted to Sofia route beginning May 2016 which will go on sale on www.ryanair.com in September. Sofia is another key capital city airport and our second in Bulgaria as we continue to grow Europe's largest route network, with more routes and flights and improved schedules ".

Property prices in Bulgaria have also been buoyed by weak supply due to limited construction. This has impacted markets in the country's large cities and resort areas the most and with off-plan investment opportunities thin on the ground, prices look set to continue rising.

As a direct result of Bulgaria's fantastic winter season and the financial injection to its economy, property prices are forecast to stabilise as the economic recovery is consolidated. Modest price growth in both commercial and residential property sectors is expected throughout the year, matched by stable economic growth that will underpin investment in Bulgaria.

According to a report by real estate researchers Colliers International , foreign investors are expected to steadily increase their exposure in Bulgaria's commercial property market throughout 2014, depending on the availability of product for sale. Investor returns will continue to be driven by rental upside, discounts on existing debt and lower interest rates and strong income generating assets in Bulgaria's commercial occupational markets will continue to attract more investment capital.

 


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria Pulls out Stops to Boost Tourism after Bumper Winter Season

Simplification of the visa requirements of Russian and Turkish visitors to Bulgaria introduced in February this year look set to significantly boost Bulgaria's tourist sector, an important economic driver for the country.

Bulgaria's tourism minister Nikolina Angelkova recently reported 9% growth in tourism over an extremely successful winter season that saw an additional 80,000 visitors to its alpine resorts, boosting revenue a further €17.5m.

She said that the number of Turkish visitors had increased by almost 30% as a result of the simplification of visa requirements while German tourists increased 17%, Austrian 7% and visitors from Israel by more than 20%.

The visa application process was streamlined to try and improve visitor numbers from Russia and Ukraine in attempts to improve relations with the country after Bulgaria's support for EU sanctions and its cancellation of major Russian energy projects.

More visitors are expected

Angelkova commented on the upcoming summer season arguing that the preliminary forecast was optimistic except for the Russian and Ukrainian market, expected to decline by around 30% this year.

However, more visitors are expected from other nations that could limit the shortfall for the coming summer season. Arrivals from Germany are expected to increase by around 5%, Israel 10%, France 4.5%, Lithuania, Latvia and Moldova 40% and Poland, Czech Republic and Belarus by 5.10%.

The tourism minister suggested that the number of tourists arriving from UK and Romania was expected to remain unchanged, while visitors from Greece – one of Bulgaria's most important markets - are set to increase by around 10%.

Bulgaria's government are also making headway to improve the country's tourism infrastructure and have been developing cultural and historical routes together with promotional material and maps that are available imminently.

Bulgaria is a fantastic country for property investment because of its place at the base of a growth curve in its tourist markets. Bulgarian property prices remain low compared with pre-crisis levels there are some great yield opportunities in resort areas, both beach and ski. This is a country that has everything on offer to the discerning traveller and although relatively under-developed, the outlook is rather bright.

 


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian Holiday Rental Portal Captures Tourism Growth

Bulgaria's tourism minister Nikolina Angelkova recently reported a bumper winter season (December-February) that saw growth of over 9%, representing an increase of almost 80,000 tourists.

Commenting on this year's summer season, she said the preliminary forecast was extremely optimistic. An increase of 5% of German arrivals, 10% Israeli, 5% from France and a massive 40% increase in visitors from Lituania, Latvia and Moldova is forecast for summer 2015.

Bulgaria has become an increasingly popular holiday destination in the last few years although its tourist sector is relatively undeveloped. With fantastic beach resorts and winter skiing, there's something for everyone all year around.

Seeing a niche in the market, a new portal – Arendoo.com – is set to revolutionise Bulgaria's holiday property market. This is good news for the many British and Irish investors in Bulgaria's property market and presents an opportunity to capture growth in the country's tourism and make a good profit from it.

Arendoo.com is a fully transparent, fully accountable rental portal that generates bookings as well as providing associated services such as cleaning, key exchange and linen changes. In a press release the portal states:

" Arendoo.com is Bulgaria's answer to a decade of under-performing property assets. Charging owners only when property rentals are completed, arendoo.com's clients enjoyed their properties being let for more than 40,000 rented nights last year. "

The portal's director Christophe Gater said: " Until now, British and Irish owners have had few professional options in the Bulgarian rental market. Most have naturally opted for the services offered by their complex reception but have suffered inexplicably low occupancy. It's time for accountability and full transparency in Bulgaria's holiday rental market ".

Arendoo.com fills the void and communication between foreign owners and their holiday properties in Bulgaria. It is currently the only rental portal offering videos of listed properties and online log-in facilities for owners where they can view all bookings, transactions and monies owed. They also cover check-in and check-out together with cleaning and linen services so that owners overseas have hassle-free rentals in their absence.

The portal arrives at just the right time as Bulgaria's popularity among international tourists is rising. Owners of property in the country's holiday hotspots now have a way to tap into visitor volume growth allowing them to enjoy more consistent rental income.

 


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian Tourism Sector Forecasts 8.5% Growth in 2015

Deputy Mayor of Sofia, Todor Chobanov predicted growth of between 7% and 10% in Bulgaria's tourist sector this year, in a statement earlier this week.

The improved outlook comes on the back of Bulgaria's strengthening economy which recorded its first Q1 budget surplus since 2009, with €128m in its public purse ripe for re-investment.

Bulgaria's winter sun resorts had a spectacular 2014, recording an increase in visitor numbers of 9.2% to the nation's ski slopes during the season, according to Tourism Minister Nikolina Angelkova.

Todor Chobanov presented Bulgaria's Regional Tourism Product Development project on Monday, part of a national scheme to invest in tourism infrastructure to support predicted growth in the sector.

The local government project will see investment directed towards the municipalities of Sofia, Ihtiman and Svoge. The development package includes routes to over 20 historical, cultural, religious and natural sites in the three municipalities.

Ivo Marinov, Director of Municipal Enterprise Tourist Service confirmed that Bulgaria's capital registered a 7% increase in tourist numbers in 2014, consolidating its position as the country's most important economic sector.

Tourists have flocked to Bulgaria's ski resorts throughout the season although there has been a distinct rise in interest in the country's many spa hotels, adding another dimension to its tourist market.

In terms of property investment, strong growth in tourism is a dynamic that adds value to a resort purchase. Bulgaria is an attractive destination all year round due to its rich landscape that features awe-inspiring mountains thick with snow during the winter and glorious sun-baked beaches on the Black Sea coast.

As Bulgaria's tourism expands, its real estate market will be positively impact, with demand for properties in major cities and resort areas expected to see growth in 2015. Low levels of new construction will ensure that demand remains consistent although prices are likely to increase as a result.

 


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian Property on the Rebound

2014 was a good year for Bulgaria's real estate sector, with investment picking up as prices hit the bottom of the market.

Demand for properties in major cities is set to continue during 2015, particularly in the commercial real estate market, on the back of a record year for foreign investment in Bulgaria. Deals involving offices, malls, hotels and plots of land reach record volumes, contributing €239m to the Bulgarian economy in 2014, according to research by Cushman & Wakefield .

Demand for commercial real estate in Bulgaria saw major growth last year, largely due to recovery in its property market and the opportunity to acquire quality assets at rock-bottom prices.

Prices are currently at levels from 10 years ago

Polina Stoykova, managing director of Bulgarian Properties said: " An important element of the new market reality is the return of confidence in the property market. More and more buyers are thinking of buying property because real estate is a safe real asset and good investment. This understanding coincided with a very favourable moment in the property market development because real estate prices are currently at levels from 10 years ago and respectively, the properties are much more affordable. We could also add to the picture the improved mortgage conditions now offered by the banks ".

Bulgaria's property market recovery is set to continue through 2015 with growing demand and weak supply due to limited new construction giving buoyancy to the sector.

Polina Stoykova expects the real estate market to be driven principally by Bulgarian buyers in 2015, including the segments that were traditionally dominated by foreign buyers such as property by sea and ski resorts. " We also notice a noticeable increase of interest to properties in Bulgaria by British buyers and we expect this trend to evolve in 2015, " she said.

Apartments in Bulgaria's largest cities and resort areas, e.g. Burgas, will remain the prime target for both Bulgarian and foreign investors in 2015. Property prices in the country are expected to stabilise and see modest growth as Bulgaria consolidates its recovery during the year.

 


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria's Bansko Best Value for Ski Holidays

Bansko in Bulgaria has been named the cheapest family ski holiday destination in Europe, according to TripAdvisor.

The survey compared hotel costs, meals, drinks, ski passes, hire and lessons over the course of 7 days for a family of four in 42 European ski resorts, before announcing Bansko a clear value-for-money winner.

TripAdvisor's survey identified Switzerland as having four of the 10 most expensive resorts in Europe, with St Anton, Austria ranking as the most expensive at an average cost of £5,000 per family.

Bansko best value for family ski holidays

Bansko, in south-west Bulgaria topped the poll with packages costing the least at £1,631, almost a third cheaper than St Anton.

Second in the poll was Spain's Sierra Nevada, where costs totalled £1,930 followed by Winter Olympics host resort, Sochi in Russia at £2,025.

After St Anton, St Moritz was the second most expensive resort at a cost for a family of four of £4,811, followed by Val d'Isere in France (£4.606), Zermatt in Switzerland (£4,572) and France's Val Thorens at £4,565.

The survey heralds further good news for Bulgaria's tourism sector which has enjoyed considerable growth this year. Bulgarian Hotelier and Restaurant Owner Association, Blagoy Ragin recently commented that the sector expects around 6% increase in visitor numbers this winter.

Not only has Bansko been identified as the best value for family ski holidays, it is also a well-known resort for ski novices, making it the perfect destination for young families. Out of 16 runs in total, 30% are for beginners, 45% intermediate and 25% for advanced skiers, providing enough choice to keep the whole family happy.

The tiny medieval town of Bansko has been rejuvenated by ski tourism, with 5-star luxury available at the Kempinski Grand Arena hotel which enjoys direct access to the gondola ski lift. The old cobbled streets are crammed with tavernas and restaurants to cater to every taste, providing a wealth of choice for maximum enjoyment.

 


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian Property Buoyed by Foreign Investment

2014 has seen a great deal of change in the Bulgarian real estate market, with more and more foreigners buying assets along the Black Sea coast, in the ski resorts or in the country's capital, Sofia.

Consequently, house prices and rents have started to show increases for the first time since the financial crisis, with further growth expected. Despite a lack of new large-scale construction projects in Bulgaria, the property market still has many assets to offer.

The main difference between Bulgaria and other real estate markets in Eastern Europe that have experienced an increase in prices is that in the capital, real estate projects are easily accessible to the public through vehicles such as Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), listed at the stock exchange.

This means that Bulgaria's property market is largely financed by their stock exchange, a unique attribute to Bulgaria compared to other Eastern European countries, still struggling with the aftermath of the financial crisis, unable to revive their own real estate sectors.

Commercial property remains relatively cheap to other countries with office space in central locations fetching around €2000/sqm for prime spaces. The commercial rentals sector has also enjoyed growth, largely as a result of rents falling to 9% for centrally-located office space.

Prices are considerably higher in the residential sector, around €1,800/sqm in prime Sofia locations while in other Eastern European capitals, the prices can reach as much as €2,500/sqm.

The same price disparity can be seen in Bulgaria's agricultural land which has an average price per hectare of €1,000, while in Poland land can fetch around €6000 per hectare and in Greece, up to €10,000.

There are several advantages of investing in REITs, including improved liquidity over traditional property purchases and the divisibility of the sums that can be invested. The REIT segment of the Sofia real estate market has a capitalisation of €200m with forecasts for the figure to reach €1bn over the next 3-4 years.


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

A Bright Outlook for Bulgarian Property


Bulgaria’s property market is officiallyrecovering from the ravages of recession, after recording house price growthover the last three months. According to brokers, a total of 220,000property transactions are now completed annually which equates to 19,000 salesper month with an average price of around €50,000, an increase of 15% in Julyalone.  Most popular properties are 1 and 2 bedroomapartments in city locations with an increasing trend for foreign purchases inpopular tourist destinations. Brokers have also reported an anomalousincrease in transaction activity through the summer in the sectors of officespace and building plots with construction permits. Prevailing positive trends on the Bulgarianproperty market were observed again in August with Bulgaria’s capital Sofia andthe largest coastal city of Varna experiencing the most property sales, hittinga record high and supporting optimistic expectations for the second half of theyear. Property prices in Sofia increased 1.13% inAugust, an annual increase of 0.82% although still a staggering 42% below peakprices in 2007.  In Varna house prices have been increasingrapidly over the last year although August saw the market cooling slightly witha fall in prices of 1.54%.  However, overthe year and including August’s results, Varna has seen house prices increaseby almost 15% in the last 12 months. As one of the newest members of the EU, Bulgariais enjoying a great deal of foreign investment and infrastructureimprovement.  As in any country, theprice of property is linked to the nation’s economic health and with predictedannual GDP growth of 3% through to 2018; Bulgaria is currently looking in veryfine form.  Tourism is a significant contributor toBulgaria’s economy.  While the coastaland mountain regions have well-known holiday spots, much of the country remainsoff the tourist map and this has suppressed prices of property for sale inBulgaria’s interior. Some spa towns with Roman attractions haveyet to be fully discovered and there are large unexplored regions of greatnatural beauty that would appeal to tourists wanting more than sun, sand andsnow.  As awareness grows, the price ofproperty in Bulgaria’s inland areas is forecast to rise significantly.
Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria Property Prices up 2% signalling Recovery

After years of being more or less in the doldrums, Bulgaria’s property market is showing green shoots of recovery in 2014 withproperty prices rising for the first time since the global real estate crisis. Bulgaria’s National Statistical Institute recently publisheda report showing an increase of 1.79% in home prices during the first quarterof the year and an increase of 2% in the second quarter, compared with the sameperiod last year. Polina Stoykova, chief operations manager of BulgarianProperties said:  “Data from Bulgaria’sNational Statistical Institute shows an increase of 1.79% in home prices duringthe first quarter of 2014 over the previous year; the second quarter had anincrease of 2%.  The biggest cities inthe country, such as the capital Sofia and Plovdiv, have seen the biggestincreases in home prices.” Foreign investors make up around 10% of the Bulgarianproperty market according to Stanslav Petrov, sales manager for Select PropertiesBulgaria. “Foreign buyers, most of whom are seeking vacationapartments or houses, tend to be attracted to the Black Sea coast, inparticular the cities of Varna and Burgas, followed by Ski resorts such asPamporovo and Borovets.  The capitalSofia is the third preferred region or area for foreign buyers withhigher-priced properties than the Black Sea coast and the ski resorts.” Sea-front locations remain popular for foreign buyers saidZlatka Georgieva, sales manager for Best Bulgarian Properties, based in Sofiawho adds that among foreign homebuyers “there is a search for first-line beachhouses, which due to the building restrictions in Bulgaria and the rarity ofbeach topography makes their prices high.” Russian buyers are still in the majority in Bulgaria withthe Brits returning to the market they fuelled to boiling point from 2000 to2008.  Foreign interest in Bulgarianproperties also comes from Germany, France, Holland, Belgium, Ukraine,Scandinavia, the United States, Canada, Australia and South Africa.
Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Fascinating Facts about Bulgaria

From remote, wooded mountain ranges sprinkled with secluded villages and captivating monasteries to vibrant modern cities and swathes of sandy beaches bordering the Black Sea coastline, Bulgaria is a country well worth exploring.

It isn't hard to see why so many foreign and domestic holidaymakers flock to the Bulgarian coast every summer but there is also a rich cultural heritage and some surprising facts that not many people know about this Balkan gem.

Bulgaria is the oldest country in Europe and it hasn't changed its name since it was first established in 681AD. Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria is the second oldest city in Europe, founded 7000 years ago. Gold treasure discovered in the Varna Necropolis dates back to 5000BC making it the oldest gold in the world. Bulgaria is number three in the list of countries with most valuable archaeological sites discovered on their territories, preceded only by Greece and Italy. A Bulgarian folk song 'Izlel e Delio Haydutin' was sent into space with the Voyager 1 and 2 probes among a collection of music selected to portray the diversity of life and culture on Earth. Bulgarians express approval by shaking their heads rather than nodding. Some of the world's most popular and expensive perfumes are made from famous Bulgarian rose oil. 1000 rose blossoms are required to produce one gram of oil. Bulgaria has the highest number of natural mineral springs in continental Europe with over 600. The Bulgarian army has never lost a single flag in battle. Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg is of Bulgarian descent, named after his grandfather Marko who emigrated from Bulgaria to the US in 1940. It was a Bulgarian who created the first computer in the world. Working in partnership with American inventor Clifford Berry, scientist John Atanasoff designed and developed the first electronic digital computing device. Bulgarian scientist Peter Petroff invented the first ever digital wristwatch and the world's first wireless heart monitor. Assen Jordanoff, of Bulgarian descent, invented the airbag. The Bulgarian national football team finished fourth in the 1994 World Cup. Over 15,000 Thracian tombs have been discovered on the territory of Bulgaria, most of which are yet to be explored.

Click here for Property for sale in Bulgaria


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria – Residential Property Reaches Equilibrium in 2014

Researchers at the PMR Group have recently published a report that confirms the Bulgarian property market has finally reached equilibrium and is now poised for growth.  According to the report, current house prices have displayed increased stability since the close of 2012.

Bulgarian construction output is likely to be focused on small-scale real estate projects rather than large-scale residential complexes, to meet increased demand for small homes and flats.
The Bulgarian housing market has experienced a 17% growth in transactions, largely in prime markets and particularly luxury apartments.  Numerous agencies and architects have reported a significant rise in housing purchases during the last six months of 2013 which may indicate increased, yet stabilising demand.

Property purchases in Bulgaria are increasingly through mortgage-backed finance with overseas investment contributing significantly to the growth of this sector.

Increased demand has been focused on small homes and apartments that retail at an average of BGN95,000 or €48,573.  Bulgaria also experienced its slowest decline in apartment prices over the course of 2013 with prices falling by just 1.21% per m², according to figures from the National Statistical Institute.  After allowing for inflation, apartment prices have actually shown to have risen slightly by 0.38%.

Bulgarian property Investment from foreigners has increased significantly with principal interest being from Russian investors as investors diversify assets to protect themselves against further US sanctions.  Foreign interest has, perhaps unsurprisingly, been focused on seaside resorts and homes with coastal properties having risen by 20% over the course of 2013.

Bulgaria’s capital, Sofia, is no longer the central construction hub as smaller coastal cities such as Bourgas and Varna taking up the mantle.  The two cities experienced record rates of completed construction projects over the last few years.

There has been a gradual shift from large-scale residential complexes to individual housing as domestic investors seek a safe haven for their money in a climate of uncertainty.

The reduction of real estate projects completed between 2012 and 2013 together with stable housing prices clearly indicates the property market has found equilibrium with forecast figures suggesting continued yet sustainable growth into 2015.


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria Home Construction set for 5% Growth in 2014

According to a recent report released by the PMR Group, medium-term prospects for the Bulgarian residential construction market are cautiously optimistic, with a reasonably positive outlook for long-term developments.

Bulgaria's house prices have stabilised since 2012 and that stability is expected to extend to construction output in 2014. Construction is not likely to be focused on large-scale residential projects over the next three years with the exception of possibly one or two developments a year.

2013 saw slight improvements in the housing market with 17% growth being recorded on the number of transactions in the luxury apartments sector in Bulgaria. Various sources from architects to real estate agencies noted increased activity near the end of 2013 and the first quarter of 2014, indicating a much better year for residential construction, with increased demand, improved mortgage financing and a slightly improved overall economic situation.

The bulk of demand is concentrated on smaller, cheaper flats with a price range of around BGN95,000 (€48,573) in prime locations. Bulgaria has also enjoyed interest from foreign investors, particularly from Russia, interested in buying a second home or a property to let out for holidays. Recent price growth in Black Sea resorts has resulted from the increased demand from foreign property investors.

In 2013 Sofia, the capital city of Bulgaria was most affected by the oversupply created before the global economic crisis. As a result, more than half of the current offers on the real estate market are for properties which were completed during 1998-2012.

During last year, as Sofia lost its status as Bulgaria's major building hub, coastal cities such as Varna and Burgas continued to record high completion numbers and are expected to meet the level of the previous few years in both building and dwelling completions within a short timescale.

New construction is likely to be focused on developments smaller than 10,000m², most frequently being in the range of 2,000-3,000m². With an average of 4.2 dwellings per completed building, the trend for smaller residential construction projects brought a decline from the average 4.7 dwellings per completed building in 2011. Consequently, a substantial decrease in the number of dwellings per building can be noted especially when compared to 2010 (6.7 dwellings per building) and 2009 (7.4).

The most desirable areas are prime locations on city centre main streets or on the outskirts of big urban areas with good infrastructure. Unlike the pre-crisis period, there has been an absence of large-scale projects being developed or even announced which has resulted in a shortage of multi-family complexes as developers build to meet investor demand for individual housing solutions.

The number of projects started in 2013 is almost identical to 2012 across three categories – the number of buildings; the number of dwellings and the gross area of the dwellings completed. However, these statistics are still only very slightly different from those in 2011, again showing that the market has found its equilibrium and that positive growth should be expected by 2015 or possibly as early as the last quarter of 2014.

As with many international housing markets, it is unlikely that Bulgaria will experience the 2007-2008 peaks for another three to five years although growth recorded in the last few quarters would appear to be sustainable and underpinned by strong economic fundamentals. Nevertheless, from an investors points of view it would now appear to be the most opportune time to invest in Bulgarian real estate.


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Why Property Investors are Flocking to Bulgaria

Since 2012, when Bulgaria lifted the five-year moratorium on land purchases, there has been a significant lift in interest from European investors. Despite the country's location on the outskirts of politically volatile Ukraine, experts predict that Bulgaria is very well-positioned to take advantage of the eventual European upturn.

Although far from recovered, the Bulgarian real estate market has certainly improved over the last year. The 1.21% decline in house prices across Bulgaria last year was the slowest since 2009 with only 3 of 28 provinces seeing an increase in property prices in 2013.

It is also noteworthy that the average house price in Bulgaria is now 39% below the 2008 pre-crisis peak, suggesting that there is plenty of room for growth over the longer term.

Bulgaria has one of the lowest European budget deficits and overall debt figures which leaves the government significant scope to invest in real estate, infrastructure and the overall economy as and when the time is right. For this reason, the country is now attracting interest from seasoned real estate investors with a keen eye for a lucrative investment.

Economists expect Bulgaria to expand by 1.8% during 2014 which, if achieved, would make the country one of Europe's stronger economies. Property transactions in the capital Sofia increased by 10% during 2013, mainly due to the lifting of the moratorium, and this trend looks likely to continue throughout the country.

Bulgarian Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski's government has been criticised for its lack of reforms although the country's stock exchange increased its turnover by an outstanding 124% with another stellar performance predicted for 2014.

Many experts believe that Bulgaria’s housing is seeing the bottom of the market and prices are likely to stabilise before increasing towards the end of the year in response to improved investor sentiment and increasing transaction volumes.

Property prices also remain low compared with properties in other European countries - in the region of 25% to 50% less for similar homes. Continued economic expansion in the coming years combined with hugely discounted property prices are attractive incentives for investors. Sales to European investors are expected to increase from 9% in 2013 to 15% in 2014 which will inevitably lead to an increase in prices.

Investors entering Bulgarian real estate at the current time will be buying into a market that already has a lot of value built in to it. With the prospect of economic recovery very clear on the horizon, investments are also underpinned by Bulgaria's expansion as a nation, reducing the risk and increasing the security of real estate purchases in the country.


Article by +Roxanne James on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria's Property Market Rebounds in 2013

According to the National Statistical Institute (NSI) , Bulgaria's housing market is now recovering slowly, amidst an improving economy. House prices are now stabilizing, and the volume of property transactions is increasing.

2013 saw the slowest year-on-year decline in the past 5 years as the average price of existing flats in Bulgaria dropped by just 1.21%. Property prices in the country are now 39% lower than their peak in 2008 and out of 28 provinces, only 3 provinces (Ruse, Targovishte and Veliko Tarnovo) saw house prices increase in 2013.

Bulgaria's housing market is expected to continue recovering in 2014 due to the cash savings and stable incomes of domestic homebuyers according to Georgi Pavlov of local real estate agency Adres:
“Deposit interest rates are expected to drop further in the next 12 months and the decline of real estate prices will stop, which will activate buyers. We expect that a lot of people who have savings accounts will consider investing in real estate, once they note the decrease in interest rates. Property investment is a safe bet, and a possible price hike would make it even more profitable.”

Since the beginning of 2012, it is now much easier for EU citizens to purchase property in Bulgaria, including land particularly since the five year moratorium on land purchases, set as a condition in the Accession Treaty between the Republic of Bulgaria and the EU was lifted.

Previously, foreigners could purchase land only in the name of a legal entity and were not allowed to own a property. The lifting of the ban now gives European citizens the right to own property as individuals.

In Sofia, the Capital of Bulgaria, property sales have improved the most with the volume of transactions increasing by 10% in 2013.

The NSI also report that in 2014, the Bulgarian government expects the economy to expand by 1.8%, which together with the fact that Bulgaria has one of the lowest budget deficits and overall debt levels in Europe suggests that the economic outlook for the country is very optimistic.


Article by +Peter Mindenhall on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Encouraging Start to 2014 for Bulgarian Property Market

The first three months of 2014 have shown a marked increase of activity in the Bulgarian property market, according to data gathered by BulgarianProperties.com. Figures for Q1 of 2014 show that levels of activity in the market are extremely high: residential property sales are up by 15% compared with the same period in 2013¹.

The residential districts of Vitosha and Mladost within the Bulgarian capital of Sofia are currently enjoying the greatest surge in the number of property sales, with properties selling for between 600 and 750 euros per square metre in these areas. Figures show that apartments across Sofia as a whole are worth an average of 730 euros per square metre and this value remains unchanged from 2013. Statistics also show that consumers most often buy apartments in Sofia for sums of up to €50,000, with more luxurious properties in the capital being sold for figures in excess of €120,000.

The upturn is in line with predictions made in December 2013 by Georgi Pavlov, Executive Director of the Bulgarian real estate agency Adres. He predicted that dropping deposit interest rates and the stabilisation of real estate prices in 2014 would 'activate buyers' and kick-start the Bulgarian property market. According to Pavlov, the property market in Bulgaria 'will be predictable' and 'without significant risk' in 2014, which will entice those with savings accounts to invest in property when they observe the favourable decrease in interest rates².

As sales of Bulgarian property have increased, so enquiries about Bulgarian property have also increased, rising by 30% over the last three months. Consumers are currently showing the most interest in apartments in the capital city of Sofia. Houses in Sofia are also proving to be popular, attracting the attention of 18% of prospective buyers of Bulgarian property. Such a dramatic increase in enquiries has led experts to believe that the Bulgarian property market will remain highly active in the coming months and throughout 2014.

¹ Polina Stoykova, ' Strong Q1 for the property sales in Sofia ' (31st March 2014), BulgarianProperties.com.

² ' Bulgarian Property Market Expected to Revive in 2014 ' (20th December 2013), noinvite.com – Sofia News Agency.
Article by +James Roberts on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Demand for Luxury Property in Bulgaria Starts to Rise

Levels of demand in investing in Bulgaria are on the rise, with a surge in the volume of people looking for middle to high-end properties according to a new report released by Colliers real estate agents. It said that sales numbers at the higher tip of the market have been increasing in recent times, thanks to the fact that there has been a degree of stabilising in the property market in the nation, a reality which has helped to see confidence among buyers growing.

According to Colliers' Tania Emilova, the number of properties sold in the past few months has been increasing by 15 per cent as confidence soars. And as the demand continues to climb, the price of properties in the country has also been increasing thanks to a shortage in houses to meet this demand, a reality that has been seen in other countries like the UK in recent times.

Ms Emilova said that the imbalance of supply and demand had been one of the defining factors in the market for property in Bulgaria throughout the past few months, adding that this is a situation which is only likely to not only continue but also become exacerbated throughout the remainder of 2014 as more and more people see real estate as a strong investment option. The main deciding factors in whether or not to purchase a home, according to Colliers, is finding the right correlation between price, quality and infrastructure, with people increasingly looking to pay even more for properties that really meet their criteria.

Larger two and three-bedroom apartments and houses are becoming the strong points in the sector, according to the latest report, which stated that two-bedroom apartments in particular had seen sales numbers double in the past year. They now account for an impressive 47 per cent of all real estate sold in Bulgaria. A fifth of all these purchases were from investors rather than people looking to move into the properties themselves, which shows the real potential of this market in the country at the moment.


Article by +Peter Mindenhall on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property market activity to increase in 2014

The Bulgarian property market is set to see a rise in activity this year, helping the sector revive itself. Estate agency Adres claims more transactions will take place in 2014, though prices will vary depending on the quality of the property, Novinite.com reported. Increased activity is thanks to more and more buyers enjoying a stable income and cash savings, as the Bulgarian economy strengthens.

Georgi Pavlov, executive director of Adres, explained to the news provider: "Deposit interest rates are expected to drop further in the next 12 months and the decline of real estate prices will stop, which will activate buyers. We expect that a lot of people who have savings accounts will consider investing in real estate, once they note the decrease in interest rates. Property investment is a safe bet, and a possible price hike would make it even more profitable."

Indeed, conditions for investors are becoming even more attractive in Bulgaria. Mr Pavlov claims the market will be predictable and free from any significant risks, Novinite.com explained. Most areas have seen prices bottom out, but even in those places where falls will still occur, they are likely to only be by a few per cent. In sought-after locations, values are expected to start rising.

Like in the UK, a lack of housing stock is helping to strengthen prices. New construction is still scarce, despite high demand. The news provider revealed that between 60 per cent and 70 per cent of apartments in certain buildings are still in the construction phase but have already been sold. During 2014, it is expected, however, that construction in prime neighbourhoods will increase, helping to boost the market.

Regional cities could also perform strongly, after a positive 2013. Bulgarian Properties reported that transactions in these areas grew by 1.42 per cent in the third quarter of last year on an annual basis. Larger regional cities accounted for 53 per cent of total sales, rising to 31,767 transactions from 2012's 30,155. Sofia is one city experiencing considerably activity, with transactions increasing from 4,210 in Q3 2012 to 4,536 in 2013.
Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property values slide in Q3

Reports may be suggesting that Bulgarian property sales are on the up, but new figures based on data from realtors across the country show the average asking price for residential real estate is down. Novinite reported that the third quarter of 2013 saw a marginal decline - the fourth quarter in a row drops have been noted. In prime neighbourhoods, the average decrease stood at 1.8 per cent year-on-year. However, this was greater in towns suffering from high unemployment rates, such as Vidin, Vratsa and Dobrich.

In the capital Sofia, the average asking price stood at BGN 1,444.83 (£631.92) per square metre, while in coastal Varna values were recorded at BGN 1,381.33 per square metre, the news provider revealed. Burgas property ended the third quarter of the year at BGN 1,113.33 per square metre. However, this slide in value was not the result of weak demand. Instead, the drive for a swift sale and quick cash led to sellers accepting low prices. Limited budgets among buyers also kept prices low.

High demand is certainly encouraging for the market overall and regional cities across Bulgaria are witnessing rising levels of activity. Bulgarian Properties reported that Q3 saw transactions continue their upwards trajectory, increasing 1.42 per cent on an annual basis.  Fifty-three per cent of total sales took place in larger regional cities. Overall, Bulgarian Registry Agency data showed 59,475 homes were sold in the country between July and the end of September.

Unsurprisingly, Sofia has been one of the strongest performing cities in terms of transactions, with sales increasing from 4,210 in Q3 2012 to 4,536 in 2013. This represents 7.74 per cent growth - above the average for regional cities. Plovdiv experienced similar conditions, with a rise of 7.64 per cent on an annual basis. This indicates a return of buyers to cities, whereas previously coastal regions have been the main draw for investors. However, these areas are still enjoying success and Burgass witnessed a 23.43 per cent year-on-year during the summer season. Polina Stoykova, chief operations manager and head of research at Bulgarian Properties, believes this is symptomatic of seaside regions at the moment, which are enjoying rising tourist numbers.
Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Regional cities drive Bulgarian property sales

Bulgarian property sales are increasing - albeit slowly - driven by activity in regional cities. Bulgarian Properties reported that transactions continued to follow their upwards trajectory in the third quarter of the year, rising by 1.42 per cent on an annual basis. Bulgarian Registry Agency data showed 59,475 homes were sold in the country between July and the end of September, representing slightly slower growth than in previous quarters.

Bigger regional cities were behind gains, accounting for 53 per cent of total sales in the country during Q3. This is a rise of 5.35 per cent from 30,155 in 2012, to 31,767 in 2013. Sofia has been one of the strongest performers, with transactions increasing from 4,210 in Q3 of last year to 4,536 in 2013. This growth of 7.74 per cent is above the average for regional cities and indicates the return of buyers. Similar conditions were also experienced in Plovdiv, were 7.64 per cent growth was noted on an annual basis.

Nonetheless, it is Burgass that is leading the sales race, with transactions increasing by 23.43 per cent year-on-year during the summer season. Polina Stoykova, chief operations manager and head of research at Bulgarian Properties, claims this is symptomatic of the recovery of the property market in seaside regions and rising tourist numbers. Figures from the Tourist Industry have shown Russian and the Ukrainian tourists are the main holiday markets.

The summer season was certainly a positive one for Bulgarian real estate. A report from Bulgarian National Television showed real estate agents believe transactions to have increased by 20 per cent year-on-year, econ.bg reported. The Bulgarian National Bank also recently noted property transactions increasing by 29,641 year-on-year during the first six months of 2013. Standart revealed that during the first half of the year there were 109,636 real estate deals, most of which involved domestic buyers. This is considerably higher than the 79,995 recorded in the same period in 2012.
Article by +Peter Mindenhall on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Garbage calculation fee method to change in Bulgaria

When considering investing in a property for holiday let, it's important to bear in mind all costs associated with buying and maintaining real estate. As any landlord will tell you, these can soon add up. However, costs could fall for owners of certain Bulgarian properties, as the government has announced that municipalities will have one year to change the way they calculate garbage fees.

During Wednesday's (October 2nd) sitting of the assembly, the Local Taxes and Fees Act was adopted, meaning by January 1st 2015, all municipalities must change their methodology for calculation.The reforms will mean charges will no longer be determined on the basis of tax valuation, the amount of carrying assets or market value of a property, Novinite.com reported. Instead, fees will be calculated on the basis of quantity of rubbish or other parameters disassociated from property value.

Deputy Finance Minister Lyudmila Petkova explained that a working group has already been set up to work on the new garbage fee calculation methodology, BGNES news agency reported.  This will include the National Association of Municipalities in the Republic of Bulgaria and representatives from employers' associations, Novinite.com revealed.

Under the Local Taxes and Fees Act, partial amendments to the tax incentive for vehicles to switch to lower carbon technologies will also be amended. From January 2014 the incentive for vehicles with a catalyst will be dropped, which could affect investor overheads operating in Bulgaria.

Nonetheless, reductions to garbage fees and favourable market conditions are likely to see renewed demand for property. Indeed, a report from Bulgarian National Television last month indicated a rise in sales across the country, with agents claiming transactions increased by 20 per cent during the summer, econ.bg reported. The Bulgarian National Bank has also noted property transactions increasing by 29,641 year-on-year during the first six months of 2013. Standart revealed that during the first half of the year (H1) there were 109,636 real estate deals. This is up considerably from the 79,995 recorded in the same period in 2012.
Article by +James Roberts on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

All signs point upwards for Bulgaria

All signs are pointing to upwards momentum for the Bulgarian property market, with a new report from Bulgarian National Television indicating a rise in sales. Real estate agents claim transactions have increased by 20 per cent this summer compared to 2012, econ.bg reported. Interest is particularly high in the luxury market, it has been claimed, with the southern part of Sofia and the foot of the Vitosha mountain particularly popular during the holiday season.

This comes after the Bulgarian National Bank reported property transactions increasing by 29,641 year-on-year during the first six months of 2013. Standart reported that during the first half of the year (H1) there were 109,636 real estate deals, up from the 79,995 recorded in the same period in 2012. Increased domestic activity is helping to drive this trend.

However, property purchases financed through mortgage loans are falling in the country. It seems Bulgaria is increasingly becoming a cash market, with confidence in banks low. In May 2013, bank deposits of Bulgarians decreased by BGN 12.4 million compared to April. This is the first time this has happened since September 2010 and reflects disillusionment with the financial sector as interest rates fall. A new tax on savings has also caused people to move away from traditional banking options.

Yet the appetite for investment doesn't seem to be too dented in the country, with Varna, Burgas, Plovdiv, Stara Zagora and Blagoevgrad reaping the benefits of increased property purchases. Overseas buyers are also focusing their attention on the Black Sea coast. Sofia's Nadezhda residential district is expected to be popular too, thanks to improved local infrastructure, econ.bg reported.

Two-bedroom apartments are the most in-demand , which make ideal holiday let opportunities. Prices vary between €500 and €1000 per square metre depending on location and property type. Values remain stable, however, with brokers telling Standart that the market has already bottomed out. This has allowed Bulgaria to start to turn things around.

Real estate prices continue to remain reasonable too, making H1's pleasing performance unsurprising for many. Brokers told the newspaper that the market has already bottomed out and things are beginning to turn around.
Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria: Property transactions increase by 29,641 in H1

Bulgarian property transactions increased by 29,641 year-on-year during the first six months of 2013. Figures from the Bulgarian National Bank revealed that during the first half of the year (H1) there were 109,636 real estate deals, up from the 79,995 recorded in the same period in 2012, Standart reported. This is the result of more and more nationals deciding to put their money into bricks and mortar.

In May 2013, bank deposits of Bulgarians decreased by BGN 12.4 million compared to April levels. This is the first time this has happened since September 2010 and is a result of the perceived instability in financial markets. Instead, nationals are preferring to place their cash in non-liquid assets, like real estate. Reductions in interest rates on bank deposits and the introduction of a new tax on savings are also helping to drive this trend, Standart revealed.

Notaries told the newspaper there has been a 150 per cent increase in property sales over the last few months, as people look to capitalise on favourable conditions. Real estate prices continue to remain reasonable too, making H1's pleasing performance unsurprising for many. Brokers told the newspaper that the market has already bottomed out and things are beginning to turn around.

Construction is also increasing and in the second quarter of the year 1,151 residential buildings received permits, amounting to 2,985 residential dwellings. Compared to Q1 this is a 50.7 per cent increase in permits and a 59 per cent increase in dwelling numbers, the National Statistics Institute revealed. In terms of square footage, residential building approvals covered 395,038 square metres, up 43.2 per cent from Q1. It isn't just residential construction that's on the up either, with permits issued for other buildings increasing by 53.8 per cent in the second quarter of the year.

This indicates that confidence is returning to the market and demand for property is such that new developments are warranted - a phenomenon not experienced by saturated European countries like Spain. Consequently, Bulgaria is well placed to recover from the financial crisis and with tourism hot spots like Sunny Beach increasing in popularity, the holiday let market may heat up too.
Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property sales on the rise

Property in Bulgaria has had a strong start to the year, with sales increasing over the first three months. Data from the Bulgarian National Statistics Agency, relayed by Postbank, showed transactions skyrocketed by 23 per cent in Q1, compared to the same period in 2012. Total units sold ended the quarter at 44,174, Standart reported. This is a significant leap from 35,821 units transacted during the same time last year.

Mortgage loans are the most common means through which properties are being obtained, accounting for 13 per cent of all sales. This equates to 5811 units. With Postbank registering an increase in the number of people asking for loans of 25 per cent, activity in the sector is certainly improving. The newspaper explained that 74.5 per cent of these were in Bulgarian lev rate, compared to the year previous when just half were. Postbank expects this to continue and reach a market share of 80 per cent.

This is a pleasing turn around from previous quarters, when the market has remained sluggish. The Global Property Guide reported in February that prices were continuing to slowly decline, causing stagnation - a trend not expected to change any time soon. Figures from the National Statistical Institute showed that in Q3 2012, the average price for existing flats dropped by 2.2 per cent to BGN 881.2 (£384.03 approximately) per square metre.

Real estate in Bulgaria now has a value 38 per cent lower than its Q3 2008 peak, when values stood at BGN 1,481 (£645.43 approximately) per square metre. While it is now cheaper to invest in property in the country, return on investment is unlikely to be quick and holiday lets are sure to be the best way to generate an income. Popular tourist spots like Sunny Beach are still attractive markets for buyers.

However, even the capital Sofia has witnessed significant price drops, with dwelling values falling by 0.6 per cent since 2011 and 41 per cent since peak, the Global Property Guide reported. In February, prices stood at approximately BGN 1,447 (£630.61).
Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property market sluggish

It seems the word to describe Bulgarian property at the moment is sluggish, with statistics showing that prices are continuing to slowly decline. The Global Property Guide reported that with the economy improving only slightly and the housing market remaining fairly stagnant, any change in the sector isn't likely to occur any time soon.

Figures from the National Statistical Institute (NSI) revealed that in Q3 2012, the average price of existing flats fell by 2.2 per cent to BGN 881.2 (£384.03) per square metre. While this decrease is smaller than the 6.1 per cent decline noted in 2011 and the 4.3 per cent fall during the year to Q1 2012, it isn't the performance many in the industry will have been hoping for.

So what does this all mean for investors? Bulgarian real estate prices are now 38 per cent lower than their Q3 2008 peak, when they stood at BGN 1,481 (£645,43 approximately) per square metre. Consequently, potential buyers are able to obtain property at a much cheaper price, but in a sluggish market, any return on investment will not be swift.

What's more, with prices falling across the country, knowing where to invest can also pose significant problems. Even the capital Sofia has witnessed decreasing values, with the average price of a dwelling falling by 0.6 per cent since 2011 and by 41 per cent since the peak, the Global Property Guide reported. Prices now stand at approximately BGN 1,447 (£630.61).

Eighteen provinces also experienced significant price drops in Q3. Values in Montana fell by 13.2 per cent, while Vrasta experienced a 7.3 per cent loss. Pernik property prices also dropped by 7.2 per cent. However, there are areas where moderate gains were noted, including Targovishte (4.5 per cent), Stara Zagora (4.5 per cent) and Veliko Tarnovo (3.5 per cent).

The ease of which European Union citizens can buy property in Bulgaria is now much greater than in years previous, since the Accession Treaty was lifted in January 2012.
Article by +James Roberts on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property prices tipped to rise in Spring

A report has suggested that the stock of Bulgarian property could soon begin to rise, despite a 40 per cent drop in residential building sales in the country since 2008.

This drop saw a large scale price drop which, in turn, encouraged many people to consider real estate in Bulgaria and now new research has predicted that this spring will see the bouncing back of prices.

A report from Bulgarian National Television tipped the next few months of the year to see a rejuvenation, which will appeal to many investors, while it also highlighted where exactly the sales were taking place.

The majority of purchases that took place in the country's capital Sofia were by those who had moved from elsewhere in the nation while the average budget for a property was around €30,000 (£25,721).

Emil Milanov, the director of one real estate firm, was quoted in the report as saying that people were increasingly looking to spend more on property, moving upwards from the €30,000 budget, which would typically buy a small one or two-bedroom apartment.

Indeed, one of the fastest growing markets in the country currently is for three-bedroom apartments, with families in particular keen on this sort of home.

In the capital, the report revealed that buyers are currently looking at a price of as much as €40,000. Larger three-bedroom apartments can cost between €60,000 and €80,000.

In Bulgaria's second city, Plovdiv, prices for property could sell for as little as €15,000 or as much as €80,000.

The Global Property Guide reported last year that prices for property in Bulgaria have fallen dramatically since 2008, meaning there are potential bargains to be had for investors.

It cited a report from the National Statistical Institute which found that property prices in Bulgaria were 38 per cent lower than the Q3 2008 peak of €725 per square metre.

The country's market enjoyed a positive period between 2000 and 2008 before struggling ever since, although signs are there to suggest a rejuvenation.
Article by +Peter Mindenhall on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Historical property in Bulgaria ideal for refurbishment

Bulgaria is increasingly proving itself to be a country worthy of investment, as the tourist industry continues to grow and property prices remain low. In particular, the country is an ideal spot for those looking for refurbishment projects.

Historical property in Bulgaria is an attractive prospect for many investors hoping to pick up abandoned real estate cheaply and turn it into something fantastic. Across the country there is a wealth of abandoned property that could be transformed into holiday homes aimed at those wanting more of an authentic Bulgarian experience, Quest Bulgaria reported. With house prices continuing to fall, now is certainly the time for buyers to strike.

According to the Global Property Guide, prices remain low, creating barriers for those looking for short term returns on investment. However, for buyers with long term projections, abandoned historical property may be just the ticket. Figures from the National Statistical Institute, recounted by the news portal in May, showed that at the beginning of the year, property prices in Bulgaria were 38 per cent lower than their peak level in Q3 2008. Although a slight recovery had been noted by the penultimate quarter of 2012, with declining values in popular destinations like Sofia and Bansko slowing, prices remain affordable.

This is vital when taking on a refurbishment project, ensuring more capital is available to plough back into the historical property. Quest Bulgaria explained that most of this stock will be found in rural areas and investment will help to regenerate these environments, with many villages abandoned as residents flocked to cities and towns for work.

Nevertheless, there are lots of things that must be considered when buying historical homes, such as local regulations and availability of craftsmen. In some instances, properties could have been constructed using skills that are no longer widespread and specialist craftsmen may need to be brought in. This must all be factored into budgets. However, labour and materials are relatively cheap in Bulgaria and restoration can be done in most cases without breaking the bank.
Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Russian-speaking buyers snapping up Bulgarian property

Property in Bulgaria is proving popular with Russian-speaking buyers. Ivan Goranov, expert in real estates, explained to Focus News Agency that “interest of foreign citizens in the Bulgarian holiday, mountain and seaside properties remains relatively big”.

Russian and Romanian investors are increasingly snapping up seaside properties in the country, while Macedonians and Greeks look to poplar mountain sites, including Bansko and Pamporovo. “The living conditions in Bulgaria, which even during the crisis are more stable compared to our neighbours’, attract the foreign buyers,” Mr Goranov said.

It seems that renewed interest in Bulgaria from overseas markets is also the result of a good marketing drive on behalf of the country’s tourism industry. Advertising to attract foreign visitors and investors has improved, helping to drive sustained demand. What’s more, the government is committed to improving the country’s infrastructure, which has helped to drive property sales, Mr Goranov claimed to the news agency.

However, property prices in the country remain low, according to the Global Property Guide. While this is good news for buyers, those looking for a quick return on investment face the same barriers that can be found across Europe. In May, the news portal reported that National Statistical Institute figures recorded during the year to end-Q1 2012 revealed that the average price of existing flats in Bulgaria dropped by 4.3 per cent, after price falls of 6.4 per cent, 6.1 per cent and 6.2 per cent over the year to the previous three quarters.

At the beginning of the year, property prices in Bulgaria stood a shocking 38 per cent lower than their peak level in the penultimate quarter of 2008. Nevertheless, by Q3 2012, a recovery had been noted, with prices beginning to stabilise. In Sofia, declining values slowed and the annual price drop in Bansko was under ten per cent. Polina Stoykova, chief operations manager and head of research of Bulgarian Properties, explained that this is a “good sign for stabilisation of the property market in our most popular ski resort”.
Article by +James Roberts on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria attracting Moscovite buyers

Moscovites looking for property abroad are heading to Bulgaria, according to the Focus Information Agency.

Research has shown that every fifth resident of the Russian city now cites the eastern European country as their preferred destination to purchase a vacation home.

Approximately 19 per cent of Moscovites also believe Bulgaria is the best place to buy a country house.

This is the result of reasonable prices in the country, with warm climate cited as the second most important criterion for Russians when buying a property in Bulgaria .

With the country's property market experiencing a price slump at the moment, this surge of interest will be good news for those looking to sell real estate in the country or rent out holiday property.

Tourism in Bulgaria is continuing to be relatively strong, with September enjoying 365,776 visitors from Europe.

Germans currently make up the majority of Bulgaria's tourism, with 102,651 taking a trip to the country for a holiday and recreation.
Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian real estate offers "exceptional value"

Overseas investors searching for a property in Bulgaria can get a lot for their money, it has been asserted.

An article for Quest Bulgaria, an online property and lifestyle magazine, stated that "much of the property available offers exceptional value for new investors".

The publication explained that, even though they have risen in recent years, house and land prices are still relatively low compared with the rest of Europe.

There is also a good deal of choice on the Bulgarian real estate market, with the news provider pointing out investors can either opt for a fully modernised home, or choose a house in need of renovation but that can be acquired at a "rock bottom" price.

Last month, Novinite reported on figures published by Arco Real Estate, which suggested now could be one of the best times to buy a property in Bulgaria, as prices in the capital Sofia are at their lowest point for five years.

Apartment values have now fallen below  €1,000 (£800) per sq m on average, although the news agency revealed there are some districts where residential assets can be picked up for considerably less.
 
Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Sofia house prices hit lowest level in 5 years

The cost of buying property in Bulgaria's capital Sofia has fallen to its lowest point since 2007.

Novinite - the Sofia news agency - reported on a study conducted by Arco Real Estate, which found the average price of apartments in the city has dropped below €1,000 (£793.88) per sq m.

In certain districts of Sofia - particularly around the north and north-eastern edges of the city - apartments can be picked up for as little as €433 per sq m, representing a 19 per cent annual decline.

Overall, the real estate consultancy revealed residential property prices in Sofia have slipped by six per cent in the last year.

It is not only Bulgarians who appear to be benefiting from the reduction in house prices, with Standart reporting earlier this week that Russian buyers are increasingly interested in properties in the country's cities.

Sofia, Burgas, Varna and Plovdiv are among the targets for Russian investors, realtors at the ADDRESS property agency told the news provider.
 
Article by +Peter Mindenhall on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Russian buyers targeting Bulgarian property

Bulgaria is a popular destination among Russian property buyers, according to one newspaper in the country.

Novinite - the Sofia News Agency - reported on an article published by the Rossiyskaya Gazeta, which suggested the price of real estate assets in Bulgaria is one of the major factors attracting Russian investors.

The agency quoted the Russian paper as saying: "The properties worth up to €50,000 (£39,337) are about 80 per cent of the properties on sale in Bulgaria, and it is very profitable to invest with these prices."

It also pointed out that more Russians than ever before are considering buying real estate overseas, as it has become more affordable and therefore opened up the market to purchasers in the middle classes.

Earlier this month, Novinite reported on figures released by Bulgarian real estate agency Foros, which stated British property owners in the country are increasingly selling their assets to Russians.

Although Russian buyers have typically favoured the south Black Sea coast, the organisation revealed they are also moving into the mountain resorts and other locations along the Black Sea's northern coast.
 
Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Russian buyers 'entering Bulgarian housing market'

There has been a rise in the number of Russians buying property in Bulgaria , which is helping support the country's housing market.

Speaking to The New York Times, Stanislav Petrov, sales manager for Select Properties Bulgaria, stated Russians now account for around 80 per cent of foreign investors in the nation's real estate sector.

He told the news provider approximately 15 per cent of transactions were completed by overseas buyers in the second quarter of this year, an increase on the eight per cent recorded in the same period in 2009.

International investors are targeting Bulgaria's coastal areas, as well as the foothills of Vitosha Mountain, in their search for property, according to Mr Petrov.

Last month, manager at Bulgarian Property Experts Gemma Tippler commented that interest in the country's real estate sector is "hitting all-time highs".

She added housing values are expected to increase in the coming years, particularly if Bulgaria is accepted into the European Union.
 
Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Investors 'can take advantage' of demand for renovated Bulgarian homes

There is significant demand for homes in Bulgaria that have been renovated to British standards, which presents opportunities for potential investors.

Gemma Tippler, manager at Bulgarian Property Experts, explained those with the capital to invest in Bulgarian real estate can either buy a house that requires work and do it up themselves, or pick up a newly-restored dwelling.

Whichever option they choose, Ms Tippler is confident buyers will take advantage of this new trend.

"This leaves a new spot in the market for investors to jump in and be able to offer fully-renovated houses, at low prices, with Bulgaria offering some of the lowest labour and material costs in the EU at the moment," she enthused.

Ms Tippler added property in Bulgaria is also cheaper to acquire than assets in other European nations, which only enhances its appeal as an investment option.

According to the latest Global House Price Index published by Global Property Guide, the value of residential real estate in the nation dropped by 6.21 per cent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2012.
 
Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Interest in Bulgarian property 'at an all-time high'

The level of interest in real estate investment in Bulgaria is reaching the highest level ever experienced in the country.

So says Gemma Tippler, manager at Bulgarian Property Experts, who noted "very encouraging sales records" have been posted so far in 2012, while the cost of buying an abode is still very low.

Last month, Global Property Guide published figures from the country's National Statistics Institute, which revealed real estate values are currently 38 per cent below the peak recorded in the third quarter of 2008.

Ms Tippler stressed now is the time to get into the Bulgarian real estate market, as house prices are expected to rise considerably when the nation joins the European Union as a full member and adopts the euro.

She explained potential purchasers have two main options: "[To] buy and renovate and make a quick return on your investment, or to get a foot on the property ladder and buy cheap property or land to sit on for the future."
Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Is Bulgaria's property market turning a corner?

There are indications some sectors of Bulgaria's real estate market are beginning to recover, albeit slowly.

A report by Global Property Guide highlighted Sofia as one of the few places in the country to see average home prices rise, citing figures from the National Statistics Institute (NSI) which revealed values were up 0.8 per cent over the year that ended in the first quarter of 2012.

However, the picture for Bulgaria as a whole is not quite as bright, with national property prices sliding by 4.3 per cent in the same period, the NSI figures showed.

According to the news provider, this still represents an improvement, as real estate values were previously declining more sharply.

A recent article in the Bulgaria property and lifestyle magazine Quest pointed out there are several reasons to be optimistic about the prospects for the nation's housing market - particularly following a change in the law.

From January 1st this year, it became possible for foreign nationals from the EU to own land and real estate in Bulgaria. Previously, any overseas purchasers had to conduct the transaction through a company.
 
Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property is "excellent value"

Bulgaria is a good place to consider investing in property overseas and it attracts buyers for a number of reasons.

This is the assertion of Paul Watchorn, director of thebulgarianpropertyfinder website, who explained the nation "remains excellent value in terms of what you can actually get for your money, balanced with the condition of the country as a whole".

He added that the cost of living is relatively cheap, while the range of facilities - like healthcare and education - on offer is "very good by comparison to other countries with the same low costs".

As a result, buying real estate in Bulgaria can be an attractive option for people who want to move abroad and enjoy a better lifestyle.  

Recent figures published by Global Property Guide indicated the Bulgarian property market has started to turn a corner. Although prices fell by 6.21 per cent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2012, this is an improvement on the 10.2 per cent decline recorded in the same period in 2011.
Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property market 'starting to pick up'

The real estate market in Bulgaria has begun to stabilise, with a rise in the number of transactions concluded recorded by local agents.

Figures released by property consultancy Yavlena revealed the volume of deals climbed by 22 per cent in 2011, compared to a year earlier, the Sofia Echo reported.

However, the organisation noted the majority of the sales were for agricultural land, with the number of purchases made with a mortgage climbing by just 4.2 per cent in the same period.

Yavlena also pointed out many people seeking a property in Bulgaria are keen to buy in the lower price bracket of €25,000 (£20,624) to €50,000, although there is little supply at this end of the market.

Meanwhile, data recently published by Bulgarian Properties indicated residential real estate values in Bulgaria are stabilising, with the firm recording positive month-on-month growth in Varna and Bankso in March.

The cost of buying a home in Sofia and Sunny Beach fell marginally in the same period, while the Bulgarian capital was the only location surveyed that posted an annual increase in property prices.
 


Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property values 'down significantly'

The value of real estate in Bulgaria has fallen by approximately 50 per cent since its peak in 2008, with both ski and beach resorts hit the hardest by the downturn in the market.

This is according to chief operations manager of Bulgarian Properties Polina Stoykova, who explained that, despite the slump in prices, there is reason to be optimistic about some regions in the nation.

She highlighted the ski resort of Borovets, which has seen a rise in interest from investors, although prices slipped by an average of 18 per cent in 2011.

Another location that appears to be on the radar of those seeking real estate in Bulgaria is Sunny Beach on the Black Sea coast, where Russian buyers are helping to support the market for holiday homes.

However, the recent Knight Frank Global House Price Index did not record such dramatic falls in property values in Bulgaria during 2011. According to data published earlier this month, the cost of buying a home in the nation fell by an average of 6.2 per cent between the final quarter of 2010 and the same period 12 months later.


Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria property prices fall in 2011

New research has revealed the value of Bulgarian property fell by between five and ten per cent in 2011, compared to 2010.

Propertywire reported on the data, which was gathered from brokers operating in the nation, noting that the situation is not expected to change over the course of the next 12 months.

Operations director at a Bulgarian real estate firm Polina Stoikova told the publication that the greatest demand is for properties in a low price bracket that are located in major cities.

Bansko, a ski resort, is one of the places that has experienced some of the biggest falls, with real estate values there sliding by 25 per cent during 2011, the news provider revealed.

In addition, an article in Focus earlier this month cited a study published by Presa Daily, which found home loans in Bulgaria have become more accessible.

According to the research, last year it was possible to obtain finance of between 80 per cent and 90 per cent of a residential property's value, while interest rates on mortgages have fallen and are now close to their 2008 level.
 


Article by +James Roberts on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property prices drop

The third quarter of 2011 saw property prices in Bulgaria fall, the latest government figures show.

Quest Bulgaria reported on the data, noting that average residential real estate values dropped by 0.8 per cent in the three months between July and September.

Overall, house prices have slipped by 6.1 per cent since the same time last year, the news provider noted, adding that the Pleven, Yambol and Smolyan regions of the country have experienced the biggest declines.

In the recent Doing Business 2012 report published by the International Finance Corporation and World Bank, Bulgaria was highlighted for making it easier for people to register property in the nation by "offering expedited procedures".

Meanwhile, the country was also noted for its efforts to improve trading across borders and to assist with resolving insolvency, with the report stating that these measures improve the business environment.

The introduction of an online system for the submission of customs and declaration forms was one of the reasons given for its higher ranking in the trading across borders category.
 


Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian house prices plummet

Residential real estate in Bulgaria has seen one-third of its value wiped out since 2008, new research has revealed.

The Sofia Echo reported on a study carried out by estate agency Yavlena, which showed that property prices in the country have dropped by 20.92 per cent compared to 2008, with values declining by 8.5 per cent since last year.

Manager at the firm Strakhil Ivanov told the publication that the bottom end of the market - homes priced between €25,000 (£21,744) and €50,000 - are attracting the most attention from buyers.

Last month, International Business Times highlighted data published by Bulgarian Properties, which indicated that one of the nation's ski resorts - Bankso - had seen real estate values plummet by 50 per cent since 2008.

The publication revealed that apartments could be acquired for an average of €760 per sq m during the first eight months of this year, with prices taking a further ten per cent tumble in May.
 


Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Increased activity reported in Bulgarian real estate

There has been a significant rise in the number of new mortgages issued in Bulgaria, it has been revealed.

According to research from Credit Center, a consultancy based in Sofia, the number of home loans awarded in the second quarter of the year was 18 per cent higher than in the first three months of 2011, the Sofia News Agency reported.

Chief executive officer of Credit Center Tihomir Toshev told the press organisation that this bodes well for the Bulgarian real estate sector .

He explained that buyers and sellers have been active in all areas of the market, although the most popular kind of property is currently a two-bedroom apartment.

Mr Toshev added that "receiving credit is becoming easier and easier", which has enabled more people to purchase a home in Bulgaria.

Last month, the Sofia Echo noted that there was a 27 per cent annual rise in the number of real estate transactions in the country during the first half of the year.
 


Article by +James Roberts on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgaria's property prices fall in Q2

The value of residential properties in Bulgaria dropped during the second quarter of this year, new data has revealed, compared to the same period in 2010.

Figures from the National Statistics Institute (NSI) were published by the Sofia Echo, showing that average real estate prices fell by 6.4 per cent during this time.

Meanwhile, the NSI research revealed that values declined by 1.6 per cent between April and June compared to the three months from January to March this year.

The publication noted that the largest quarterly drop was registered in Veliko Turnovo with 5.5 per cent shaved off housing values, while Sofia saw its residential prices slide by 2.1 per cent.

However, there were locations that saw real estate values rise, with Varna, Rousse and Blagoevgrad all reporting upward movements in their property markets.

This data is in contrast to one expert's predictions earlier this month that housing prices in the nation would increase by between five and six per cent over the course of the year.

Speaking to Novinite.com, chief executive officer of the Arceland asset management fund Curtis Coward stated that the country would experience "a stable annual growth rate" in its property markets in 2011.
 


Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Rising real estate sales reported in Bulgaria

The Bulgarian property market has improved since the beginning of the year, it has been reported.

Speaking to the Sofia Echo, chief operating officer of estate agency Bulgarian Properties Polina Stoykova revealed that real estate sales in the country have increased. This is attributed to falling prices that have attracted investors, as well as an upturn in Bulgaria's economy as a whole.

Ms Stoykova went on to state that Sofia and destinations along the coast of the Black Sea are the most popular locations for real estate transactions, accounting for 40 per cent of the total volume of sales in the nation between January and June.

The publication also cited data from Bulgaria's Registry Agency, which recorded a 27 per cent rise in the number of property deals carried out in the first half of the year, compared to the same six months in 2010.

Earlier this month, Curtis Coward, chief executive officer of the Arceland asset management fund, told the Sofia News Agency that he anticipates real estate values in Bulgaria to rise steadily and at a sustainable rate.
 


Article by +James Roberts on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian property prices 'will experience stable growth'

Real estate values in Bulgaria are set to grow at a steady annual rate of five to six per cent over the coming years, one expert has claimed.

In an interview with Novinite.com (Sofia News Agency), chief executive officer of the Arceland asset management fund Curtis Coward described this as a sustainable figure.

He went on to recommend farmland as a good real estate investment in Bulgaria , commenting that the country has "an enormous potential that is unfulfilled at this point in terms of its agricultural development".

Mr Coward also told the news provider that in time, more residential housing stock will need to be constructed to replace the buildings in poor condition, especially around big cities such as Sofia.

In the Knight Frank Global House Price Index for the first quarter of this year, Bulgaria saw property values decline by 5.6 per cent year-on-year, putting it in 44th position in the table of 50 nations.
 


Article by +Danny Bance on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Residential prices fall in Bulgaria, report shows

Residential property prices in Bulgaria fell in the majority of regions in the fourth quarter of 2010, although there were some regional differences.

Home values in the capital Sofia fell by 9.4 per cent year-on-year and by 5.2 per cent compared to the previous quarter, while in Varna prices dropped seven per cent compared to 2009 figures.

However, the Black Sea location saw values climb 1.9 per cent compared to the previous three-month period, indicating a gradual return to strength.

The news could tempt a number of investors to look for property in Bulgaria, with some regions showing signs of improvement.

According to the analysis, by Raiffeisen Real Estate, the sluggish economic recovery, lack of jobs and rising inflation is affecting the domestic market.

“Buyers expect to get the best possible proposal within a pre-determined budget,” it said.

Meanwhile, earlier research from Bulgarian Properties found that over the past decade, residential property prices in Bulgaria have risen by an average of 200 per cent.


Article by +Steve Binge on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com

Bulgarian prices up 200% over past decade

Over the past decade, residential property prices in Bulgaria have risen by an average of 200 per cent.

New research from Bulgarian Properties has revealed that the last ten years have been particularly successful for the country's market.

It could prompt a growing number of investors to look at property in Bulgaria , with the research suggesting that prices will continue on their upward trend.

The figures are based on data from the Bulgarian National Statistics Institute (NSI) and the Bulgarian Registry Agency.

"We have witnessed a dynamic decade for the real estate market in Bulgaria," Polina Stoykova, operational director of Bulgarian Properties told Overseas Property Professional.

"One which brought an increase in prices, a higher volume of deals, a boom in construction activity … and then a sharp drop in the last two years."

Analysts told the news provider that they expected the number of deals taking place in the country will increase as 2011 progresses, indicating that the recession which has gripped the country is over.


Article by +Peter Mindenhall on behalf of Propertyshowrooms.com