Bulgarian Property 2013: a year of great change?

Bulgarian Property 2013: a year of great change?

Ten years ago, a square meter of housing in Bulgaria cost only €200, by 2008 it rose to almost €700, and by 2013 dropped to €442, according to ee24.com.

If the year 2008 put an end to the growth of real estate prices and sharply brought the market down, the 2013 also has a chance to be a turning point, but with a tendency to rise in prices. This conclusion is supported by the available statistical data and the expert opinions.

Real estate prices in Bulgaria
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Look at the statistics, provided by Bulgarian National Statistical Institute. In 2012 the price of square meter of property in Bulgaria fell by only €8. In the passing 2013 the price fluctuations lie within the range that does not exceed the statistical error. In the first quarter of 2013 the square meter of housing in Bulgaria worth €443,2, in the second - €443, in the third - €442,3. At the same houses and apartments in Sofia rose by €12.

It is expected that in 2014 the housing prices in Bulgaria will rise by at least 10%, which will serve not only the difference between the supply and demand, but also the introduction of new building standards. The decision to grant a residence permit to the buyers of expensive real estate that Bulgaria has taken in the past year, may also affect the market.

Russians in 2013 remained the main foreign buyers of real estate in Bulgaria. Thus, according to the company "Bulgarian Properties", Russian citizens accounted for at least 40% of purchases of property in Bulgaria. In the town of Pomorie they even have an area that locals call the Little Moscow. It is one of the largest Russian-speaking diasporas in Bulgaria, estimating about 5 thousand people.

Opinions of the ee24.com portal's experts

Milen Yankov, Managing Director of "Bolgarstroy - CC BG Estates":

"Last year and a half there was a very good trend for an increase in demand and transactions on a good, decent and even expensive real estate. I can say that in 2011 the average value of the property that we sold was €74,000, in 2012 - €81,000, now it is €97,000, and by the end of 2013 it will probably be more than €100,000."

Nikola Stoyanov, Managing Director of company "Chobanov and Stoyanov":

"The last two years the market was stable, and in some places, such as Sunny Beach, Sozopol, Sofia, prices begin to rise. On the Sunny Beach in 2013 elite real estate increased by 4%, in Sofia - by 2%."

Julia Lozovskaya, chief editor of "Your property overseas" (magazine):

"In a period of stagnation, in the year of 2011, you could sometimes found the properties with good views for sale on the secondary market for €25,000 at the Bulgarian Black Sea coast, which were so cheap because they were selling urgently, mostly by the British. The market was quickly absorbing such cheap and liquid proposals. The low price segment is always in demand, but you can now forget about the apartments of €25,000 with the sea view from the window. Today in order to buy something standing and pleasing your eye, you'll need to increase the budget by half.

The average price of sold apartments in Sunny Beach in the Q3 is €570 per sq.m. compared to €490 for the same period in 2012 and €550 in the previous quarter. The average price of purchased apartments in the Q3 is €33,700."

Antonia Wirth, managing partner of real estate agency Crystal Realty (Bulgaria), member of the international board of FIABCI (International Real Estate Federation):

"What has happened this year:

  • new trend in demand from the Russians: they buy not only for leasure, but in order to move abroad;
  • increased interest in buying property in order to obtain a residence permit from buyers of retirement age (which is associated with special programs of the Government of Bulgaria), as well as from young educated professionals in the field of computer technologies;
  • there is a tendency for the opening of Russian schools and kindergartens;
  • Russian communities appear in towns and villages, such as "Little Moscow" in Pomorie;
  • Russian stores are being opened, such as "Birch" retail chain, Russian newspapers and magazines are being published;
  • business is actively developing, there are new banks, restaurants and car repairs.

Russian investors:

  • buy land, mainly on the first line of the Black Sea coast;
  • rent motels for their employees;
  • lease hunting grounds and agricultural lands;
  • buy or rent children's camps;
  • participate in the financing of major recreation facilities and social services;
  • invest in the health sector;
  • invest in the resort towns of Sandanski, Hissar, Velingrad.

Dynamics of the number of deals in cities on the Black Sea coast in 2012-2013:

  • Pomorie +20%
  • Burgas +13%
  • Varna +11%
  • Nessebar -13%
  • Tsarevo -13%
  • In general, on the coast +11%

Bulgaria has retained the first place in terms of demand and the number of purchases by the Russians. And if you believe the statistics, interest in the coming year will only increase. Because there is no other place in the world where Russian people could feel at home more than in Bulgaria."