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About registration of
real estate

Bulgarian legislation allows foreign individuals and legal entities to purchase real estate. The list of documents required for registration of real estate depends on the specific transaction. But in any case, for the registration of real estate, the buyer, a foreign individual, must provide a foreign passport. Legal entity – constituent documents for the company. If the buyer cannot personally come to Bulgaria to process all the papers, then it is necessary to issue a power of attorney at the Bulgarian Consulate to conduct the transaction and sign a notarial act to the person who will be engaged in the registration of property.

Real estate can be registered as property from the moment of the release of the document “Act 15” (the act on the readiness of the real estate object for commissioning). According to the laws of Bulgaria, transactions with real estate objects are executed only on the territory of the country in the presence of the acquirer or his authorized representative (a power of attorney for the transaction is required, obtained at the Bulgarian Consulate). All documents are issued in Bulgarian. It is possible to add several owners to the contract. The list of owners is compiled by the buyer himself.

Before making a transaction, it is necessary to obtain a state assessment of the value of the object from the territorial tax service. The tax assessment of the object is usually 50% of the actual transaction price. This amount of assessment will be registered in the notarial act and in the future, it will be the basis for taxation and payment of state duty. There is no need for such papers as a certificate from the BTI, an extract from the house book in Bulgaria. In addition, it is necessary to obtain an extract from the state register of real estate about the absence of encumbrances of the object (prohibition on sale, open court cases, seizure of property), i.e. about its legal purity. This certificate confirms that the object belongs to the seller. The certificate also reflects the presence or absence of a mortgage on this real estate object, the right to use the object by third parties.

The final contract (Notarial act) must be certified by a notary. The notary’s jurisdiction extends to the area where the object being sold is located. The seller submits to the notary an extract from the state register of immovable property on the absence of encumbrances of the object. With the participation of a licensed translator, a legal document is drawn up – a Notarial act. From the moment of signing this document, the buyer becomes the full owner. After the notarial act is drawn up, certified and signed by both parties to the contract, this document is transferred by the notary to the district court. The judge enters the fact of the transfer of property into the State Register of Real Estate within one day. After that, the buyer receives a certified title document, which will also contain a note about entering into this register.

A notarial act is the main document that certifies your right to own real estate! Within 7 days from the date of purchase of the property (after receiving a notarial act from the court), foreign individuals must register with the municipality to obtain an individual code according to BULSTAT (Bulgarian Statistical Institute). This operation takes 2-3 weeks and does not require the presence of the owner. Within 2 months from the date of acquisition of real estate and receipt of a notarial act, the owner should submit a declaration of acquisition of real estate. The declaration is submitted to the territorial tax inspectorate for the future calculation of real estate tax and utility payments. The declaration provides a detailed description of the property: the year of construction of the object, the construction materials used, design features, area, number of floors, purchase price. All of the above activities are usually carried out by the management company of the complex.

About visas to Bulgaria

You need a visa to travel to Bulgaria. Property owners in Bulgaria and their immediate relatives who have a notarized certificate of ownership have the right to obtain a multiple-entry visa with a total stay of 180 days per year: every six months for 90 days. When applying for a visa for the first time, property owners can apply for a one-year multiple-entry visa, and for subsequent ones – for a three-year one.

The right to a three-year visa is granted to the owners of real estate in Bulgaria, their spouses and direct heirs under the age of 21 (a copy of the birth and/or marriage certificate must be provided). Third parties can also obtain a visa on the basis of a notarial act – only a single-entry visa will be issued. This requires a residence permit certified by a Russian notary for the required period.

At a government meeting on January 25, 2012, it was decided that until the date of the country’s full accession to the Schengen area, Bulgaria will unilaterally apply the Schengen Rules. Holders of valid single or long-term Schengen visas, as well as residence permits issued by member countries will have the right to enter and stay in the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria without a Bulgarian visa. The permitted stay at the entrance to Bulgaria is three months within each six-month period, regardless of the fact that a longer period may be specified in the visa.

About taxes

Real estate tax is levied on all buildings and land plots located on the territory of the country that are intended for living or doing business. The tax is paid regardless of whether the property is used or not.

After the purchase of the apartment, the buyer must pay the tax from the beginning of the month following the month of purchase. The tax is determined on the basis of the tax assessment of the apartment as of January 1 of the corresponding year. The tax assessment of residential real estate is determined depending on the type of real estate, location, area, construction and wear and is reported to taxpayers.

Also, the owner of the property annually pays a tax on household waste together with the real estate tax. The total amount of tax and tax on household waste is 0.3% per year from the tax assessment of your apartment and rarely exceeds 100 euros per year. The tax is paid in four equal installments until March 31, June 30, September 30 and November 30. Companies and individuals who pay the tax once before April 30 receive a 5% discount from the tax amount.

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