These guidelines are meant for guidance only and describe a straightforward purchase scenarios. However this information is not meant to replace proper legal advice, which we always insist you take.
Acquiring property in Bulgaria is a simple and straightforward process. Foreign non-residents can only purchase a structure (apartment, a condo unit, etc.) on a plot of land and cannot acquire freehold land directly. However in 2006, the Bulgarian cabinet decided that foreigners in Bulgaria will be able to buy and inherit landed property. The changes will take place seven years after membership into the EU in January 2007, i.e. in 2014.
Citizens of the EU States are exempted from the 7-year suspension period and are entitled to acquire land, provided that they fall into any of the following two categories: if they reside continuously in Bulgaria, or if they are self-employed persons having permanent residence in Bulgaria and carry out agricultural activity in the country.
At present, there is an alternative option – to form a Bulgarian registered company, with the buyer as sole owner and director (the buyer could choose to add other directors, e.g., his spouse).
To set up a company to acquire property is not unusual, and there are realtors who offer this as part of the package.
Steps in registering Property in Bulgaria
1. The sketch of the estate is drafted by the respective Municipality
2. Obtain a tax valuation of the property
3. Issuance of certificate of good standing for seller and buyer
4. Obtain a Non-Encumbrance certificate from the Real Estate Register
5. Obtain a tax clearance certificate
6. The notary executes the transfer deed
7. Registration of the notarized deed at the Registry
8. Parties receive a copy of the registered deed
Find detailed info on registering property in Bulgaria HERE.