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Buying an apartment
 
 
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essexboy
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 9:39 am 
Post subject: Buying an apartment
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Hi all, I was looking at buying an apartment near sunny beach, through an estate agent, are there any pitfalls to look out for? Apart from the obvious ones, has anybody on here bought an apartment or lives in one that can give more information please.
Many thanks
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Seedy
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 1:36 pm 
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"Apart from the obvious ones"? You'd be amazed at how un-obvious things can be to some people. Not knowing what you feel is obvious, it's a bit tricky to answer the question - apart from asking who on earth would willingly buy an apartment in Sunny Beach, of course.... Wink Very Happy
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essexboy
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 2:13 pm 
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Hi seedy, thanks for your reply, I'm going through the process of buying a house in radovets, which I intended to refurbish with the idea of holiday let's, but the first thing anyone in the uk asks is 'how close to the beach is it'...so I though about buying an apartment or studio near sunny beach, because the prices look relatively cheap and the closeness to the beach means I can let it out during peak season. The property's I have looked at state an annual 'management fee' of about €450, just wondered if there were any 'hidden' costs that only come to light when you have signed on the dotted line.  
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Seedy
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:09 pm 
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I'd suggest that you clarify just what this "management fee" covers; without knowing the property or "manager" it's unclear if that covers the maintenance of the apartment/complex but I'd suspect that it may not. You also need to be sure that there is a Sinking Fund in place - a lot of SB property was shoddily-built, and sooner or later even the best-built property will need some major work doing. Getting all the owners to cough up annual maintenance is an impossible task - believe me, I know - and hoping that they'll stump up for serious remedial works is a mug's game.

There was quite a bit of jiggery-pokery involving SB complexes in the past and I'd certainly tread warily if I were you. Bear in mind that a lot of people bought property there with the same idea that you have; the fact that apartments are still cheap tells you that this may not be the golden goose that it might appear...
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essexboy
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:18 pm 
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Hi seedy, yes very good response from you, I hadn't looked at it that way, basically apartments were built in 2009 and I guess in 2018 the fact that they are selling at €9500 tells me that there isn't exactly a 'property boom' in bulgaria. I will email the estate agent for more info tomorrow , and get back in here with their response.
Again, many thanks seedy.
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Seedy
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:45 pm 
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Sunny Day 6, by any chance? Wink
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essexboy
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:47 pm 
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Yes seedy I think you might be right there.  
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Seedy
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 8:06 pm 
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Well, at that price I'd suspect that it is a tiny studio, probably around the 30m2 mark or not much bigger. If I were you I wouldn't touch it with a barge-pole: the situation MAY have changed but the last I heard several of the SDs, including 6, had no Act 16 - or even Act 15!

There's usually a trickle of people trying to get out from under the SD complexes; it dies down for a while because most/all the potential buyers find out that they'd be buying a LOT of future headaches but then a fresh crop of hopefuls shows up and the merry-go-round starts up again. Some take the bait and then sell asap, usually at a loss.

SD6 is also hardly on the sea-front, to put it mildly! Very Happy

The "good" news is that, I believe, the "management fee" is probably the maintenance fee; I don't think that SD6 actually has a "management" per se.

To be brutally honest, many people have bought property in BG looking to make a bob or three through holiday rentals - I'd be happy to be proved wrong but I've never heard of anyone even breaking even at that game. Depending on how much you have to spend, you'd do a LOT better buying a one-bedroom apartment in one of the major cities and renting it out full-time - you won't get rich but if you do the job properly (no easy task) you'll get a better return than you will from a bank...
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Moscow_Wolf
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:35 pm 
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There is next to no money to be made by buying to let a small Studio on the Black Sea. My advice would be, forget it. Just my opinion of course.  
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essexboy
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2019 8:52 pm 
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Hi gents, I'm still here, sorry for the delay in answering to this thread but I'm generally still waiting for brexit to happen before I buy in bulgaria....but I have been showing some interest in a studio on sunny day 6 it does not have act 16 but has act 15, is this good or bad? The aim is to not live there full time yet, but st some stage I will want to live there full time untill I find a house to buy. Can anyone point me in the direction of these acts 15 and 16 so I can try to understand their implications. Many thanks
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essexboy
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:45 pm 
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Usually Act 16 is the document most awaited by the new owners of the property. In everyday practice Act 16 is used as a general term instead of certificate of habitation, but there is a difference between the two terms and they must be differentiated depending on the category of construction. If we are talking about constructions from I-III category (highways and roads, hydro technical facilities, production sites, buildings and facilities for public use, etc.) Act 16 is issued by the relevant state committee and ascertains the suitability for use of the construction (part/stage of it). Based on Act 16 the relevant regional directorate for national construction supervision issues the Certificate of Habitation. However, when speaking of construction from IV-VI category (residential and mix-use residential buildings, villas, etc) there is no Act 16 but Certificate of Commissioning by the relevant chief architect at the relevant municipality.

This Certificate of Habitation/Certificate of Commissioning is the final act for the construction of a building and it certifies that the building is suitable to be lived in.

No Act 16/Certificate of Commissioning can be issued if there is found any disparity between the actually executed building works and the approved projects.

In any case, the lack of Certificate of Habitation/Certificate of Commissioning of a building is an indication that something is not right with the documents. This means one of the following:
• there is a disparity between the approved projects and the executed construction works or
• this could be a building that has been constructed outside any approved projects and without it being legalized it can’t be lived in.
  
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essexboy
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:47 pm 
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I found this on the internet, seems to suggest that residential and mix use property's do not need an Act 16 ( I may be interpreting that wrong)
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Seedy
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:38 am 
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Okay - I'll try to keep this short Smile

For projects like SD6 you need Act 16*. I'd say, in a nutshell, don't touch SD - or anywhere in/near SB in general - unless it's a too-good-to-miss offer, but bear in mind that will only be because the owner can't shift it at all. SD6 hasn't been able to get Act 16 for over 10 years, due to the shenanigans of the investor/builders - in this case a chap called Chavdar Alexandrov, IIRC. Let's just say that he is loaded (in more ways than one Wink ) and isn't the kind of "businessman" you'd want to get on the wrong side of. Cool There is, or at least was, no legal sewage connection to SD6 and, since it has no Act 16, no legal water or power connections either. Living there is actually illegal and it's not worth insuring an apartment there because you'd just be giving the insurers a Get Out Of Jail Free card.

Be VERY careful of anything like a certificate from the local Chief Architect - I know one VERY big (and expensive) complex in Sofia where such a certificate was issued a number of years ago (following a large bung to the Chief Architect from the "investor", ie the company funding and organising the construction). Sadly(?) the CA in question has since dropped off his perch and the local mayor is now threatening to rescind the dodgy Certificate, even though about 4,000 people have been living there for the last ten years or more.

If you have the money for it and can afford to treat the whole thing as a bet that you can easily lose your dough on, then maybe think about it - otherwise you'd be very wise to steer well clear. The Brexit issue may muddy the waters also.

*Everyone stills says "Act 16", just like "Road Tax" and "MOT (even though there hasn't been a Ministry of Transport since 1970) in the UK; it's actually correctly called Certificate of Habitation (for residential blocks).

.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 8:35 pm 
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Hi seedy, I'm relieved that was the short version....lol. Many thanks for your comprehensive reply, the property is on eBay and I think it's cheap, I'm absolutely certain that if I made an offer I could buy the studio for another £1000 cheaper. I think I will heed your advice and steer clear, the whole aim of purchasing a property is to enable me to fix it up and have a few holidays in, then in the next 18 months retire into the property , so I have to be certain that whatever I buy is legit and above board with correct paperwork and contracts. I really don't want my retirement spoiled by buying a property that doesn't have the correct paperwork. Apologies for the late reply but I have been working 6am to 6pm today. Many thanks for your informative reply it has helped me immensely.
Regards
Essex boy
  
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