Investing in off plan developments in Bulgaria

Investing in off plan developments in Bulgaria

Investing in off plan developments in Bulgaria

The idea of investing in off plan developments around the world has caught the attention of many would-be real estate investors. While the majority of these investors are experienced individuals who will research their targets thoroughly, ensure they are fully aware of their obligations and cut no corners to save just a few euros, there are others who may be tempted by the advice of unscrupulous real estate agents and developers. There are ways and means of investing in off plan developments in Bulgaria in a manner which protects your investment, gives you the best chance of a decent return and above all ensures that everything goes smoothly.

An off plan develop in Bulgaria is a property which does not yet have a “use permit” which is issued when the development has been completed and regulatory approval has been granted. So, what are the stages of off plan development in Bulgaria and what should you be aware of?

Planning permission

This is the first stage of development with regards to an off plan investment and basically entitles the developer to commission an architectural design with relevant construction plans. These must abide by the statutory regulations and be produced in accordance with local authority guidelines.

Quote from : “I have a nice property in bankya near Sofia with a building permit with about 1000m²which I would like to sell for about 120.000€. I would prefer not to have to pay for an agency. Does anyone have a good idea where I should advertise for it? Is ebay a good idea? I am not in a hurry selling within a year is totally fine for me.”

Construction permit

As you move towards the construction permit the actual building of the development draws nearer as this allows construction plans to be put in place. This will only happen once the relevant architectural designs and construction plans have been approved by the local authorities.


The construction stage is something that many speculative and fraudulent off plan developments never reach and is perhaps the reason why countries such as Bulgaria have brought in strict regulations. Once the construction stage begins this should reflect that funding is available, the project is viable and hopefully completion will not be too far away.

Certificate of completion

There are two stages to the completion process with a certificate of completion given together with an approval of rough construction which means that in theory the development abides by local guidelines and regulations and is legal. We will then move onto the next stage which will effectively see the development signed-off.

Compliance certificate

As with any new development there will be a need for detailed examination by statutory bodies and assuming that all has gone well and to plan the development will be signed off if completed to the local statutory rules. Many investors will now breathe a sigh of relief on reaching this particular stage!

Use permit

As you might expect, this is the final piece of the jigsaw and effectively means that the property is ready to be inhabited and full ownership can now be transferred over. While some speculators have had their fingers burnt in Bulgaria, and other similar emerging real estate markets, these guidelines, assuming that all parties abide by them, should ensure a smoother and ultimately fruitful investment.


If you are looking to acquire off plan developments in countries such as Bulgaria you will still need the assistance of legal and property experts who are able to protect your investment and give you the best advice. There are many different parties to choose from and if possible a “word-of-mouth” recommendation should be sought although there are still other ways and means of investigating the quality of potential partners.

If there is one thing which you should always bear in mind it is the fact that cutting corners, to save just a few euros here and there, can have catastrophic consequences in the long run. Stick by the guidelines, follow the process stage by stage and you’ll give yourself the best chance of making a return on your investment.

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