Russians buy property in Bulgaria, this is not exactly breaking news but what is surprising is how many Russians buy property in Bulgaria.
300,000 Russian citizens already own a Bulgarian property according to the Bulgarian Minister of Economy, Energy and Tourism Assen Vassilev in a recent address to the INTURMARKET -2013 tourism exhibition in Moscow.
Here are some other interesting numbers, over 20% of Russians have confirmed that they want to Buy a property in Bulgaria and over 600,000 Russians visited Bulgaria in 2012 which was a 30% increase on 2011 figures.
These figures certainly support the notion that Russians buy property in Bulgaria, but what they do not tell us is how much they are willing to spend which is what we are really interested in.
Property sales in Bulgaria to date in 2013 have been strong but prices have not.
It is not that prices have been slashed again because of either the Bulgarian economy or the Russian economy, the truth is that both economies are in reasonable shape.
The problem lies with the Irish and British economies neither of which are doing particularly well at present.
As a result a of our own sluggish economies many Irish and UK investors who bought property in Bulgaria during better days are now trying to sell them.
Our clients sell their properties for various reasons but regardless of what their reasons may be, the result is still the same. A huge supply of properties for sale at the same time.
While it is fair to say that there are enough Russians actively buying properties in Bulgaria to deal with this supply, what we need to be aware of is that because of the large number of properties currently for sale by private owners prices are constantly dropping because owners are being pitted against each other.
An example of this is as follows:
A Russian Buyer contacts a number of estate agents to try and find the perfect holiday home in Bulgaria. Each agent will give him a number of properties to choose from. Eventually the Buyer decides which property they like. All seems pretty straight forward so far.
The Buyer decides to buy a 1 bedroom apartment in development X for €30,000 and informs the other agents that they have made a decision.
Each of the agents they have contacted focused on the selling their clients property and now they are watching a Buyer choose a different property.
Now it can get messy, the agents will now try and convince the Buyer to change their mind and offer them better value for money. This is when you the owner gets the call and you are told that there is a serious Buyer looking to buy a 1 bedroom apartment for €30,000 but that they have a choice between your property and a similar property. The only difference is price. You now must decide if you are willing to reduce your price to secure the sale.
The reduction may not be huge, it may only be 1500 Euro which is a fairly reasonable reduction from your asking price of €30,000. In fact it is only 5%. Your agent will now call the Buyer and confirm that he can offer them a similar property to what they liked but he can get it for them cheaper. He will collect the deposit and secure the sale before any other agent can do the same.
Your agent has now secured your sale and you should be happy with them because they did their job.
The flip side of this story is that the very next day when your agent is valuing a new clients property and they are using the same comparable method they used to value your property when you first contacted them they will now tell the new client that the most recent sale of a similar property to theirs was for €28,500. Strictly speaking the market price for 1 bedroom apartments in Development X has now fallen by 5%.
The point of this example is to illustrate that when Russians buy property in Bulgaria they have such a large choice of properties in excellent locations that in the end, price is your strongest asset.
We are not saying that you should drop your price to make a sale but be under no illusions that if you don’t, the likelihood is that your neighbour could.
If you would to discuss y0ur Bulgarian property or you need advice on any aspect of Bulgarian property please contact us and we will be very happy to help you in any way we can.