The maintenance costs of housing in Bulgaria are not as high as in other European countries. Low prices for the real estate itself, along with affordable maintenance and maintenance costs, make Bulgaria very attractive for buying a house or apartment.
The cost of maintaining real estate in Bulgaria can be divided into the following items:
• Property tax. Real estate tax is paid annually at a rate of 0.15%. The amount of tax does not depend on the status of the owner and is the same for both individuals and legal entities.
• Community tax. In fact, this is a tax on the removal of household waste, the amount is determined by the municipality
• Payment for utilities - water, electricity, heating (if available).
• Internet, television, telephone. Most often, the owner independently determines the provider and independently controls the costs.
• The support tax under the contract will be considered in more detail below.
WHAT IS A SUPPORT TAX AND WHY PAY IT?
In Bulgaria, management companies are responsible for the maintenance of residential complexes and many town houses. They are often determined by the developers. Recently, however, homeowners are choosing a manager on their own.
The responsibilities of the management company include: responsibility for the condition, support, repair of the common parts and infrastructure of the complex or house, and may also include security / video surveillance, pool maintenance, cleaning and landscaping of the territory, maintenance of additional premises (saunas , gyms, tennis courts, etc.)
To regulate the relationship between the owners and the management company, a support agreement is signed. It regulates the rights and obligations of the parties. On the basis of the contract, the owner can demand the fulfillment of the Criminal Code of the obligations, and the company has the right to demand payment from the owner of the real estate for its services. There are two main approaches to calculating the support rate:
• The amount of payment is determined in euros or levs per 1 square meter per year. As a result, the amount to be paid depends on the total area of the premises, purchased housing. For example, a management company or a meeting of owners has decided that the maintenance fee is 5 EUR / m2. The owner of a studio with a total area of 40 m2 must pay 200 euros per year. The owner of a 60 m2 two-room apartment will pay 300 euros per year.
• A single amount is determined that must be paid by homeowners, regardless of the type of apartment and its area.
The negative point that homeowners sometimes face is associated with the fact that the management company does not always fulfill its duties in good faith. As a result, payment for support is made in full, and services are not provided or are provided, but not in the proper amount.
And one moment. Remember the arbitrariness of management companies
Most of them buy apartments in Bulgaria, located in resort residential complexes. They conclude an agreement with the management company, according to which the owners must leave the keys to their apartments - supposedly in case of emergencies (fire, etc.). Taking advantage of the fact that there are keys, some unscrupulous management companies rent out apartments without the knowledge of the owners during their absence. To avoid this, it is necessary to install remote-controlled video cameras and alarms in the apartment. If any violations are recorded, you should write a statement to the police, after which the management company will be fined.
Another problem is related to the fact that management companies unreasonably increase service fees without notifying tenants. According to the law, to change the tariffs, the consent of the owners is enough, who at the moment can personally participate in the general meeting. In winter, the management company makes a decision with the participation of only a few tenants. Most apartment owners return in the summer and find out that they have to pay several times more than they bargained for.
If the tenants are not satisfied with the service, the management company can always be changed. This requires the consent of the majority of the owners.
Thus, when choosing a property, it is important to take into account the size of the support fee and evaluate the services included in it.
The presence of a tax in the complexes is taken for granted. Those who do not want to pay it buy real estate in ordinary residential buildings without a pool and other services. However, in city houses there is also a support tax in most cases. It is small, 5-25 BGN / month. Such support usually includes cleaning and replacement of light bulbs in the entrance, and maintenance of the elevator.
The question very often arises, is it possible not to pay for the services to support the complex? Especially if the housing was purchased for the summer vacation and you spend very little time in it during the year, and you still have to pay for support. There is no clear answer to this question in the legislation. But more and more management companies require the obligation to pay the fee to be included in a separate clause in the notarial deed, in which case, if this is indicated in the act, the answer is unambiguous and you can be brought to court for violation of obligations, with corresponding consequences.
In the absence of a service agreement, some owners do not really pay the tax, but in this case they are limited to access to common areas and services (for example, a swimming pool, elevator, parking).
Best regards, TRentMe team
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