Bulgarian property building works

Property in Bulgaria in need of minor building works

You should be able to find many individuals in Bulgaria willing to do minor building works for you. Indeed, in each Bulgarian village there is always someone or a small team of builders who are handy at doing basic building works such as plumbing or plastering (although you should always aim to use a qualified electrician and plumber). Many Bulgarians are practised in DIY, since there was neither spare money nor many builders to hire professionally during the Communist era. Many of the Bulgarian houses in the villages in Bulgaria were actually built by the residents themselves.

Old bulgarian house in need of renovation

The best way to find these semi-skilled workers is through recommendations, and the best way to make a judgement of their building work yourself is to ask to see other houses and properties renovations in Bulgaria that they have done and ask the price that the Bulgarian property owner paid. These people generally do not work with contracts, so do not expect any invoices from them.

Bulgarian property in need of significant building renovation works

These will probably involve structural changes, possibly including extension of the property, and may require approval by the relevant authorities. Below is a list of important issues to consider before embarking on these kinds of work.

Bulgarian property building and renovation project management companies

If you are in Bulgaria for the duration of the Bulgarian property renovation work you might choose to source the building contractors yourself, possibly through recommendations. However unless you are very stout-hearted you are probably better off engaging the services of a Bulgarian building and renovation project management company. A good company will have access to all the necessary contractors and will save you the sweat of co-ordinating tasks and workers yourself. They would be able to assist with finding architects, assist with the planning approval process, identify suitable contractors and negotiate prices on your behalf, supervise all the works and make payments in your absence. A company will charge anything from 10-15 per cent of the cost of the works, but it may more than repay its fee by finding good contractors at the right price, particularly since it is tempting for contractors to overcharge when approached by a ‘wealthy’ western building novice. Another reason why you might be better off using a project management company is because architects in Bulgaria, unlike UK architects, do not generally perform rigorous on-site supervision of projects, so it will also fall to the management company to make the necessary building checks. Beware of project management companies that quote unusually low fees, since they may be getting a kickback from contractors and you will end up paying more for the work.

old rural house in Bulgaria in need of major renovations

Finding local builders in Bulgaria

“When I came to Bulgaria three years ago, ‘says Bernie,’ I was the first English person to live in the village of Slayeykovo. Now 20 of the 80 houses are owned by English people. The Bulgarian house I bought needed repairs and I found it difficult to get the materials I needed and find local labour. Local people did not advertise their services, so I had to ask someone who knows someone who knows someone. But the situation has changed dramatically in the last few years. Now people come knocking on your door to ask if you need any jobs done.”

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