Foreigners Buy EUR 817 M of Bulgarian Real Estate in H1

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Foreigners Buy EUR 817 M of Bulgarian Real Estate in H1

Foreign individuals and companies with foreign shareholders bought real estate worth EUR 817 M in the first six months of the year, Bulgarian National Bank (BNB) data showed.

The figure is a 79% increase over the same period of last year, when foreign buyers paid EUR 457 M for real estate in the country.

Real estate buys accounted for nearly 40% of all foreign direct investment in January-June, helping offset flagging inflows, according to the BNB figures.

Bulgaria has attracted foreigners for years with its warm climate, seaside and winter resorts and relatively low-priced properties, but interest grew into a boom last year.

Foreigners spent a total EUR 1,13 B on Bulgarian real estate in 2006 and will almost certainly spend even more this year, although overconstruction is turning some of them off.

Brits remain the driving force of the boom and paid, as a whole, more than anyone else to buy houses in Bulgaria, focusing on seaside properties and accounting for 15,9% of the total money spent.

Austria and Luxembourg follow in the rankings, with 13,2% and 11,8%, respectively, while Spaniards spent 7,5% of the total sum.

Bulgaria joined the EU in January, but that had no effect on the market, as foreigners could buy real estate long before the accession, with the exception of the land itself.

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