More and more people in the West prefer to live on rent. Reasons behind this are the high payments on mortgage loans as well as the increased mobility of people and the more-often relocation in another town or even country.
Looking to properties in Bulgaria, which are among the fastest gainers in Europe. In smaller towns the dynamic is weak, unlike in Sofia, Plovdiv or Varna. This difference is the reason forecasts and comparisons in favour of renting compared to buying are more on the careful side. Despite this, statistics show gradual increase in the rents of residential properties. In 2018 almost 17% of Bulgarians are paying for accommodation. In comparison: data from 2010 shows that the percentage was around 13%.
Before you decide whether you want to rent a home, think about what is important to you: the size of the place, in which part of the city it is located, access to transportation, floor, exposure, parking, etc. The condition in which the place is being offered is crucial: is it furnished or will this be your responsibility. The answers of these questions will give you important clues, which will help you plan a decent budget.
Proper budgeting includes more than the funds to pay your rent. You should keep in mind utility bills as well and often enough unexpected costs occur. Here the rule that the costs of renting a place shouldn’t exceed 30% of your monthly income, comes to aid. In order to avoid situations in which you reach for your savings, you should estimate of your expenditures for the month. Starting with the essentials such as: electricity, water, food, followed by others like: clothing, phone, television and internet bills, transportation costs and others.
When looking at free residential properties on the internet, it is important to communicate only with reliable real estate brokers who you could trust. Fake advertisements, especially in Sofia, are common practice, which can cause you a lot of time and energy.
Getting closer to the desired home
After defining the main requirements for the property, as well as a budget, few important details should be clarified with your future landlords. Namely: a rental agreement and a protocol when moving in. In order for the relations between the tenants and the landlord to be governed, the two documents should be accompanied with photos. Besides the monthly payment and the period for which the property is being lent, which is usually one year or unlimited, the condition of the property as well as all furniture and equipment at the time of moving in, should be described in them. If you think you will have to move before the end date of the contract, try to negotiate a termination clause with one month notice period. You should be prepared to pay a deposit in the amount of one (but sometimes 2-3) rents, which has been established as a practice. Clearly described conditions at the date of renting give you the security that your landlord won’t hold you accountable for things that have been passed on to you in poor condition.
When renting real estate it is important to understand the financial and legal obligations you have to your landlord. Otherwise, you risk not only to lose your deposit but you may also be asked to leave the property early.