Amendments to the Common Building Ownership Act16 September 2022
You may find the upkeep and management of a holiday apartment in a commonly-owned building in Bulgaria challenging, while you live abroad.
If, for example, the building were flooded, affecting your apartment in the process, you will have a hard time coordinating with the other owners to have the problem fixed. The law governing the relations between owners in such buildings is inflexible and has not kept pace with modern day IT solutions, which makes it difficult to establish and maintain dialogue between neighbours, take legally binding decisions, solve problems, collect money for renovations, etc.
With the above in mind, the Bulgarian government has published a bill amending the Common Building Ownership Act for public discussion, which should serve to address these problems.
The bill aims to do this by proposing changes such as:
- owners’ meetings may also be held online. If an owner cannot attend a physical meeting, he may send a declaration by email, signed with a qualified e-signature, within 7 days of the meeting.
- quorum for owners’ meetings will no longer be 67% of the total area of all units in the building, but 51%, thus facilitating easier adoption of decisions. Also, in cases where quorum is lacking, the meeting can be adjourned for an hour and then be validly held regardless of the turnout. At present, the law states that it has to be adjourned to the next day in case of lack of quorum.
- owners’ books, where their identifying details are recorded, may be stored electronically. Currently, the lack of such readily available data prevents effective communication between owners.
- owners who live in the buildings for fewer than 30 days per year will no longer be exempt from paying their building fees, which should increase the income of commonly owned buildings, which is helpful for future common expenses.
- building managers will publish a report on the building’s income and expenses each month , to improve accountability.
- commonly owned buildings will have to open their own bank accounts, which would facilitate fee collection and increase transparency.
We at NBLO will keep monitoring the changes to the Common Building Ownership Act. In the meantime, if you need any legal assistance with your property in Bulgaria, please do not hesitate to contact us.