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Building permit requirements in Bulgaria

The public relations, connected with the structure of the territory, the investment designing and the construction in Bulgaria, as well as the restrictions of ownership for development purposes are regulated by the Spatial Development Act.

Building permit – why do I need it?

Under the law can be built only if you have permission. The building permit issued by the chief architect of the municipality is “basis” for the start of your construction. If you decide to build without being passed through the procedure, the construction site will fall into the category of so-called illegal constructions and you will be forced to remove it at your own expense.

A building permit is not required for:

  • repair of buildings, structures, facilities and installations;
  • the maintenance and repair of the technical infrastructure elements of art. 64 para. 1 of the Spatial Development Act, which do not change the route and technical characteristics;
  • greenhouses with an area up to 200 sq.m.
  •  retaining walls to a height of 1.2 meters above the adjacent ground in their base when they are not part of transport facilities;
  • tranche or embankment with a depth or height up to 1 m and an area of 30 sq.m. ;
  • The glazing of the balconies and loggias;
  • tombstones, tombstones and crosses with a height of 3 m;
  • field conservation of immovable cultural values;
  • conservation and restoration of facades and artistic elements and murals in the interior of architectural construction and artistic cultural values and conservation of archaeological immovable cultural values;
  • installation of building gas installations in residential buildings and villas;
  • the light transparent walls and solid walls with a height of the body part to 0.6 m within the boundaries of the plot;
  • garden and park elements with a height of 2.5 meters above the adjacent terrain.

To start the actual procedure of issuing a building permit, which includes several stages, is required in advance a proof of ownership (Notarial act) over the property or for the right of construction on a vendors lend;  Sketch of the plot – issued by the Office of Geodesy, Cartography and Cadastre; Design visa (visa design is a copy (sample) of the detailed development plan with the scope landed property and the neighboring plots, with designated existing buildings and structures in it. Investment project – you must contract with a licensed design firm, or an architect for the preparation of an investment project which includes the following areas – architecture, construction, electrical, plumbing, fire safety plan Safety and Health, geodesy and management plan for construction waste. You have to sign preliminary contracts with the water and electricity companies once the project is ready. Revision of the project from the Regional Inspectorate of Environment and Water.  An assessment for the conformity of the project can be performed by the person hired by you to carry out construction supervision – consultant assesses compliance of the project with basic works requirements and issue a comprehensive report.  Approval of the investment project – the final step before starting the procedure of issuing a building permit requires approval of the investment by the municipality. The request is made in writing and addressed to the chief architect of the municipality (region).

Approval of investment designs for issuing planning permission for construction is not required for:

  • Economic constructions with agricultural designation and the buildings of complementing construction, dependent on the ruling of the municipal council.  Including secondary buildings of the supplementing building up (summer kitchens and light constructions for heating materials and inventory, wells, fountains, septic pits and temporary toilets) can be constructed in regulated landed properties for low or for villa construction. The secondary constructions of the supplementing building up shall be with height up to 2.5 m over the adjacent terrain, and up to 3 m up to the most high point of the roof. When the buildings are situated on the internal boundary of the regulated landed property the most upper part of the roof at the blind wall side can be with height up to 3.6 m. Summer kitchens shall be disposed freely or connected without observing the requirements for distances to the buildings of the basic construction. Basins, wells, fountains, septic pits and temporary toilets shall be constructed in the regulated landed property according to the technical and the sanitary-hygiene requirements at a distance not less than 3 m from the boundary of the property.
  • mounting of installations, facilities and equipment, except the facilities with increased degree of danger, subject to technical supervision by Chief directorate “Inspectorate for state technical supervision”;
  • greenhouses with area up to 200 sq m;
  • pools with volume up to 100 cubic m in fenced landed properties;
  • support walls with height up to 2 m above the level of the terrain adjacent to their basis when they are not an element of transport sites;
  • fences, garden and park elements with height from 0.60 m. up to 2.20 m above the adjacent terrain;
  • undeveloped landed properties used for temporary open air parking places, markets for stall trading, open air sport facilities and children’s playgrounds and other similar sites on the basis of permission for construction, respectively permission for placing, under conditions and by order, determined with an ordinance of the municipal council.
  • mounting of installations for production of electric power, heat power and/or cooling power from renewable sources of general installed capacity up to 30 kW, including in the cases to the existing buildings in the urbanized territories, including on the roofs and on the facade constructions and in the own land property.

The procedure of issuing a building permit starts by making an application to the chief architect of the municipality (region) where you live. In the 14 – day period you will be notified if the application has been accepted, therefore the project authorized. All interested parties, or neighbors may appeal the decision of the chief architect in the 14 – day period from issuance to the head of the Regional Directorate for National Construction Control (RDNCC), as if challenging in this period is not received, the building permit becomes effective.

Important! The building permit shall lose its effect if, within three years not started construction or for five years from the start did not finish the rough construction of the building (to surrounding walls and roof of the building without or with varying degrees of finishing work). In this case, the construction can make the following certification of authorization.