Important Acts in the Building process

By off-plan purchasing of properties in Bulgaria the practice is the preliminary contract to be signed when the property is still in process of construction. It is recommendable the obligation of the buyers for paying of each instalment to be related to the obligation of the sellers for obtaining of the respective act in the building process. The most important acts in the building process except the building permission are:

•Act 14 (Act for acceptance of the building) –this act means that the roof level of the building is completed. Usually the developers with good reputation require the second instalment under the contract to be paid after Act 14 is issued.

•Act 15 (Act certified the suitability for acceptance of the construction) – with this Act the developer proves before the authorities that the building is constructed in accordance with the approved architectural projects. In relation to the above example it is the third instalment is due after Act 15 is obtained.

•Habitation certificate (ACT 16)- This is the final act of the building process. For obtaining with the habitation certificate is necessary a written request to be sent to the State Agency for the Building Control with the report from the consultant together with all the documents required during the building process.  Following that the head of the Agency for Building Control appointed the commission which accept the building works and form the official statement about the building works and issued Act 16 with proposal for issuing the Building Certificate if the building is in accordance to all projects, documents and the legislation. According to Bulgarian Construction Law the buildings or parts of the buildings which are not entered into exploitation are unusable. In general terms, Habitation certificate certifies that the building is suitable for usage and appropriate for living.

So, if the last instalment is paid and the Notary deed is signed before Act 16 is obtained by the seller, it is recommendable the seller to be obliged under the preliminary contract to provide the buyer with Act 16 within the specified period after signing the Notary deed although the buyer is already the new owner of the property. This is because the preliminary contract is a fully legally binding contract in the part of finishing of the building process even after the Notary deed is signed. The preliminary contract is enforceable under Art 19 of the Bulgarian Law of Contracts and Obligations and, should one of the parties decide not to go ahead with its obligations, the other party can apply before the court for enforcing the contract in accordance with the above article and to complete the purchase with court decision.

This article was created by Valova & Angelova law firm.