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What do the words Act 14, 15, 16 mean?
If you decide to buy property in Bulgaria and started working on market research, you will surely encounter with the ubiquitous combinations of the words - Act 14, Act 15 and Act 16. And as usual the real estate buyer is not familiar with this aspect of the process of buying property in Bulgaria, "REAL ESTATE IN BULGARIA" Ltd. offer you accurate and unambiguous information on the subject.
The act of sample 14, Act 15 and Act specimen sample 16 (in brief - Act 14, Act 15 and Act 16) are the main stages through which a building under construction passes, before settling into his new owners.
The issuing of the separate acts during the building process is described in the Bulgarian Law on Territory Planning. The requirements vary depending on the category of the site. Modern residential buildings usually fall into the so-called fourth and fifth site category and more rarely in the third when the building is bigger.
The aim of Acts 14, 15 and 16 is to control the separate stages of the construction process and check whether the different types of construction and fitting works are made in accordance with the current normative acts.
Act 14 is the first step of control of the construction works because this is the document for acceptance of the building's structure. Said in a simple way - Act 14 can be defined as the document issued when the building reaches shell stage*.
Act 14 is important because from the moment it is issued the right of ownership over the separate units in the building is already the object of disposition deals.
The next stage is Act 15. This is the document which ascertains that the building is fully finished. The document is signed both by the competent officials and by the owners of units in the building.
Act 15 is used for certifying the suitability for the building's accepting (part or stage of it). The act is a statement of ascertainment certifying that the building is executed in accordance with the approved projects and design. This means that the building is handed over from the developer to the assignor.
The document contains description of the contracts for the execution of the construction, the construction papers, the executive documentation and the acts and protocols drawn up during the building process. The document also include the construction file of the site containing acts, protocols, logs, declarations of correspondence of the used building product and other documents required under the respective normative act.
What is also done is an inventory of the site and the environment so as to check whether it has been restored to its state before the beginning of the construction works.
Act 15 is the basis for the drawing up of Act 16.
Usually Act 16 is the document most awaited by the new owners of the property. It is also known as Certificate of Habitation and is permission for using the building meaning it can be put into exploitation and can be lived in.
This Certificate of Habitation is the final act for the construction of a building and it certifies that the building is suitable to be lived in.
When issuing a permit to operate checked a number of circumstances associated with:
• the establishment of property rights regarding the legality of the constructed building
• whether the building was constructed on the approved projects or projects approved without
• correspondence between what is built and approved projects
No Act 16 can be issued if there is found any disparity between the actually executed building works and the approved projects.
In any case, the lack of Act 16 of a building is an indication that something is not right with the documents. This means one of the following:
• there is a disparity between the approved projects and the executed construction works or
• this could be a building that has been constructed outside any approved projects and without it being legalized it can't be lived in.
For that reason, Bulgarian real estate Ltd. advises those buying new finished properties to check whether they have been issued an Act 16 or check the reasons due to which the Act is not in place.
Information about whether a building has Act 16 can be received at the Regional Directorate of National and Building Control or from the seller of the site.
* shell stage means a building which has constructed walls and roof, with or without finishing works at various stage.