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European property boom fuelled by canny Brits

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Foreign property markets are booming as more British purchasers look abroad, according to the Foreign Focus Index (FFI) launched this week by foreign exchange company Moneycorp.

It is estimated that at least 250,000 British people now own a property abroad, with the key motivation for making a foreign purchase the chance to make returns on an investment rather than the convenience of owning a holiday home.

More than a quarter of enquiries for new property purchases in the final quarter of 2006 were for a Spanish second home.

However, Bulgaria has emerged as one of the main countries for foreign property investment, with as many British nationals looking to buy there as in the US.

Around 10% of the people looking tom buy abroad are considering Bulgaria for the low-cost flights to the country, low cost of living and good winter skiing facilities coupled with a pleasant summer climate.

“Bulgaria is a great place for property investment and in my opinion will be one of the hottest European destinations for Brits over the next 10 years,” said Ulster property developer Peter Morrow.

“The housing market here in Northern Ireland is booming, with prices having risen around 45% in the past year alone, but I think Bulgaria will outperform even that record.”



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