Author Leaonne Hall is an expert on the overseas property market and has written extensively for a number of newsstand titles. She previously produced three editions of the Red Guide to Buying Property in Eastern Europe, and has been writing in detail on the individual markets since 2003.
A huge number of people are now looking to buy second homes. With a volatile stock market and worries over pension schemes, property is seen as an appealing way in which to invest. What’s more, many of us aren’t satisfied with simply owning a home abroad – we want to live there permanently, seeking a more relaxed life, a better climate for retiring, or somewhere safe to raise a family. With house prices in the UK rocketing, property overseas is becoming increasingly attractive, especially for first-time buyers, and Eastern Europe is currently one of the world’s hotspots.
So why is that? Well, what I love about Eastern Europe is the infinite variety. Whether you want sea, sun and sand, clean mountain air and skiing opportunities, a beautiful, affordable countryside home or a chic city centre pad, you’ll find it in Eastern Europe – and generally at a fraction of the price of Western Europe.
The variety of places, peoples and cultures in Eastern Europe, along with the virtually inexhaustible amount of property, really does mean there’s something for everyone. While the concept of living or buying in an area which, up until recently, was under the shadow of communist rule may put some buyers off, it’s worth noting that these countries have developed incredibly quickly, with many cities becoming European economic leaders and international business hubs. Turn the corner, though, and you’ll still find people living off the land, as their ancestors did before them, giving an irresistible mix of the modern and the traditional.
If you’re seeking to buy somewhere with a little more diversity and adventure, Eastern Europe really is the ideal option for you.