Expat Accommodation costs in Bucharest – by area

The capital city Bucharest is rich in its history with beautiful Art-Deco, Art-Nouveau, Baroque, Byzantine and Bauhaus structures lining the cobble streets mixed in with a miriad of communist era blocks. If you want to live in Bucharest then this article will point you in the right direction.

Accommodation in Bucharest comes in a variety of forms and will suit all types of Expat. Certain neighborhoods appeal more than others for Expats and are characterised by price, population density, proximity to nature, shopping, transport or nightlife. The old city in the centre is the most famous place for party nights. The more upmarket northern area is perhaps better suited to the more outdoorsy type with many parks nearby. The Northern Suburbs have several new housing constructions and being further out from the city, is ideal for those who enjoy quieter neighborhoods. The central area is perhaps the most popular by volume of requests and offers good value for money, while the central east is more working class but still desirable. The central west is far less preferred. Continue reading

Selecting a Property Management company – a landlord’s guide

A competent property management company, such as White Mountain, should become one of your greatest assets, second only to the properties that they manage on your behalf. That said, your property manager will make critical decisions on your behalf. Therefore it is extremely important that you do your homework during the selecting process.

This guide is designed to educate property owners with the knowledge and tools necessary to confidently evaluate all of the property management companies they interview, and select a property manager that can competently meet their needs.

What to Look for in a Property Management Company

  1. Property Management Fees
  2. Handling Tenant and Owner Funds
  3. Setting and Collecting Rent
  4. Property Maintenance and Repairs
  5. Property Inspections
  6. Tenant Marketing and Retention
  7. Tenant Screening
  8. Examining the Company – Background, Qualifications, Portfolio
  9. Examining the Company – Size, Staff, Customer Service
  10. Conclusion

Continue reading

Now Hiring: Brokers required

White Mountain Property Real Estate & Investment Services has been the premier English speaking real estate brokerage in Brasov Since 2007, & since 2013 in Bucharest.  We have a reputation for honest service quality & dependability that few other agencies enjoy, nationally.

White Mountain Property
Property Management Romania

The foundation of our team is the depth of our local market knowledge & our integrity to our clients. Our history of maintaining client relationships in local markets enables us to be the best information source and transaction service provider in both Bucharest & Brasov.  We wish to expand our commercial & residential real estate brokerage & seek aggressive, ambitious and capable individuals to expand our Sales & Rental teams for both of our modern flagship offices: Bucherest (Izvor/ Piata Unirii) & Brasov (Piata Sfatului).

Candidates must be self-motivated, driven, tenacious and entrepreneurial by nature. Responsibilities include: negotiations, prospecting, market research, deal making and transaction management. High incomes are common in an agent’s second to third year, competitive with other domains.  At White Mountain Property, we can provide a training program, mentorship for new agents and continuous development coaching to maintain our position of one of the most trusted names in this domain, nationally, and we will tailor them to your own level of real estate experience. Our proven business plan has developed a diverse group of talented, motivated and well compensated professionals. We provide an entrepreneurial environment balanced with strong corporate support and training. Our clients range from foreign investors & Expats, Repats to Embassies to Schools to local residents.

As with all real estate broker positions, this is a commission-only position but comes with good start-up support & quick-start client leads, as required.

Experienced commercial & residential real estate agents should call directly for a confidential discussion.

 Job Requirements

  • University Degree preferred
  • English speaking
  • Self-motivated
  • Prior Sales Experience a Plus
  • Entrepreneurial Nature
  • Strong Communication Skills
  • Self employed status is an advantage
  • Driving licence preferred

Job Snapshot

Location: Bucharest or Brasov (vacancies in both offices)

Pay: Commission (with some back up support salary)

Employment Type: Full-Time

Job Type: Finance, Sales, Rentals, Real Estate

Education: Degree

Industry: Real Estate, Accounting, Finance, Sales, Marketing

To perform the job successfully, the Broker should demonstrate the following:

  • Problem solving and interpersonal skills.
  • Good oral/ written communications skills
  • Clearly communicate any new or revised conditions in writing.
  • Demonstrates ability to handle multiple priority assignments within deadlines.
  • Gathers and analyses information skillfully with accurate judgment.
  • Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner.
  • Looks for ways to improve and promote quality.
  • Must be able to work with the team to accomplish goals and objectives
  • Works with integrity and ethically upholding the organizational values.
  • Be professional, motivated and take initiatives.
  • Provide outstanding customer service.

For further information or to request an interview, please email damian.galvin@whitemountain.ro or call 0727 606074.

See our services at www.whitemountain.ro

See what we do for yourself….

Conference on future development

Gupul de presă BURSA va organiza a II-a ediţie a Conferinţei “Strategia de dezvoltare a României” cu tema Capitalul autohton – sursă de creştere economică în data de 31 martie 2016, începând cu orele 09.30, la SkyTower Building, Etaj 34 (Calea Floreasca 246C – intrare din Bd. Barbu Văcărescu).

În cadrul evenimentului sunt propuse, spre dezbatere, următoarele subiecte:

  • Principalele obiective ale strategiei de dezvoltare a României;
  • Domeniile cheie pentru dezvoltarea economiei; Oportunităţi de investiţie în România;
  • Contribuţia firmelor româneşti la creşterea economică a României, comparativ cu firmele străine;
  • Măsuri guvernamentale pentru încurajarea capitalului autohton;
  • Sistemul fiscal pentru companiile româneşti versus companii străine; Preţurile de transfer şi implicaţiile lor în economie;
  • Rolul băncilor în susţinerea economiei;
  • Bursa de Valori – alternativă de finanţare pentru companiile româneşti;
  • Viitorul Uniunii Europene şi al Spaţiului Schengen în impas? Cum ar trebui să procedeze România?
  • Oportunitatea aderării României la Zona Euro;
  • Importanţa cunoştinţelor şi capitalului românilor plecaţi în străinătate;
  • Legătura între capitalul autohton şi libertatea economică.

Au fost invitaţi să susţină prezentări:

  • Dacian Cioloş, Prim-ministrul României;
  • Costin Grigore Borc, Viceprim-ministru, Ministrul Economiei, Comerţului şi Relaţiilor cu Mediul de Afaceri;
  • Anca Dana Dragu, Ministrul Finanţelor Publice;
  • Cosmin Ştefan Marinescu, Consilier Prezidenţial, Departamentul Politici Economice şi Sociale, Preşedinţia României;
  • Daniel Dăianu, Membru în Consiliul de Administraţie al Băncii Naţionale a României (confirmat);
  • Sergiu Oprescu, Preşedinte al Consiliului Director, Asociaţia Română a Băncilor;
  • Mircea Ursache, Vicepreşedinte, Autoritatea de Supraveghere Financiară (confirmat);
  • Cristian Pârvan, Patronatul Societăţilor Private din România (confirmat);
  • Anca Vlad, Preşedinte, Fildas–Catena Grup (confirmat);
  • Florin Jianu, Preşedinte, Patronatul Tinerilor Întreprinzători din România (confirmat);
  • Academician Ionel Valentin Vlad, Preşedinte, Academia Română.

* de confirmat

La conferinţă vor fi prezenţi aproximativ 200 de participanţi: companii mari şi IMM-uri din toate domeniile de activitate (agricultură, infrastructură, energie, IT&C, construcţii, resurse umane, auto, turism, mediu, transport, telecomunicaţii, dezvoltarea capacităţii administrative); bănci; fonduri de garantare/contragarantare; fonduri de pensii; societăţi de avocatură; societăţi de asigurare; societăţi de leasing; societăţi de brokeraj; fonduri de investiţii; autorităţi publice centrale şi locale; mass media (tv, radio, presă).

Taxa de participare este de 50 de euro + TVA.

Pentru mai multe detalii vă rugăm să consultaţi site-ul dedicat evenimentului: http://www.bursa.ro/dezvoltarea-romaniei-2016/


Loredana Dorobanţu

Coordonator Marketing & PR


Cycling in Bucharest? get a mask!

Interesting discussion on mask types for cyclists, published by British newspaper, the Guardian.

With thousands dying a year from poor air quality, is a mask as good a safety precaution as a helmet?

A cyclist wears a mask amid heavy smog in London.
Many British urban bike commuters opt to wear a helmet. Some also go for a hi-vis jacket. But considerably fewer use an anti-pollution mask, despite evidence that smog might be the biggest single danger you face on two wheels.

According to a study carried out by Kings College London (KCL), around 9,500 people die in London alone every year due to long-term exposure to air pollution, with most deaths due to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and fine particulates known as PM2.5s.

London’s levels of NO2 are high and exceed the EU’s pollution limits. It’s not just the capital’s cyclists who are being exposed to dangerously high levels of pollutants; Leeds and Birmingham have also been identified as high-risk cities.

While getting a lungful of bus exhaust is never fun, the evidence is mixed over whether cyclists are particularly at risk from pollution. Earlier work by KCL air quality experts suggested urban cyclists could be exposed to lower levels of particulates than some, possibly their journeys tend to be shorter, possibly because being on the move in the open air rather than inside a vehicle helps dissipate smog.

Nonetheless, a mask that helps to filter out dangerous pollutants from the air shouldn’t be sniffed at, especially given some studies which show masks can filter out nasties.

Dr Gary Fuller from KCL says a mask should be of benefit as long as it uses “sub-micron filters to filter out the small particles”. He adds: “A snug fit on the face is also critical”. The more expensive masks on the market, like those by Respro and Totobobo, do have these filters.

Henry Cole, founder of anti-pollution mask company Respro, argues that masks make sense: “The average bike commuter is breathing huge quantities of air per year. The danger comes from the cumulative effect of all these particles and over-exposure to these particles can lead to respiratory problems.”

If they’re so good at filtering at pollution then why isn’t everybody wearing one? A sales assistant I spoke to in cycling shop Evans told me that it slows him down and he struggles to breathe through the mask. “If you’re a commuter racing through the streets you’ll find them frustrating.”

Fuller notes that there is an alternative: taking an alternative route along back roads, where pollution levels tend to be far lower. But this isn’t always possible, so I’ve put some masks to the test on a near-five mile route through inner London.

Respro City mask: £25.99

Respro City mask
The Respro City mask. Photograph: Respro

This is by far the most commonly-seen cyclists’ mask in the UK. But it wasn’t entirely for me.

Struggling to breathe is a bit of a problem on a bike. After 100m I stop and turn it upside down to see if it’s any better. It doesn’t seem to make a difference. Not only am I getting weird looks from pedestrians who think I’m here to take over Gotham, I got an actual eye-roll from a fellow cyclist. Wearing my helmet, visibility is at the level of a paper bag with eyeholes cut out, which isn’t ideal.

However, when I inspect the filter there is a thin film of grey dirt which would have been sucked into my lungs. Better out than in. The valves, which wick away pollutants, also reassure me that the discomfort is worth it. I can’t smell any fumes, but then, I can’t smell much because there’s a lot of pressure on the bridge of my nose from the tight straps.

Totobobo: £20

Totobobo mask
The Totobobo mask in use. Photograph: Totobobo

Marketed as a general anti-pollution barrier rather than specifically for cycling, this resembles a surgical mask, as if I was performing an operation when asked to run an urgent errand.

That aside, it’s lighter than the Respro and feels less restrictive. However, there are no valves which means my face gets really sweaty which isn’t the look I’m after on my commute.

The filters show up an astonishing amount of dirt after just a few cycles, which really hits home how dirty the air we breathe in is. It’s easy to attach and I can move my face when wearing it – a bonus.

BioLogic Pollution Mask: £18

BioLogic mask
The BioLogic mask. Photograph: BioLogic

BioLogic’s website describes the mask as “heavy duty pollution protection” for the “serious urban commuter”. Made from industrial-grade rubber and plastic, the mask has two replaceable carbon filters and dual “inhale ports” which claim to let you breathe easy even when you’re sprinting.

However, this thing is weighty, not to mention it looks like you’re fleeing from some kind of nuclear attack. If you value something more hardwearing than discreet then this is the mask for you. Online reviews suggest prolonged use can reduce asthma symptoms and when wearing it, there’s barely a scent of any traffic fumes.

Ultimately, it’s so unwieldy and strange-looking that you have to be either very confident or very asthmatic to use this.

Surgical facemask: £4.52 for 100

A woman in a mask during heavy smog in Harbin, northern China.
A woman in a mask during heavy smog in Harbin, northern China. Photograph: AP

These are the sorts of mask you see in news reports about China’s smog. There’s just one problem: lacking any sort of filter they’re simply not going to do anything. That’s definitely how it felt – as well as flapping in the wind, it didn’t fasten onto my face properly. Yes, they’re 45p per mask, but you’re better off stumping up more money for something that might actually work.

Continue reading

Dirty Bucharest? – Air Quality Discussion

Taken from Romania-Insider, which in turn was taken from an EcoPolis report.  This will be a new area of interest for White Mountain as we investigate new ways to identify healthy ways to live.

Bucharest has the second highest number of days when the air pollution exceeds the admitted level of dust, with almost three months a year when the air has a higher concentration of dust than the norm. Bulgarian capital Sofia ranks first, with 162 days, according to a recent report about quality of living in Bucharest by the Center for Sustainable Policies Ecopolis. Best ranking are Stockholm and Copenhagen, with only two dusty days a year. Continue reading

Simple steps to making your own sauna

Saunas are small interior spaces that are heated and fed with water to create a hot, steamy environment where people can relax and ease muscle pain. Building personal saunas is relatively simple if a good location is selected and the adequate materials are purchased. Although styles and sizes of saunas vary, the basic principles of sauna construction are the same, and these steps will give you a general outline of how to build a home sauna. Continue reading

How Bucharest looked in 1990 after Communism

În 1990, japonezul Norihiro Haruta venea la București să vadă cum arată capitala unei țări proaspăt ieșită din lagărul socialist. Japonezul nu a prins în clișeele sale evenimentul major al anului 1990: Mineriada din 13-15 iunie. Atunci, forțele de ordine, susținute de mineri (la chemarea președintelui Consiliului Frontului Salvării Naționale, CFSN, Ion Iliescu, fost membru al Partidului Comunist Român, PCR), au intervenit în forță împotriva protestatarilor din Piața Universității și a populației civile. Turistul nu a imortalizat nici atmosfera din jurul “duminicii orbului”, adică ziua de 20 mai 1990, mai devreme în an, când au avut loc în România primele alegeri libere de după al Doilea Război Mondial. Televiziunea Română (televiziunea de stat) era controlată de putere – CFSN – și a ajutat masiv cu propagandă. Astfel, puterea instalată după 22 decembrie 1989 a fost validată oficial când FSN a câștigat alegerile. Continue reading

Embassies, bicycles, police, church & champagne – a day in the life of a broker

property searchI don’t often write about the daily life of a WM broker, usually because life is too hectic to capture the events, but last Sunday was such an interesting day, it is worth sharing.

We have been invited to try to find new premises for an Embassy in Bucharest looking to relocated. Lets just say their nation’s language is English & leave the rest to the imagination.  Continue reading


Located in the heart of Romania, a city with medieval architecture makes you feel like you’re inside a story.photo took from. Brasov, Romania.

In the nearby wonderful green forests of Carpathian Mountain range, a small settlement was founded by peoples from the Neolithic age (circa 9500-9300 BC). Situated in a highly strategic point, the king of Hungary invited Germans to colonise in order to develop mines, villages, towns and agriculture in the area around of Brasov. Continue reading

ANAF cleans up on tax evasion

Nimeni nu scapa ! ANAF i-a luat la ochi pe romanii din strainatate. Vrea sa le puna POPRIRE pe conturi

According to the “Voice of Transylvania” ANAF is one step from tidying up the bank accounts of Romanian citizens working legally in the country or abroad. The exchange of confidential data between ANAF and banks around the world could be dictated by the Fiscal Procedure Code, whereby the deputy of Cluj’s Aurelia Cristea proposal will be adopted.

Deputy Aurelia Cristea, a member of the Committee on Budget, Finance and Banking, said that the amendments proposed by the project according to Articles 61-62 of the Code of Fiscal Procedure, would lead to a collaboration with over 52 banks worldwide, to prevent tax evasion and also to facilitate recovery under the umbrella of the law, flows of people who have evaded payment of taxes stipulated by the existing legal framework in Romania.

ANAF policies are gradually reaching into every aspect of Romanian life in an attempt to clean up the losses of taxes. In the future it is predictable that 100% of all financial transactions, be they buying a hot dog from a street seller or giving a cash wedding gift, will pass through the ANAF filter in some way.

Dutchie Management, keys and Locksmiths

I would not normally put characters to screen in this way, but it seems that Alexandra Maria Varga & her crowd from DMS, or Dutchie Management have a growing group of ex clients who all claim to have totally deserted and their money, documents and keys effectively stolen.

In the past 2 years, around 14 clients of theirs have come to us, in total despair, with claims of missing rent (for up to one year).

Today alone, a group of 3 owners of Greenfield Residence apartments came to us stating they cannot reach Alexandra Varga since September, they have no keys, no rental contact details and of course you guessed it, no money. Last anyone heard was that Alexandra had fled to Spain.  If you know anything about her whereabouts, please get in touch with Ilfov Police department as we understand there is a growing list of criminal complaints mounting up against her and her ex team.  It is not bad enough that many of her clients were apparently cheated by her life partner, an MRI manager, with a criminal conviction who did prison time for financial irregularities with his clients.  See MRI-SG support group website for more details on that.

The biggest problem, ignoring untold thousands in lost rent each month, is the fact that owners have no keys and having changed many ex DMS managed apartments, I can say that there is no cheap solution. If the door has been locked with a key, you need a new door (circa 600e). If it has just been slam closed, you can break in using a locksmith, open the door & change the lock (circa 400e!).

If you are a victim of Dutchie Management Greenfield and want to be put in touch with other owners, please get in touch.



ex-DMS managed apartment (1) ex-DMS managed apartment (2) ex-DMS managed apartment (3) ex-DMS managed apartment (4) ex-DMS managed apartment (5) ex-DMS managed apartment (7) ex-DMS managed apartment (8) ex-DMS managed apartment (9) ex-DMS managed apartment (10) ex-DMS managed apartment (11) ex-DMS managed apartment (12) ex-DMS managed apartment (13) ex-DMS managed apartment (14)

The Romanians are coming….thank god!

Like many educated people with experience of Romania, I cringed when I saw the carefully selected rubbish that the UK’s Channel4 produced about the Romanians in the UK.

But what do I know? Well….

In the past month alone I have in equal measure spent time in my native London & Surrey, been in cancer hospitals, all sorts of social interactions in the UK, been in Bucharest’s mayhem working till 10pm daily, in the Carpathian mountains, in Brasov’s quite bars and clubs and even in Sicily for Valentine’s break And spent an evening with a senior member of the Irish embassy.  Quite a life style for just 4 weeks.  But this is normal for me. I keep myself busy. I do things, see things.

I have lived among Romanians for 7 years straight, I employ 11 of them and interact with a great many more.  Sure, they have their vices.  Passion for earning money is one. But so does every nation have its unique characteristics That others criticize.

But I do know this. The Romanians I know are a God fearing, respectable, gentle people who care about family, personal presentation, manners and dignity, gifted with a quick mind and slow temper. They can learn a lot from the UK, such as being charitable, or keeping their word in a deal. But the UK can learn much more from the Romanians as many of the qualities I mention above are a lost art in the UK. Think I am wrong? Could your mother walk home at 11pm in the UK? In Romania , generally speaking, there is no hour at which this would be unsafe in any town centre or city centre in Romania, excluding unlit country roads etc for risk of a bad driver or wild bear!  The concept of street rape, mugging or street beatings are as alien as free diamond samples in supermarkets.

So, to the hard working, striving Romanians who have been working hard and contributing to British society for over a decade, I apologize for this tabloid-like misrepresentation by Channel4 tv. Those who know you, know this is not the real picture of the Romanian people.FB_IMG_1424725060056 FB_IMG_1424725057897 FB_IMG_1424725055941 FB_IMG_1424725053866 FB_IMG_1424725051726 FB_IMG_1424725049550 FB_IMG_1424725047430 FB_IMG_1424725045001 FB_IMG_1424725042798 FB_IMG_1424725040249 FB_IMG_1424725037206 FB_IMG_1424725035030 FB_IMG_1424725032924 FB_IMG_1424725030480 FB_IMG_1424725027971 FB_IMG_1424725022031 FB_IMG_1424725019572 FB_IMG_1424725017247 FB_IMG_1424725014664 FB_IMG_1424725011761 FB_IMG_1424725008527 FB_IMG_1424725005823 FB_IMG_1424725003496 FB_IMG_1424725001105 FB_IMG_1424724998460 FB_IMG_1424724995768 FB_IMG_1424724992174

Trust me. I’m a real estate broker!

As we enter another growth year, I thought it worth taking the time to reflect on how we can help buyers, investors and existing owners of Romanian real estate.

Now in our 8th year in Brasov and Bucharest, we have a significant amount of experience in most aspects of investment property, and good contacts for where we dont have the internal expertise, such as mortgages, legal help and company administration.  Many of our clients have come to us in desperation from other service providers. You don’t move property managers easily. Moving you bank is easier & how often in a lifetime does that happen?

So if someone moves from their Property Manager, there must be Continue reading

Interesting legal challenge on Romanian vehicle Pollution (a.k.a import) tax

Source: European Union Press Release database

The pollution tax introduced by Romanian legislation, levied on vehicles on first registration in Romania, is contrary to EU law

That legislation has the effect of discouraging the import and placing in circulation of second-hand vehicles purchased in other Member States

Romanian legislation introduced with effect from 1 July 2008 a pollution tax payable on first registration of a motor vehicle in Romania. The legislation does not distinguish between vehicles manufactured in that Member State and those manufactured abroad. Similarly, it does not distinguish between new and second-hand vehicles. Continue reading

Owning Romanian property, renting Romanian property, advice, news, insider tips & your stories on property and living in Romania!