Temporary residence through real estate purchase in Serbia
Last year alone, over 120,000 foreigners were registered in Serbia, who point
out that our country is an extremely interesting destination for them, but not only
for tourism. Over 65,000 foreign citizens applied for temporary residence and
chose Serbia as their place of life and work for more than 90 days. One of the
most important things for all foreign citizens who plan to stay in Serbia for more
than three months is obtaining a residence permit.
In a conversation with the expert team of the “Welcome to Serbia” association,
has tied its successes for more than 10 years, among other things, to solving
immigration issues in Serbia, we came across interesting information about
current events and the needs of foreign citizens in Serbia.
The Association states that there are several ways by which foreign citizens can
obtain a residence permit, and among the most popular are:
• Real estate purchase
• Company registration
Serbia saw the great potential brought by foreign citizens, either as investors or
individuals, and accordingly created a favorable business climate that offers a
large number of benefits. That is why it is not surprising that a large number of
resident citizens use the opportunity to invest, expand their business or start
their own business from scratch in Serbia.
– Buying real estate in Serbia, i.e. ownership of real estate, is one of the simpler
and therefore very popular ways to obtain a residence permit – says the expert
team of the “Welcome to Serbia” association.
The Association also advises that before starting the buying process, you should
check whether you, as a foreign citizen, can buy real estate on the territory of
Serbia. This condition is fulfilled if there is de facto reciprocity between Serbia
and your country, that is, if there is a bilateral agreement between the two
countries that regulates this issue. For example Reciprocity, among other things,
exists between Serbia and Russia, which practically means that Russian
citizens have the right to buy real estate in Serbia and vice versa.
After you have determined that you have the right to buy real estate in Serbia,
you need to carry out a due diligence with the competent authorities, first of all
to confirm who owns the real estate, whether there is possibly a mortgage on
the immovable property, etc. In the case of buying real estate from an investor in
the construction phase, it is necessary to check which business group the
investor belongs to and what kind of reputation it has on the market. In this way,
you will minimize the risk of non-fulfillment of the contract within the agreed
The purchase agreement is certified by a notary public, and by entering it into
the real estate cadastre, you officially become the owner of the real estate.
However, it is not necessary to wait for the completion of this procedure to
obtain a residence permit.
– Although the purchase of real estate takes place in several steps, in order to
obtain a residence permit, it is enough to have the sales contract, which
considerably speeds up the process of submitting the application – they explain
from “Welcome to Serbia”.
A one-time tax of 2.5% of the purchase price is paid at the time of purchase, and
you are additionally obliged to pay an annual property tax, the amount of which
depends on the location, type of real estate, year of construction, etc. The right
to acquire ownership of real estate has both physical and foreign legal entities
with the condition that they have an established company in Serbia or in some
other way perform activities in Serbia.
– Numerous clients for whom we solved the residence issue decided on the
option of buying real estate. In the long term, buying real estate is always a
profitable option. Apart from the fact that foreigners will save on rent during their
life in Serbia, in case they leave the country, they will have permanent passive
income from renting. In the prologue to this, the statistics of the speed of renting
apartments in Belgrade speak. Of course, the demand for apartments in
Belgrade is constantly high, so selling is always an easily feasible option.
Traditionally, foreigners choose central city municipalities, whose popularity
does not decline, even when prices rise. They mostly want to be in the heart of
Belgrade, but increasingly they choose quieter parts of the city, which are close
enough to the center and far enough to avoid the city crowd. Their key criteria
are that there is a sufficient number of restaurants, supermarkets, sports
facilities, international schools, as well as a kindergarten, parking lot, park…
– A large number of Russian citizens have decided to live in Serbia. They point
out that they are very comfortable here and that the local population is very kind
to foreigners. The language is similar, so communication is not a big problem for
them. Also, the existence of Russian-speaking kindergartens and schools
significantly facilitates the life of entire families. It is often heard from many
foreigners that they could live in Serbia for a long time.
In addition to solving immigration issues, which includes obtaining a residence
permit through investments, opening a company and buying real estate, the
"Welcome to Serbia" association offers the possibility of opening a bank account
for individuals and legal entities.
– Our experts with many years of experience are here to advise you about the
tax, legal and accounting system, so that you can complete the complete
service in one place. This is especially important for foreigners due to the limited
possibility of communication in case they have to go from counter to counter of
They also offer professional assistance with establishing a foundation or
endowment, investing in cryptocurrencies, and a large part of the various
services is covered by the business concierge service, the need of which was
recognized during many years of business and developed accordingly.