Finding Housing as an Expat in Montenegro

1. What are the popular areas for expats to live in Montenegro?

Some popular areas for expats to live in Montenegro include:

1. Kotor: Known for its stunning bay and well-preserved medieval old town, Kotor is a popular choice for expats looking for a mix of history, culture, and natural beauty.

2. Budva: A vibrant coastal town with beautiful beaches, a lively nightlife, and plenty of amenities, Budva attracts expats who enjoy a more energetic seaside lifestyle.

3. Tivat: Home to the luxury marina Porto Montenegro and close to the international airport, Tivat is ideal for expats seeking a more upscale and cosmopolitan living experience.

4. Podgorica: Montenegro’s capital city, Podgorica offers a range of housing options, cultural attractions, and amenities, making it a convenient choice for expats looking for urban living.

Each of these areas has its own unique appeal and can cater to different preferences and priorities, so expats should consider factors like proximity to amenities, cost of living, and lifestyle preferences when choosing where to live in Montenegro.

2. Is it better to rent or buy property as an expat in Montenegro?

As an expat in Montenegro, the decision between renting or buying property depends on various factors that are unique to each individual’s situation. Here are some considerations to help you make an informed decision:

1. Financial Considerations: Renting may be more suitable if you prefer flexibility and are unsure about your long-term plans in Montenegro. Buying property can be a good investment if you plan to stay in Montenegro for the long term and are able to afford the upfront costs.

2. Market Conditions: Before making a decision, it’s essential to understand the property market in Montenegro. Research the trends, price fluctuations, and regulations to determine whether renting or buying is a better option for you.

3. Lifestyle and Preferences: Consider your lifestyle and preferences when deciding between renting and buying. Owning a property gives you more control over customization and long-term stability, whereas renting offers flexibility and minimal responsibility for maintenance.

4. Legalities and Residency Status: As an expat, ensure that you understand the legalities involved in buying property in Montenegro, including residency requirements, taxes, and regulations. Renting may be a simpler option if you are not familiar with the legal processes involved in property ownership.

Ultimately, the decision to rent or buy property in Montenegro depends on your individual circumstances, financial stability, and long-term plans. Consider all factors carefully before making a choice that aligns with your goals and situation as an expat in Montenegro.

3. What is the average cost of renting an apartment in Montenegro?

The average cost of renting an apartment in Montenegro can vary depending on the location, size, and condition of the property. In popular coastal cities like Budva or Kotor, the average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment can range from €400 to €600, while a two-bedroom apartment may cost between €600 to €900 per month. In the capital city of Podgorica, rental prices tend to be slightly lower, with one-bedroom apartments typically priced between €300 to €500 per month, and two-bedroom apartments ranging from €500 to €800 monthly. Additionally, utilities such as water, electricity, and internet should be factored into the overall cost of renting an apartment in Montenegro.

4. Are there any specific requirements for expats to rent property in Montenegro?

Yes, there are certain requirements for expats looking to rent property in Montenegro. Some of the common requirements may include:

1. Valid Passport: Expats will typically need a valid passport as identification when renting a property in Montenegro.
2. Resident Permit: In some cases, expats may be required to have a valid resident permit in Montenegro to rent a property legally.
3. Proof of Income: Landlords may ask for proof of income or financial stability to ensure that the expat can afford to pay rent.
4. References: Landlords may also request references from previous landlords or employers to verify the expat’s suitability as a tenant.
5. Deposit: It is common practice for landlords to require a security deposit from expat tenants, usually equivalent to one or two months’ rent.
6. Rental Contract: Expats will need to sign a legally binding rental contract outlining the terms and conditions of the rental agreement.

It is advisable for expats to familiarize themselves with the specific requirements and regulations related to renting property in Montenegro to ensure a smooth and hassle-free rental process.

5. What are the typical lease terms for rental properties in Montenegro?

In Montenegro, the typical lease terms for rental properties can vary, but there are some common practices to consider:

1. Length of Lease: Residential leases in Montenegro typically range from 6 months to 1 year. However, longer-term leases are also possible, especially for expats looking for stability in their housing arrangements.

2. Deposit: Landlords in Montenegro often require a security deposit that is equivalent to one month’s rent. This deposit is refundable at the end of the lease term, provided there are no damages or outstanding payments.

3. Rent Payment: Rent is typically paid on a monthly basis, with the payment due at the beginning of each month. Some landlords may accept quarterly or annual payments, but this is less common.

4. Utilities: The terms of utilities can vary depending on the rental agreement. In some cases, utilities such as water, electricity, and internet may be included in the rent, while in others, tenants are responsible for paying these bills separately.

5. Maintenance and Repairs: Landlords in Montenegro are generally responsible for major repairs and maintenance issues, while tenants are expected to take care of minor repairs and upkeep of the property.

It is important for expats to carefully review and understand the terms of their lease agreement before signing to ensure a smooth renting experience in Montenegro.

6. How can expats find reliable real estate agents in Montenegro?

Expats looking for reliable real estate agents in Montenegro have several options to consider:

1. Online Research: Utilize online platforms such as property websites, forums, and social media groups dedicated to real estate in Montenegro. Look for agents with positive reviews and ratings from previous clients.

2. Local Recommendations: Seek recommendations from fellow expats, locals, or other individuals who have recently engaged with real estate agents in Montenegro. This word-of-mouth referral can often lead to trustworthy professionals.

3. Professional Associations: Check if the real estate agent is a member of reputable professional associations or organizations in Montenegro. This can signify their commitment to industry standards and ethics.

4. Verify Credentials: Ensure that the real estate agent is licensed and registered to practice in Montenegro. This information can usually be confirmed through government or industry websites.

5. Face-to-Face Meetings: Whenever possible, arrange in-person meetings with potential real estate agents to gauge their knowledge, experience, and communication skills. This personal interaction can help build trust and confidence in their services.

6. Legal Assistance: Consider hiring a local lawyer or legal advisor who specializes in real estate transactions in Montenegro. They can provide guidance and ensure that the process complies with local regulations and safeguards your interests.

7. Are there any restrictions on foreign ownership of property in Montenegro?

In Montenegro, there are generally no restrictions on foreign ownership of property. Foreigners have the same rights as locals to buy, sell, and rent real estate in the country. However, there are a few important points to consider:

1. Agricultural land: Non-residents may face some restrictions on purchasing agricultural land, as there are certain limitations to protect local farmers.

2. Military zones: Foreigners are prohibited from purchasing property in military zones or near state borders for security reasons.

3. Coastal area restrictions: Some regulations may apply to buying property in coastal areas to preserve the environment and promote sustainable development.

4. Residency permits: Buying property in Montenegro does not automatically grant you residency rights. You may need to meet certain criteria to obtain a residency permit.

Overall, while there are no significant restrictions on foreign ownership of property in Montenegro, it is always advisable to seek professional legal advice before making any real estate transactions to ensure compliance with local regulations.

8. What are the steps involved in purchasing property as an expat in Montenegro?

Purchasing property as an expat in Montenegro involves several steps to ensure a smooth and legal transaction:

1. Find a Reliable Real Estate Agent: Engage the services of a reputable real estate agent who is well-versed in the local property market and can assist you in finding the right property that meets your criteria.

2. Due Diligence: Conduct thorough research on the property you are interested in, including its legal status, ownership history, any outstanding debts or encumbrances, and zoning regulations.

3. Hire a Lawyer: It is recommended to hire a local lawyer who can guide you through the legal aspects of purchasing property in Montenegro, including drafting or reviewing the sales contract and ensuring all necessary documents are in order.

4. Obtain a Unique Identification Number (UID): As an expat, you will need to obtain a UID from the Central Registry of Compulsory Social Insurance, which is required for any property transactions in Montenegro.

5. Sign the Sales Contract: Once all the necessary checks and due diligence are completed, sign the sales contract with the seller. It is advisable to have the contract translated into your language to ensure you understand all terms and conditions.

6. Pay Property Transfer Tax: As a buyer, you will be required to pay a property transfer tax, which is currently set at 3% of the property’s assessed value. This tax must be paid before the property transfer is registered.

7. Register the Property: The final step involves registering the property with the Cadastre Office and obtaining the title deed in your name. This process ensures that you are the legal owner of the property and have all the rights associated with ownership.

By following these steps and seeking professional guidance throughout the process, expats can successfully purchase property in Montenegro and enjoy their new home in this beautiful country.

9. What are the additional costs involved in buying property in Montenegro?

When buying property in Montenegro as an expat, there are several additional costs to consider aside from the actual purchase price. These costs may include:

1. Notary fees: You will need to engage a notary to oversee the property purchase process and ensure all legal requirements are met. Notary fees typically range from 0.5% to 1% of the property’s purchase price.

2. Property transfer tax: In Montenegro, a property transfer tax is levied on the purchase of real estate. The tax rate can vary depending on the location and type of property but generally ranges from 3% to 7%.

3. Legal fees: It is advisable to hire a local lawyer to assist with the property purchase process and ensure all legal aspects are properly handled. Legal fees can vary depending on the complexity of the transaction.

4. Real estate agent commission: If you use a real estate agent to help find a property, their commission fee is typically around 3% of the purchase price.

5. Valuation and survey costs: Before purchasing a property, it is recommended to conduct a valuation and survey to assess the property’s condition and value. These costs can vary depending on the size and location of the property.

6. Registration fees: Once the property purchase is complete, you will need to register the property in your name at the Cadaster office. Registration fees are based on the property’s value.

7. Utility connection fees: When moving into a new property, you may need to pay for connecting utilities such as water, electricity, and gas. These fees can vary depending on the provider and location.

It is important to factor in these additional costs when budgeting for buying property in Montenegro as an expat to ensure a smooth and financially sound transaction.

10. Are there any specific visa requirements related to owning property in Montenegro?

Yes, there are specific visa requirements for owning property in Montenegro as an expat. Here are some key points to consider:

1. Non-EU citizens are allowed to purchase real estate in Montenegro without any limitations, as long as they have a valid stay permit in the country.

2. If you are not a citizen of Montenegro or a country in the European Union, you will need to obtain a residency permit in order to purchase property in the country.

3. To apply for a residency permit, you will need to fulfill certain requirements, such as providing proof of sufficient funds to support yourself and any dependents, as well as proof of health insurance coverage.

4. It’s important to note that the process for obtaining a residency permit in Montenegro can be complex and it is recommended to seek the assistance of a legal expert or immigration consultant to guide you through the process.

5. Additionally, it is advisable to familiarize yourself with the latest visa and property ownership regulations in Montenegro, as these requirements can vary and may be subject to change.

11. How can expats protect themselves from property scams in Montenegro?

To protect themselves from property scams in Montenegro, expats should follow these steps:

1. Research reputable real estate agents and only work with licensed professionals to ensure the legitimacy of the property transactions.
2. Conduct thorough due diligence on the property and its background, including verifying ownership, checking for any outstanding debts or issues, and ensuring all necessary permits and paperwork are in order.
3. Be wary of deals that seem too good to be true, as these could be red flags for potential scams.
4. Consider hiring a local lawyer to assist with the legal aspects of purchasing property in Montenegro, as they can provide valuable guidance and protection.
5. Never make any payments or sign any contracts without fully understanding the terms and consulting with a legal expert.
6. Avoid cash transactions and insist on using secure payment methods such as bank transfers to track payments and ensure security.
7. Always visit the property in person and conduct a thorough inspection before finalizing any agreements to ensure that it meets your expectations and there are no hidden issues.
8. Stay informed about the local property market and regulations to avoid falling victim to common scams targeting expats.

By following these tips and being vigilant throughout the property buying process, expats can protect themselves from potential scams and ensure a smooth and successful housing experience in Montenegro.

12. What are the different types of housing options available for expats in Montenegro?

There are several housing options available for expats in Montenegro, catering to various preferences and budgets. These include:

1. Apartments: Apartment living is a popular choice among expats in Montenegro. They can range from modern, newly-built complexes to charming old buildings in the heart of historic towns.

2. Villas and Houses: Expats looking for more space and privacy often opt for villas or houses. These can be found in residential areas, close to the coast, or in the countryside, offering a peaceful retreat.

3. Condominiums: Many expats choose to live in condominiums, especially in coastal cities like Budva or Tivat. These offer amenities such as swimming pools, gyms, and security.

4. Rural Retreats: For those seeking a quieter lifestyle, Montenegro’s rural areas offer traditional stone houses and farmhouses amidst stunning natural landscapes.

5. Renting vs. Buying: Expats have the option to rent or buy property in Montenegro. Renting is a popular choice initially to get a feel for the area before committing to a purchase.

6. Real Estate Agencies: Utilizing the services of a reputable real estate agency can help expats navigate the property market in Montenegro and find housing options that meet their needs.

13. Are utilities included in rental properties in Montenegro?

In Montenegro, whether utilities are included in rental properties can vary depending on the specific rental agreement. It is quite common for some rental properties to include certain utilities in the monthly rent, such as water and sometimes even internet. However, it is not standard practice for all utilities to be included, particularly electricity and heating. In some cases, the tenant will be responsible for setting up and paying for utilities separately. It is essential to carefully review the terms of the rental agreement to determine which utilities are included and which ones the tenant is responsible for. Additionally, discussing this with the landlord or property management company before signing the lease can help avoid any confusion or misunderstandings.

14. What are the best websites or platforms to search for rental properties in Montenegro?

1. When searching for rental properties in Montenegro as an expat, some of the best websites and platforms to utilize include:

2. Real Estate Montenegro: This website offers a wide range of properties for rent in various cities across Montenegro, allowing you to filter your search based on preferences such as location, price, and property type.

3. Montenegro Prospects: Another popular platform, Montenegro Prospects specializes in real estate services and provides listings for both long-term and vacation rentals, catering to the needs of expats looking for housing options in Montenegro.

4. Property in Montenegro: This website offers a comprehensive database of rental properties, including apartments, villas, and houses, with detailed descriptions, photos, and pricing information to help you make an informed decision.

5. Airbnb: While known for short-term rentals, Airbnb also offers options for long-term stays in Montenegro. You can find a variety of properties listed by hosts, allowing you to explore different neighborhoods and accommodation types.

6. Facebook Groups: Joining expat groups or local property rental pages on Facebook can also be a valuable resource for finding housing options in Montenegro. Members often post listings or recommendations, providing insider insights and advice.

7. By utilizing these platforms, you can efficiently search for rental properties that meet your criteria, budget, and location preferences, facilitating your transition as an expat in Montenegro.

15. Is it common to negotiate rent prices in Montenegro?

Yes, it is common to negotiate rent prices in Montenegro. Here are some factors to consider when negotiating rent prices in Montenegro:

1. Market Conditions: The rental market in Montenegro can vary depending on the location and time of year. In popular tourist areas, landlords may be less willing to negotiate during peak seasons when demand is high.

2. Length of Stay: Landlords may be more open to negotiation if you are looking to rent long-term rather than short-term. Offering to sign a longer lease term can sometimes lead to lower monthly rent.

3. Property Condition: If you notice any issues or needed repairs in the property during your viewing, you can use this as leverage to negotiate a lower rent price.

4. Payment Terms: Some landlords may be willing to negotiate on rent if you offer to pay a larger sum upfront or if you can provide references from previous landlords.

5. Local Customs: Understanding the local customs and norms around renting can also help in negotiations. It’s common to haggle over prices in Montenegro, so don’t be afraid to make a reasonable counteroffer.

In conclusion, negotiating rent prices in Montenegro is a common practice, and being informed about market conditions, property condition, length of stay, payment terms, and local customs can help you in successfully negotiating a fair rent price.

16. Are there any cultural customs or norms to be aware of when renting or buying property in Montenegro?

When renting or buying property in Montenegro as an expat, it is important to be aware of some cultural customs and norms to ensure a smooth and successful process:

1. Relationships: Building a good relationship with the landlord or real estate agent is crucial in Montenegro. Personal connections and trust are highly valued in Montenegrin culture, so taking the time to establish a positive rapport can be beneficial in negotiations and securing a favorable deal.

2. Negotiation style: Negotiating the terms of a rental or purchase agreement is a common practice in Montenegro. It is expected that both parties engage in a back-and-forth process to reach a mutually satisfactory outcome. Being respectful, patient, and willing to compromise can help navigate the negotiation process effectively.

3. Property inspection: In Montenegro, it is customary for prospective tenants or buyers to thoroughly inspect the property before finalizing any agreements. This is an opportunity to identify any potential issues or discrepancies and ensure that the property meets your expectations.

4. Legal considerations: Familiarize yourself with the legal requirements and regulations governing property transactions in Montenegro. It is advisable to seek legal advice or engage the services of a reputable real estate agency to help navigate the legal intricacies and ensure compliance with local laws.

By understanding and respecting these cultural customs and norms when finding housing in Montenegro, expats can enhance their overall experience and avoid potential misunderstandings or challenges in the property market.

17. What are the types of amenities typically available in residential properties in Montenegro?

When looking for housing as an expat in Montenegro, there are several types of amenities that are typically available in residential properties:

1. Furnished vs. Unfurnished: Some properties come fully furnished with basic furniture and appliances, while others may be unfurnished allowing you to bring in your own furniture.

2. Air Conditioning and Heating: Given Montenegro’s varying climate throughout the year, having air conditioning and heating systems in the property is common.

3. Internet and Cable Services: Most residential properties come equipped with internet and cable connections, although the quality and speed may vary.

4. Parking: Whether it’s designated parking spots or street parking, having convenient parking options is important, especially in urban areas.

5. Security Features: Many residential properties in Montenegro offer security features such as CCTV cameras, intercom systems, and security guards in gated communities.

6. Balconies or Terraces: Enjoying the beautiful views of Montenegro is a must, and having a balcony or terrace in your property allows you to do just that.

7. Laundry Facilities: Some properties come with in-unit laundry machines, while others may have shared laundry facilities in the building.

8. Swimming Pool and Gym: In upscale residential complexes, you may find amenities like swimming pools, gyms, and spa facilities for residents to use.

9. Green Spaces: Properties with access to gardens, parks, or green spaces are popular among expats who wish to enjoy the outdoors.

10. Restaurants and Shops: Some residential complexes may have on-site restaurants, cafes, or shops, offering convenience to residents.

It’s essential to consider which amenities are important to you when searching for housing in Montenegro, as different properties offer varying features to cater to different lifestyle preferences.

18. How can expats find furnished rental properties in Montenegro?

Expats looking for furnished rental properties in Montenegro can explore several avenues to find suitable accommodation:

1. Real Estate Agencies: Working with local real estate agencies specializing in expat accommodation can be a convenient way to find furnished rental properties tailored to your requirements. These agencies often have listings of fully furnished properties suitable for expats.

2. Online Portals: Websites like, Airbnb, or local platforms such as or CrnaGoraVivo can offer a wide range of furnished rental options in Montenegro. These platforms allow expats to filter their search based on location, price, and amenities.

3. Social Media and Expatriate Forums: Joining expat groups on social media platforms or forums dedicated to life in Montenegro can provide valuable insights and recommendations from fellow expats who have already navigated the housing market in the country. This can be a great way to find hidden gems or get referrals for reliable landlords.

4. Networking: Leveraging personal and professional networks in Montenegro can also lead to finding furnished rental properties. Expats can ask colleagues, friends, or acquaintances for recommendations or connections to trusted landlords or property owners offering furnished accommodations.

5. Local Classifieds and Newspapers: Checking local newspapers, classified ads, and notice boards in expat-friendly areas can sometimes yield leads on furnished rental properties that may not be listed online. Expats can also consider reaching out directly to property owners advertising their rentals in these mediums.

By leveraging these resources and strategies, expats can increase their chances of finding the ideal furnished rental property in Montenegro that meets their needs and preferences.

19. What are the transportation options available in different residential areas in Montenegro?

In Montenegro, there are various transportation options available in different residential areas to help expats navigate easily and efficiently.

1. Podgorica: As the capital city, Podgorica has a well-developed transportation network including buses, taxis, and ride-sharing services. The city also has a train station and an international airport that connects residents to other parts of Montenegro and beyond.

2. Kotor: This coastal town is more compact and walkable, making it easy to get around on foot. Additionally, there are local buses that connect Kotor with nearby towns and cities.

3. Budva: Similar to Kotor, Budva is also pedestrian-friendly with buses available for longer journeys. The town is well-connected to other parts of Montenegro through a network of roads.

4. Tivat: Tivat is home to an international airport, making it convenient for expats to travel to and from this area. Local buses and taxis are also available for transportation within the town.

5. Herceg Novi: This town also has a bus station offering connections to other parts of Montenegro. Walking is a popular way to get around Herceg Novi due to its compact size.

Overall, transportation options in Montenegro are diverse and cater to the needs of expats living in different residential areas, whether they prefer public transportation, walking, or driving. The availability of these options can vary depending on the location, so it is advisable for expats to research and familiarize themselves with the transportation infrastructure in their chosen area.

20. Are there any expat communities or resources that can help with finding housing in Montenegro?

Yes, there are expat communities and resources that can be extremely helpful when looking for housing in Montenegro as an expat. Here are some key points to consider:

1. Expat forums and social media groups can be valuable resources for connecting with other expats who have insights and recommendations on housing options in Montenegro.

2. Local real estate agencies with experience in working with expats can provide tailored assistance in finding suitable accommodation that meets your needs and preferences.

3. Expatriate relocation services may offer comprehensive support in finding housing, navigating the local rental market, and handling the necessary paperwork and legalities.

4. International organizations and embassy contacts can sometimes provide guidance or recommendations on housing options for expats in Montenegro.

By leveraging these expat communities and resources, you can tap into valuable knowledge and support to facilitate your housing search and transition to living in Montenegro.