Your Questions Answered


How you can find out information about my property

You have 2 options:

  • The Katastar or the Land registry office.
  • You’ll need to obtain a land parcel number before you can access the details online as the address isn’t enough.

What are the documents related to land usage & which shows that the land is fit for building?

There are multiple documents that come with land, and they all have similar names, which can be very confusing to buyers not used to Croatian land purchases.

The first is the Certificate of Land Ownership, which can be confusing, as you often see the words “Arable” “Vineyard”, or “Forest”, etc.

What you need to do is request the Certificate of Land Use, which gives you a breakdown of what can or cannot be built on the land. For this you need the Parcel Number, which you then use to check the local Land Registry Database.

Which documents do I need when buying a property?

IF any of the following documents are missing DO NOT BUY THE PROPERTY.

All properties:

  • Copy of the Cadastral Plan.


  • Floor Plan defining common areas, etc.
  • Energy Certificate.


  • Energy Certificate.
  • Construction & Use Permit

Building land:

  • Location Information.
  • Land Access.
  • Infrastructure Conditions.

General Questions

As an EU Citizen can I buy a property in Croatia?

Yes, but they are currently limited to construction-based property, e.g. building land, houses and apartments.
When Croatia enters Schengen, this will expand to agricultural land too.

As a Non-EU National can I buy property in the Republic of Croatia?

Yes, but you are limited to houses, apartments, building plots, etc. For further details on what you can buy it’s best to speak to an Agent.

How can I be sure the Property I want is being legally sold?

Besides hiring a trusted real estate Agent that has their own Legal Service, we highly recommend you get your own lawyer to perform due diligence on your behalf.

Is it possible to complete a real estate Sales Contract entirely from outside Croatia?

Yes. A Contract can be completed from abroad.

It is a requirement of Croatian Property Law that the Public Notary notarise the signatures of the Sellers on the Final Contracts. There is no need to notarise Buyers’ signatures, as buyers just need to sign the Final Contract & send it back via a courier service to Croatia ( we suggest DHL). Or you can simply hire a lawyer.

A Croatian Citizen/Seller outside the country needs to go to either the Croatian Embassy or Consulate in the country they are currently located. Some countries don’t have an Embassy or a Consulate, so the nearest is a compromise.

A Foreigner/Seller can also have a Contract (or other legal document) verified outside Croatia for the purposes of selling real estate in Croatia. They need to provide a signed notarised Final Contract together with an accompanying Apostille Seal, if needed. For more details follow this link.

The process of notarizing & obtaining the Apostille Seal takes up to 10 days. Documents must then be delivered via courier to Croatia, and must be translated into Croatian language by an official Court Translator, before it is able to be used as a Legal Document.

This alternative way to purchase Croatian property requires thorough planning, so please consult our office before commencing this process.

Is it safe for me to buy property in Croatia?

The Croatian property market doesn't have the best reputation, and you need to be aware of potential fraud and misrepresentation. Not to mention slow-paced administration processes making everything more complicated than it needs to be.

The best way to avoid scams is to take your time, do your homework, and carry out due diligence. It's highly recommended to appoint an Independent and experienced Real Estate Lawyer, with a good reputation, and who works separately from the Estate Agent.

Even though Istria is low-risk compared to other areas of Croatia, we still recommend having your lawyer carry out due diligence on your behalf.

When signing the pre-terms to reserve a property, who do I give the Deposit to?

Having a third party, such as your Estate Agent, hold the deposit in a Special Account is the safest option, although it may involve additional fees with some agencies.

Can I buy property in Croatia & get Residency?

Croatia doesn’t have a Golden Visa scheme, through which you can invest in a property to gain permanent resident status.

However, there is an alternative through which you can use your property purchase to remain in Croatia for longer than the 90 days permitted as a tourist within the Schengen area.

According to Croatian law, you can potentially be granted temporary residence for up to 9 months a year (6 months + the 3 months you’re permitted to stay as a tourist) when you buy a property. You won’t be able to work, and there’s unfortunately no route to permanent residency or citizenship.

However, this could be a good option for retirees, or people looking to live in Croatia for part of the year. You can apply for it every year, so you can keep coming back to your home in Croatia.

Here you can read more about Residents for Foreigners.

Is it easy to transfer Direct Real Estate Accounts to my name?

Not really. Bureaucracy in Croatia is a nightmare, and even with the support of your agents and a lawyer it can take a few months.

Don’t worry though, if you work with us, you can sign over the Power of Attorney, and we’ll do all the heavy lifting for you.

What is the real estate Reservation Offer & why do I sign it?

It’s the pre-purchase Agreement that confirms the price of the property, and stops others from being able to make an offer.

Most importantly, it legally binds the buyer and the seller, and protects them if the other party decides to end the transaction before the deal reaches completion.

What is the process for buying real estate?

Check out the Buyers’ Roadmap.

What are the usual Deadlines & how large is the Deposit?

The deposit is 5% of the Property Value into a special Escrow Account, and once it is paid the rest of the deal usually takes around 30 days to complete.

Should I hire a Lawyer when buying real estate in Croatia?

Yes. Having an independent lawyer with experience in the Croatian real-estate sector is critical to protecting your interests.

If you don’t have one, give us a call and we can make some recommendations.

Are there Protected Accounts in Croatia?

Yes, they are called ESCROW Accounts and we mainly use them to store deposits.

What is the OIB & why is it necessary?

Your OIB is your Personal Identification Number within Croatia, and is needed in almost every aspect of the Croatian bureaucratic system, from opening bank accounts to paying taxes.

How do I open a Bank Account in Croatia?

You need to go in person with your photo ID and your OIB. It’s recommended that the account you open is in kunas and one other foreign currency, and has access to internet banking.

What’s an Energy Certificate, and who needs it?

The energy certificate gives you the energy grade for the property, and it needs to be renewed every 10 years. Basically, everyone selling or renting out a property needs one, although there are exceptions once you own the property, such as if it’s a holiday home or a holiday let. 

When buying a property, which Services are included in your commission?

With a Basic Property Search the following Services are included in the commission:

  • Negotiations,
  • Preparation of the Property Reservation,
  • Coordination with your lawyer, to prepare the contract & notarise signatures,
  • Dealing with the courts to obtain your Certificate of Ownership,
  • Participation in The Handover of Real Estate Agreement,
  • Transferring utilities to you, the new Owner, and
  • Organising a Property Inspection.

What is the difference between the Basic and Premium Real Estate Search?

The Basic Search is included in our commission, and covers all the properties already on our books.
The Premium Search is where for a fee, we become your Personal Representative in Istria. You can see more information here.

Can Foreign Citizens get a Mortgage in Croatia?

Yes, but it’s probably easier to get one in your home country.

Which Documents are required to Buy?

  • ID card or passport,
  • Proof of citizenship (passport),
  • OIB.

How to avoid possible problems when buying real estate?

Use a reputable Estate Agent and hire a Lawyer to do due diligence.

What areas do you cover? Do you specialise in any particular areas?

Our main operating area is southern Istria and the coast - so Pula, Medulin, Fazana, Rovinj, Barban, Premantura, Liznjan, Motovun, Grožnjan, Svetvinčenat and Žminj.

For other parts of Istria and Croatia, we can recommend our Partner Agencies.

What are the Property Taxes on Apartments?

0.3 EUR per metre squared. Communal tax averages at around 100 EUR per year.

How much does it cost to build a House?

That depends on the size, type and material. It can range from 200-800 EUR per metre squared + utilities & additional costs.

We recommend talking to an Architect or a Construction Company for a more accurate estimate.

Is it good to Secure your Property?

Installing security is always a good idea, especially if it isn’t your permanent residence, plus it helps with your insurance premiums.

What do Insurance Companies want to know?

The following info:

  • Address,
  • Owner/Insured Info,
  • Year of Construction,
  • If an apartment - which floor it’s on,
  • If the house - how many floors there are,
  • Real Estate Area (gross),
  • Auxiliary Building Description (summer kitchen, pool, etc..), and
  • If the facilities are rented to Tourists.

What is the role of a Notary in Croatia?

A Public Notary is a qualified attorney appointed by the Government of the Republic of Croatia. His task is to ensure that all documents signed with a Public Notary are valid, legitimate and binding.

They confirm that the documents have been translated from a foreign language to Croatian accurately by an authorised Court Interpreter, and that they are valid & authentic. Also, they can offer third party services in the transaction.

In Croatia, contracts are legally binding only if they have a Public Notary’s Seal.

It is important to emphasise that the Notary does not confirm the content of the contract, but verifies only the signature of the Seller.

What is a Tabular Statement?

The Statement by which the seller declares that the buyer has received the entire amount of the contracted purchase price, following which allows the buyer to transfer the ownership rights in the land register’s office.

What is the Preservation of Ownership Rights & when is it used?

It’s a legal measure to protect the ownership rights whilst the transaction is being carried out (you can track them online). Once the seller has withdrawn the money they are owed & the deposit, the lawyers and your Agents are notified, and are able to produce a Tabular Statement.

Should the buyer and the seller Certify their Signature?

No, under Croatian law only the Seller has to notarise their signature. 

Buy To Rent

Do I need a company if I am a citizen of Croatia, Switzerland or the EEA?

Citizens of EEA Member States and Switzerland do not need a company to rent accommodation. This means you can rent out any accommodation that is owned by:

  • You,
  • Your spouse,
  • Your extramarital partner,
  • Your life partner,
  • Your direct relative,
  • A family member.

Do I need a company as a citizen of a non-EU country?

If you are a non-EU citizen that intends to rent accommodation, you must open a company to do so. The company must be one of the following structures:

  • Obrt (a trade company)  
  • Trgovačko društvo
  • d.d. (joint-stock company) 
  • j.d.o.o. (simple limited liability company)
  • d.o.o. (limited liability company)

If you open an obrt or trgovačko društvo, the business entity must own the property and be listed as the owner with the land registry.

How do I legally rent a property to tourists?

Renting out an apartment to tourists in Croatia isn’t as simple as just listing it on Airbnb.

There is a process everyone, regardless of nationality, must go through to legalize the accommodation.

As part of legalization, you (or your company) must apply for a receive a “decision” or “solution” that allows you the privilege of renting accommodation

Once this approval is received, you may offer 2 services:

  • Accommodation
  • Bed and Breakfast

Renting without approval is considered an unregistered provision and may subject you to sanctions, ranging from 2.000 to 30.000 kuna in fines. The fines are regulated by the Zakon o ugostiteljskoj djelatnosti (Law on catering) in the section VIII. PREKRŠAJNE ODREDBE (Misdemeanor provisions). 

What is Tourist Rental Tax?

This is the tax on income from tourist rentals. It depends on the property owner`s citizenship and if the person is registered for VAT their own country. For more details, please contact us and we will put you in touch with tax and accounting experts.

Who can rent out an accommodation in Croatia?

Citizens of Croatia, EEA member states and the Swiss Confederation who are also residents of Croatia can rent out accommodation as individuals, without a business.

All other nationalities must open a company to rent accommodation. This is because the company is treated as a “Croatian national” in the eyes of the law.

What is the average return on investment for tourist rental properties?

That depends on multiple factors such as location, facilities, number of bedrooms etc.

For an accurate estimation on the potential returns on a holiday let we recommend speaking to a local travel agent with specific knowledge of the local tourism market.


What is the Tax for Transferring Real Estate in Croatia?

3% of the value listed in the contract, though if the tax authority decides you underpaid, they will charge you 3% of the higher estimate.

This tax is paid by the Buyer.

What is the Deadline for Registration & Payment of Real Estate Taxes?

If the buyer is based in Croatia, then the Notaries report the contracts have been certified, and the buyer doesn’t have to apply to the tax office.

For those outside the county, you need to submit the documentation to the Tax Office which can take up to 30 days.

Once the information has reached the Tax Office, you have 15 days to make the payment.

Who pays the Sales Tax?

The Buyer, unless the contract states otherwise.

Do I always have to pay Sales Tax?

No, but these cases are the exception rather than the rule.

These are cases usually when you buy as a VAT registered company, and you can show that VAT is included in the purchasing price, in which case you cannot be double taxed.

What is the Annual Property Tax in Croatia & what else might I have to pay?

In Croatia, every property which is not a primary residence has to pay a local Property Tax.

The amount is specified by the local government body, so it varies by location.

It usually ranges from EUR 0,75 to 2 per m2 each year. This applies to holiday homes and second homes, but not your primary residence.

There are some additional taxes you should be made aware of too:

  • Property sold within 2 years of its acquisition is subject to 25% Capital Gains Tax, though any property held for longer is exempt from this charge.
  • Rental Property is taxed at 12%.
  • Estate and Gift Tax is 5%.

And here’s an idea of additional costs:

  • Utility bills for an 80 sq. m. apartment in Croatia are approx. (€30/month).
  • Buyers can expect to pay electricity at €0.076/kW•h during the day & €0.04/kW•h at night.
  • Gas costs are €0.05/(m³/h).
  • Waste Removal Fees range from €5 to €10 per month.
  • Water costs are €5–20 per month.
  • Fees for Cleaning & Property Maintenance are around €10–15 per 1h.
  • Insurance for an apartment of 60 sq. m. costs about €135 per year, for a house of 100 m2 is approx.  €300.

Do I have to pay Tax on the Price Difference when selling my property?

Only if you have owned the property for less than 2 years, or you are selling 3 or more similar properties in a 5-year period.

Is now a good time to invest in the Croatian Real Estate Market?

Yes. Croatia is a growing economy, and is becoming an ever more popular tourist destination, which is reflected in the growing housing market.

What Currency do I pay in?

Although listings are often in Euros at this moment, you legally have to pay in Croatian Kuna.

Is there a 'Capital Gains Tax' when selling real estate in Croatia?

Yes. It's 24% of the price difference between when you bought and sold the property, but this only applies to properties you have owned for less than 2 years, or when you are selling 3 or more properties in a 5-year period.

Note: The regulations for companies that buy & sell real estate differ, and require Specialist advice.

Not feeling confident about buying a property on your own?

Contact us and we will make it a smooth sailing!

I need help