Is a croatian bank account required to buy real estate in Croatia?

Šime Unić
Is a croatian bank account required to buy real estate in Croatia?

There are several things to pay attention to when foreigners decide to buy real estate in Croatia. Croatian law has different provisions when it comes to non-residents from the EU and non-resident foreigners outside the EU. Do they have to open a separate bank account in Croatia? Stay with us.

Buying real estate in Croatia can be a very exciting, but also quite stressful experience. One of the most common questions asked when buying real estate in the Republic of Croatia concerns a bank account. Namely, do they really have to open a Croatian bank account if they want to buy real estate here? In the following, we will give you a detailed answer to this question.

Different laws for citizens inside and outside the EU

First of all, it is important to understand that Croatia has different regulations on the purchase of real estate for foreign nationals. According to the Law on Property and other current laws in the Republic of Croatia, foreigners who are not EU citizens can buy real estate in Croatia only if they come from countries with which there is reciprocity for acquiring ownership rights to real estate in the Republic of Croatia. The request must be submitted to the registry office, and it must be accompanied by additional documentation that specifically refers to the following:

• the legal basis for acquiring ownership,

• land certificate,

• certificate on the legal status of the real estate,

• proof of citizenship,

• submit a power of attorney if you have a proxy.

After the Ministry has approved the purchase of real estate in Croatia, you can prepare the necessary papers and submit the application.

Double taxation agreements

The first step when buying real estate in Croatia, which applies to foreign citizens from the EU, is to check whether the country from which the foreigner comes is included in the list of countries with which Croatia has signed agreements on double taxation. They regulate tax obligations related to the purchase of real estate. If by any chance the country the foreigner comes from is not on the list, buying real estate in Croatia will be somewhat more difficult and complicated. If everything is in order, you must prepare basic documents such as an extract from the land register, building and use permit and energy certificate.

What is needed to buy real estate in Croatia?

After you have checked whether you are eligible to buy real estate in Croatia, the next step is to find the real estate you plan to buy. Ask for the help of real estate agencies or search for the ideal accommodation through real estate advertising websites. After finding a potential property, we advise you to hire a lawyer who will help you check the documentation and prepare the contract.

Why is it recommended to open a bank account in Croatia?

If foreigners want to buy real estate in Croatia, the law does not mandate the opening of a bank account. But you must have OIB. However, there are several good reasons why a Croatian bank account could be useful and desirable for you.

Opening a Croatian bank account can facilitate the process of paying real estate taxes and other bills related to real estate. A service that is also available at Croatian banks is a real estate valuation service that can be useful in case you want to find out the market value of the real estate you want to buy.

Please note that there are several types of bank accounts in Croatia. You can choose the account that best suits your needs and requirements. A frequent choice of foreigners is Erste banka.

Procedure for opening a bank account in Croatia for foreigners

It is not difficult or complicated to open a non-resident bank account in Croatia, but you need to know some basic things as well as the procedure for opening it so that everything goes "smoothly". Both legal and natural persons have the right to open a Croatian bank account. It is not necessary that they have a residence permit; they need OIB.

The documentation that foreigners must submit differs from bank to bank and depending on whether it is a natural or legal person. It is equally important to note that non-residents from the EU can be identified by a foreign identity card, while non-residents coming from third countries are identified solely on the basis of a valid passport. In that case, you should also prepare a certificate of OIB and the tax number of the country in which the future account owner is a taxpayer.

Persons whose residence is abroad submit documentation that shows the purpose of opening the account (for example, an employment contract, sales contract, certificate of education/study...). According to the submitted documentation, the possibility of opening a current account is checked.

In order to open a transaction account for non-residents, it is necessary to fill out a questionnaire for establishing a business relationship with legal entities and submit it to the e-mail address specified in the questionnaire. In the questionnaire, it is necessary to provide information based on the Law on Prevention of Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism. The bank will contact you back to establish a business relationship and submit the necessary documentation.

The documentation required to open a business bank account for legal and natural persons engaged in independent activity refers to:

• an extract from the register in which the non-resident is registered in the country where he has his registered office,

• a power of attorney signed by a non-resident with the signatures of persons authorized to dispose of the funds in the account,

• the last certified annual financial report on the non-resident's operations.

Once you have met all the conditions for opening a non-resident account, you are free to choose the bank where you want to open the account. Since there are many banks operating in Croatia, check which one is the most convenient and profitable for you. If it is about opening a business account, the bank may ask you for documents related to your company and information about the owners of the company.

The next step is to draw up a request to open a bank account. In the request, it will be necessary to provide personal data, addresses, the type of account you want to open and other necessary information. After the application is completed, submit it to the bank.

Upon opening an account, you will receive a bank card and access to online banking. In this way, you will be able to manage all your finances and perform transactions from the comfort of your home.

Can the account be opened online?

There are some banks in Croatia where non-residents can open a bank account online by simply submitting the necessary documents and filling out a special form. Although it is quite simple and there is no need to travel to Croatia for these formalities, signing the paperwork, especially if it is a business bank account, may require your presence in the country.

Latest articles