How to apply for permission to buy Croatian property

Non-EU nationals are required to get permission to buy property, unless they are buying via the company route.

EU citizens have an automatic right to buy a property in Croatia. The information on this page is for non-EU citizens only.

Here is how to go about getting that permission.

Private Purchase: Making the Application for Permission to Buy

Option 1: Appoint a lawyer to do the work

The application for permission to buy a property in Croatia is made to the Ministry of Justice.

Although it is possible to make the application without help (how to do this is explained below), it is common practice for foreign buyers to appoint a lawyer to do this work on their behalf.

Sometimes the lawyers will include the application and the follow-up in their legal fee but sometimes they do not, so it is a good idea to check at the outset when appointing the lawyer.

Good advice to anyone who appoints a lawyer to do this work is to ask him or her for the postal
receipt to prove that the application was made.

Applications should be sent by registered post and, the post office will deliver a receipt proving delivery.

Option 2: Apply Direct to the Ministry of Justice

You can only apply in writing. If you apply in any other way, or your application is incomplete, then the The Ministry of Justice will not process your application.

The application can either be handed over directly at the court admission desk in Zagreb or it can be mailed to:
Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Croatia,
Civil Law Administration Department,
Dežmanova 6,
10000 Zagreb

The following documents need to be attached to the written application:

  1. Original document (or certified copy) showing how you acquired the property (i.e. the sales contract if you bought it and the will if you inherited it);
  2. Original document (or certified copy), less than six months old, providing evidence of the seller’s ownership of the property you wish to buy. In almost every case,this means that you need to include an original Vlasnicki List. If you do not send the original, then you need to send a notarized copy.
    The Vlasnicki List is the A4 page that the land registry will print off for you that shows who their records say is the registered owner of a particular property. ;.
  3. An original letter (not a copy!) from the local urban planning office to confirm confirmation that the property is in the building zone.;.
  4. Proof of citizenship for foreign buyers (certified passport copy) or proof of the legal entity status (court register excerpt), if the buyer is a foreign legal entity;.
  5. If you have appointed someone to make this application on your behalf, then the power-of-attorney must be included in the application. This can either be the original document you signed or a notarized copy.
  6. Proof of payment of the application fees(see below)

In theory, the Ministry of Justice will contact you (or your agent) to let you know if some documents are missing from your application. However, in practice, it may be advisable to double-check by calling them!

The Fees

Apart from the documents and deeds listed, it is necessary to attach a proof of the administrative fee payment to the application.
According to Article 21 of the Amendment to the Law on Administrative Fees and Taxes (Official Gazette no. 163/03), or more precisely: tariff number 74.a, the following levels have been set for administrative fees:

  1. 50kn for the application
  2. 100kn for the decision on acquiring real property
  3. 20kn for any addition to the application (for when certain documents are missing).

Remark: The 100kn administration fee will be charged in postage stamps. However, any amount greater than 100kn must be paid by postal money order to the Republic of Croatia Budget account no.: 1001005-1863000160, putting no. 24 in the first box of the payment slip, and 5002 in the second box. You need to also include your Croatian Personal Id Number (called the OIB) on the payment slip.

The filled-in payment slip (or the stamps if the amount is less than 100kn) should be added to the included with all the other documents when making the application.

Contacting the Ministry of Justice

You can contact the Ministry of Justice on the following number, 00385 1371 0779.
They will only accept calls from foreign owners on Wednesdays.
You must have your case number (UPE) ready when you call.