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Residence permit and tax residency in Serbia through real estate investment
The European market is one of the most important in the world, and that is why many people from other regions want to operate here. Entering the European giants can be very difficult and is extremely expensive because of the costly workforce, high taxes, and fees. Does this mean that it is impossible or not profitable to operate in Europe? What should a person do if they want to expand their businesses into the old continent and set up a bridge with Asia, or America, depending on the case? Should we stay away from Europe altogether?
The answer is no. There are still good opportunities to operate in the European market and Mundo always recommends the right jurisdictions. Choose those countries that will open the doors into this continent at the same time providing more interesting incentives and business advantages. We are talking about places like Cyprus, Estonia, Montenegro, Kaliningrad, or Serbia. This article presents a quick guide for acquiring residency and tax residency in Serbia through two possible ways: 1) real estate investment and 2) company formation.
Residence permit and tax residency in Serbia through real estate investment
This article contains facts and recommendations regarding the registration in Serbia of a tax residence and residence permit through real estate investment. You will learn about the related services provided by licensed immigration agents. We will explain the conditions for obtaining a residence permit and obtaining a tax resident certificate in Serbia, as well as what documents you need to prepare before applying.
When you are looking for the best option among the huge variety of business immigration programs, you can easily miss a very interesting program that is available in Serbia. Being a democratic European state located in the central part of the Balkan Peninsula, the Republic of Serbia, with its rich culture and vast historical heritage, offers businesspeople and entrepreneurs around the world the opportunity to obtain a residence permit and tax residence through real estate investment very cheaply and legally.
Residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through real estate investment – Conditions
According to the legislation of the Republic of Serbia, a residence permit in the country can be obtained by a foreigner residing in this state and having business and personal interests in its territory. In addition, it is necessary to spend in Serbia at least 183 days intermittently or continuously during a 12-month period (financial year).
Having fulfilled the above-mentioned residency requirement, a foreigner can, along with a residence permit in Serbia, obtain a tax resident certificate in this country. To do this, you will need to send an application to the Serbian tax authorities, confirming the fulfillment of the residency requirement.
The presence of “personal interests” can be proven by acquiring local real estate: an apartment, a house, or others. At the same time, in order to obtain a residence permit and a tax resident certificate in Serbia under this scheme, you do not need to spend a large amount of money. There are simply no requirements for the minimum amount of investment, therefore, all you need to do is find good deals on the real estate market. According to market analysts, the value of Serbian real estate starts at € 10,000 and the ceiling is not limited in any way.
As practice shows, the procedure for obtaining a residence permit in the Republic of Serbia lasts at least a month. As a rule, everything altogether takes about 8 weeks. Moreover, during the period of registration of a residence permit, only one or a couple of visits to Serbia will be required. To settle all the formalities in the country, you will have to stay for about two weeks. After the successful registration of the first residence permit, the applicant will be able to use it for 6 months. After this, it is possible to renew the residency status in 1-year periods.
Residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through real estate investment: What documents are required to obtain a residence permit and tax residence
Here we will explain the process of obtaining a residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through real estate investment. To begin with, a foreign investor needs to choose a property according to his/her wishes and preferences. At this stage, we recommend hiring the help of business immigration agencies whose team will help you choose the best option and minimize risks.
It is important to consider that, when buying Serbian real estate, one must be prepared to incur extra costs in addition to the value of the asset itself. We are talking about the costs associated with the payment of tax on the transfer of ownership. The rate of this tax is 2.5 percent of the transaction amount. You will also have to pay a commission fee to the real estate agency, the rate of which is 3 percent of the transaction amount.
Then, you need to contact a local lawyer for assistance with the subsequent procedures, having issued a limited power of attorney for the disposal of real estate. Such a power of attorney can be issued both in the investor's country of origin and in Serbia. The document will allow the lawyer to successfully complete all checks and procedures that are associated with the acquisition of Serbian real estate. It is important to note that, when issuing a power of attorney outside Serbia, it is necessary to translate this document into Serbian and certify it with an apostille. Moreover, in order to avoid possible bureaucratic problems, our experts advise translating the document directly in Serbia.
When registering a temporary residence ("white card" or long-term visa), which is valid for 90 days, the personal presence of the investor will be required. Fortunately, all procedures for processing documents related to obtaining the "white card" can be done in only one day.
For the subsequent receipt of a residence permit in Serbia, which is a stamp on the passport, the following documents will be required:
- Police clearance issued by the police in the applicant's home country (following the provisions of the Hague Convention, the document must be apostilled and its text must be translated into Serbian).
- Copy of your passport without mandatory notarization.
- Ownership certificate stating that the foreigner owns Serbian real estate. The certificate is an extract from the real estate cadastre of the Republic of Serbia.
- Documentary evidence of the availability of funds for subsistence in the form of a certificate from any bank in Serbia. To receive it, you will need to deposit 1000 euros in advance to your personal account in such a bank.
- A certificate of the applicant's health insurance and social security. Such a certificate must not be obtained from a Serbian insurance company, having previously issued insurance in it.
- CV translated into Serbian.
- Passport-sized photographs.
In general, the procedure for processing applications by the Serbian authorities does not take much time. It takes 2-3 days to apply and pass the interview. Another half a month is needed for the Serbian security specialists to check the applicant´s background and reliability (during this period, the investor's passport will be kept in the Serbian police vault).
It is important to note that, in order to obtain a residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through real estate investments, you do not need to undergo a medical examination. At the same time, in order to obtain a tax resident certificate of the Republic of Serbia with an apostille (affixed in accordance with the provisions of the Hague Convention and translated into the preferred language), it is not necessary to be present in the country. All documentation can be issued through a business immigration service provider.
Residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through real estate investment: Procedure
To obtain a residence permit, the client needs to invest in real estate (apartment, house, country house). Prices start at 10,000 euros but the cost of real estate and the minimum investment amount are not limited. The whole process takes at least 1–2 months and requires only one or two visits to Serbia for up to 14 days. The first permit is issued for a period of 6 months, and each subsequent permit is issued for 1 year (the issuance procedure is repeated each time).
The procedure for obtaining a permit and a list of required documents
-Property selection (we will provide you with a list of approved and duly checked properties according to your requirements).
-If necessary, we provide the services of a local specialist acting under a limited power of attorney (issued in the client's country or in Serbia) to carry out all checks and procedures when buying a property. If a power of attorney is issued abroad, a notarial certification with an apostille is required.
-Purchase of real estate (additional costs apply such as a transfer tax of 2.5%, to be paid by the seller, however, this depends on the agreement of the parties, and real estate agency commission up to 3%). The signing of the contract takes place in the presence of a notary. This can be done by a local expert acting under a limited power of attorney.
Processing time: depends on the client. It may take about 7 days.
Do you have questions?
Residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through real estate investment - How much does it cost
By using the services of a reliable and trusted licensed agent, you can save time and money as well as avoid issues. Such an agent provides the following services when applying for a residence permit and tax residence in Serbia:
-Help in filling out all the required forms.
-Registration at the Serbian police station (can take up to 90 days) and the issuance of a "white card".
-Translation of documentation into Serbian (an additional service for the provision of which agents engage third-party translators. The translation has an additional cost).
-Payment of national duty for immigration registration in Serbia.
-Assistance in choosing a verified property for subsequent use as an investment object.
-Opening a personal account in a Serbian bank.
-Registration in the Serbian tax office of the documentation confirming the investor's receipt of the tax resident status in the Republic of Serbia.
-Stamping the applicant's passport confirming the receipt of a residence permit in Serbia.
These services are provided in a package and our experts offer additional services after the applicant has obtained residency. The list of such services includes administrative support after signing a special contract with the investor, accounting services with a professional, and consulting support from a tax representative. Our partners work with professionals that have the corresponding licenses to operate in Serbia.
Residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through company registration - What documents are required to obtain a residence permit and tax residence
The procedure for obtaining a residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through the registration of a company is quite straightforward. First, you will need to deal with the documents that will be needed to register a Serbian company with a preliminary reservation of its name.
If desired, after obtaining a residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through company registration, a foreigner can also obtain a work permit. The procedure for processing an application for a work permit in Serbia usually takes 5-7 days. At the same time, the applicant does not have to be personally present in the Balkan country. To obtain a work permit, a foreign resident will need to provide the following package of documents:
-Documents confirming the possession of a residence permit.
-Apostilled copy of a diploma from an educational institution with notarization, translated into Serbian.
-Certificate confirming the registration of a Serbian company. It must be issued by a competent government agency.
-CV translated into Serbian.
Residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through company registration - Procedure
Step 1 - Rent of premises
It is necessary to rent premises for the company address and personal residence. The minimum price is 200 euros per month. The client will need to sign a lease agreement, make an advanced payment for 1 month and a deposit equal to 1 month´s rent, as well as pay the cost of the services of the real estate agency in the amount of the monthly rent. Our experts can take care of this and choose the premises. The client, if he/she wishes to, can change the company address in the future.
Creation of the company
This process takes place in the presence of a local notary and an official translator from the client's language into Serbian. The procedure takes 1 hour. The period of registration of a company is from 5 to 7 days, during which its name is checked for uniqueness. We strongly recommend that you check the name of the company before visiting a notary and, if you don’t have the time to do this, our experts can do this for you.
If the documents were notarized with an "unapproved" name, this name can be easily changed and the presence of the client is not required.
The registered office of the company will be the address of the rented premises and the company will receive a seal, which is mandatory in Serbia. To register a new company, the client does not need to be present in person. Our partners can take care of the process through a power of attorney which needs to be translated into Serbian and apostilled.
STEP 2 - Applying for a Residence Permit - Required Documents
(Requires personal presence within approximately 5 working days)
Company expenses for 1 year:
-Accountant services: at least 600 euros/year. Depends on the activity.
-Social security contributions: 1200 euros/year.
-Rent of premises: from 2400 euros/month.
-Irregular expenses such as receipt of correspondence, selection of premises, and other expenses: 600 euros/year.
-Individual health insurance: from 300 euros/year.
-The total amount for expenses is at least 5100 euros/year.
Residence permit and tax residence in Serbia through company registration
To save time and money, we highly recommend hiring the help of experts when applying for a residency permit and tax residence in Serbia through company registration. Mundo experts in Serbia can help you with the following:
-Reservation of the name for a newly registered company in Serbia.
-Payment of government fees and notary fees.
-Verification of the newly formed company director´s signature in court or notarization of such a signature.
-Execution of notarization concerning constituent documents.
-Registration of a new company in the Agency for the Registration of Legal Entities of the Republic of Serbia.
-Provision of the registration address of the company for a three-month period.
-Registration of a power of attorney for the procedures related to the creation of a company in Serbia and obtainment of a residence permit.
-Registration of the taxpayer identification number of the newly formed company.
-Obtaining an electronic signature for the owner of the company, which will be required when filing a tax return.
-Assistance in opening a bank account for a newly formed company.
-Registration of a residence permit based on the company registration in Serbia.
-Help in filling out all the required forms.
-Registration of an application at the police station for a "white card”.
-Translation of documentation into Serbian (this service involves third-party translators. The translation cost is approximately 20 euros per page).
-Payment of the state duty related to the procedure of immigration registration in the Republic of Serbia.
-Assistance in obtaining a work permit and a tax resident certificate.
-Assistance in choosing real estate for rent, which is necessary for the registration of the new company´s address.
-Opening a bank account.
In order to register a company in Serbia, you don´t need to prepare for several months nor deposit a huge authorized capital. In just a couple of months, you can neatly open a company with an authorized capital of 1 euro and with 1 owner and director. If you need your company faster, there is also the possibility of opening a foreign company. Branches for offshore companies are of particular interest: Serbia allows individuals from all countries to open a local branch and operate in the country, even those countries that have been branded as tax havens. Together with the next point, this makes Serbia an extremely attractive business jurisdiction.
Another possibility is to buy a ready-made company. In this case, you can be operating in only a few days and will probably have a bank account already in place.
Who are we and what can we do for you?
Our world of experts is now a reality and we, at Mundo, can proudly offer our readers a variety of services in different jurisdictions, with all the combinations possible and with virtually infinite opportunities for B2B and B2C connections, and a unique opportunity to access special deals, promotions, and investments in all financial areas and vehicles. Serbia is not the exception.
If you are interested in acquiring a Serbian residency and invest in the country´s economy whether through real estate or a company, contact our experts for more information. Find out which is the best European destination for your business.
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