How to Move to Montenegro (EU and Non-EU Citizens)

How to move to Montenegro? Discover in this post how you can obtain a residence permit in Montenegro to work, study or retire.

kotor perast montenegro

Are you looking to move to Montenegro? Learn how you can immigrate to the country and the reasons why you should consider doing it.

Montenegro Overview

Montenegro is a country in Southern Europe, known for its scenic beaches on the Adriatic coast. Montenegro is also one of the youngest countries in the world, becoming independent just in 2006, after a referendum that separated Serbia and Montenegro in two countries.

Currently Montenegro is a highly attractive country for investors, retirees and business people. The country has a high quality of life, beautiful nature and a friendly immigration policy towards both EU and non-EU members.

How to Move to Montenegro?

There are many ways to immigrate to Montenegro, as we will discuss below. One of the huge advantages of Montenegro is that, you can come to Montenegro first and then apply for a residence permit after (which is not the case for most EU countries). This way, you won’t have to wait in your country of current residence as your documents will go back and forth to the embassy.

However, you can only do this if your passport allows you visa free entry to Montenegro. This list includes most of the countries in Europe (including Russia and Turkey), most countries in South and North America, as well as Australia, New Zealand and some countries in East Asia.

Now, let’s discuss the options to get your residence permit in Montenegro.

Montenegro Residence Permit by Real Estate Acquisition

Montenegro is one of the few countries that allow foreigners to acquire residence by buying real estate. There are some restrictions to this, but broadly, you can get this type of residence permit by buying property, which can be a house or an apartment. You have to own at least 50% of the property in order to qualify for residence.

You can read more about it on Nur Properties website.

Montenegro Residence Permit by Opening a Company

One of the most popular options to obtain a residence permit in Montenegro is by opening a company. If you are the owner of a company incorporated in Montenegro, you can apply for a residence permit in Montenegro. However, you must own at least 51% percent of the shares of the company to qualify.

This can be a good option if you are a digital nomad and want to have Montenegro as your base. It also can be a good option if you want to work with real estate or hospitality, which are popular options for foreigners in Montenegro. 

Montenegro Work and Residence Permit

If you find a job in Montenegro, it is relatively easy to get a work permit (in fact, the hardest part is finding the job). Montenegro is also a popular place for temporary workers from neighboring countries during the summer season. 

Student Residence Permit

Every student enrolled in a higher education institution in Montenegro is also eligible for a residence permit.

Permanent Residence Permit in Montenegro

After living in Montenegro for five years, you will be able to apply for your permanent residence permit in the country.

One of the disadvantages of Montenegro is that your time out of the country is quite limited if you want to make it count towards permanent residency. While you are on a temporary permit, you have to notify the police each time you leave the country for more than 30 days.

You can read more about it in the Montenegro Government website (in Montenegrin).

Advantages of living in Montenegro

montenegro residence permit

Here are some advantages of living in Montenegro as an Expat:

Easy Residence Permit for EU and Non-EU Citizens

One of the no brainer advantages of living in Montenegro is how easy and flexible it is to get a residence permit, for both EU and non-EU citizens. Whether you want to work in Montenegro, become a remote worker while being in Montenegro, or just retire, there are plenty of options that might be suitable to your needs.

Perfect Place to Retire

Montenegro is a perfect place if you want to retire. It is safer than most Western European countries, and has a good overall level of public services, including health care.

Despite its small size, it has excellent connectivity. It has directly flights to most European key cities like Moscow, Frankfurt, London and Istanbul. 

Low Cost of Living

Montenegro is located in the Balkans, one of the most affordable regions of Europe. Cost of living in the country is lower than in Western Europe when we talk about day-to-day costs like groceries and transport, but also for long term purchases like real estate.

Real estate in the country is especially inexpensive if you are not aiming at the coastal area. The capital Podgorica has some of the lowest prices per square meter among European capitals.

Low Corporate and Income Tax

Another huge advantage of Montenegro are its low taxes, both at  individual as well as corporate level. Corporate taxes are currently at 9% in Montenegro, one of the lowest levels in the European continent. Personal income tax ranges from 9% to 11%, plus a surcharge depending on the municipality you live. In almost all cases you will end up paying less than 13% total income taxes at a personal level.

You can read more about taxes in Montenegro here.

Stable Economy and Euro Currency

Even though Montenegro is a small country, it has a quite stable economy. Montenegro uses the euro as its currency, reducing risk of potential inflation or national currency devaluation. 

Interest rates are low, and you can keep funds in different currencies in most Montenegrin banks.

Citizenship and Expansion of EU 

Montenegro is in talks to become an European Union country, although there is no defined date for the country to join the bloc. You can apply for citizenship after you become a permanent resident of Montenegro.

Alternatively, Montenegro also has a program of citizenship by investment. The minimum amount required to get Montenegrin citizenship by investment is 350.000 euros. This includes a minimum investment of 250k in real estate, plus a 100k non-refundable donation.

Other Resources to Move to Montenegro

If you want to travel or immigrate to Montenegro you might want to check some of our other content. Check Montenegro and where to stay in Montenegro.