5 things you should do when buying a property in Montenegro

1. Get to know the country and the areas
2. Use a reputable agency
3. Use a lawyer
4. Do your due diligence
5. Be prepared to be flexible or compromise on some of your wishlist

– Visit the country, visit different areas and locations to  determine where you would like to buy a property. Drive/walk around to get a feel for the place and location. Find out about the health system, taxes, political system, language etc… Also if possible visit the country  in high and low season, especially if you want to live there all year.
– Always use a reputable agent with their own web site and an office,  avoid buying a property via people who are not professional real estate agents, in the best case you will end up paying more for the property and in the worst case something will go wrong and it will be too late to rectify it. A professional realtor will add value as they know the process in detail, can negotiate the best possible price and you will have someone to answer any questions and help with the many small issues that always seem to come up. Good agents value their reputation and the damage of one unhappy client is much bigger compared to one lost sale.
– Use a lawyer. Although the system has much improved with the introduction of notaries, it is still very important to hire a lawyer to protect your own interests. The agents are facilitating the purchase process and negotiating on your part, but only the lawyer is working solely for you. Hiring a lawyer is especially important when buying land or a house. Even if all is in perfect order there can be administrative mistakes which can  make your life difficult (please see: My experience with Land registry Budva).
– Do your due diligence, check everything no matter how unimportant it may seem, don’t hesitate to ask questions and seek explanations. Always ask for multiple offers, recommendations and research other people’s experiences.
– Finally, be flexible. We all have a property in our minds that is perfect, unfortunately the reality usually cannot match our expectations. Decide what is the most important feature (views, proximity to the sea, amenities) and be flexible about the others.