In this article we will approach a plan to retire in Montenegro getting the best value deals for your money. If you want to travel for an extended period or time, we will analyze the costs involved and what you need to know to retire in Montenegro
Montenegro is located in the Southeastern part of Europe, and despite the current news about the ongoing social crisis in Europe regarding refugees and economic growth, you probably will never hear about Montenegro making the headlines. Why?
Montenegro is a tiny, mountainous nation with a population smaller than those of San Diego or Phoenix. It’s neither rich nor poor, allowing its residents to enjoy a considerably higher social stability than rich countries like Germany or Sweden, currently being flooded my migrants in search for a better life, or other famous destinations among retired people like Ecuador or Dominican Republic, which, due to poverty and other reasons, have low standards in terms of public safety.
Here is a step by step guide to retire in Montenegro:
Getting there: You can just fly to Podgorica, the country’s capital from most major airports in Europe (no direct flights from the US).
Most OECD countries, and all of those from the EU have a 90 day visa free access to Montenegro, so you can just get there, see if you like the beaches or the mountains, and make up your mind on weather you should consider Montenegro to be your new home. You can also choose it to spend the winter, where the temperature is considerably less depressive than those of North America and Northern Europe.
How to open a bank account in Montenegro?
If you want to move abroad you will certainly want to open a bank account in this location to avoid hefty ATM withdrawal fees or simply to pay your bills and buy food. Montenegro, unlike a number of European countries, allows any foreigner, even non residents, to open a bank account in the country, where most of the banks just require a valid passport to start the process.
Montenegro is using the Euro, so you don’t have to worry about currency devaluation like in most of its neighbors. Perhaps you can worry though, since the Euro dropped from 1.60 to 1 usd to 1.07, in a rather short period.
There are many EU banks operating in Montenegro, such as Hypo Alpe Adria Bank from Slovenia and Erste bank from Austria.
Getting your Montenegro residence permit.
There are 2 ways which I consider reasonable to get your papers in order in Montenegro.
The first involves buying a real estate. If you buy any real estate in Montenegro (except a land plot without anything built on it) it entitles you automatically to get a resident permit in Montenegro, that’s specially ideal if you want to retire entirely in Montenegro and do not carry any commercial activity in it.
The second way to retire in Montenegro legally is to open a company there. It doesn’t have to be a company that actually carries a real business activity, but regardless, there are costs involved in this process such as hiring an accountant and paying the minimum social contributions. These costs are roughly of 1500 USD per year.
In case you want to have some kind of business online or offline, Montenegro is an excellent option to be considered.
Apart from the advantages written above, Montenegro residents currently enjoy one of the most relaxed tax systems in the European continent, with income tax at 9% and VAT at 17%.
Now, let’s analyze what would be the monthly budget for 1 person to retire in Montenegro:
The rental price (long term) for a 35m2 renovated flat in Podgorica, the country’s capital would be hovering around 250 euros without common costs as we can see on this link here. Utilities should be around 50 euros.
Eating is a very personal choice, but, if you don’t eat in restaurants everyday, you will have a hard time spending more than 10 euros per day on that.
Internet in Montenegro is quite expensive. Both cable and mobile data are considerably more expensive than many other countries in Central and Eastern Europe. Expect to pay more than 20 euros per month for a decent internet package, and not less than 3 euros por GB in any prepaid mobile data plan.
All in all, with a budget of roughly 800-900 euro per month, you can have a very relaxed life in Montenegro. It can go down to 450, if you decide to buy your own real estate, which still makes of Montenegro a country chosen by a number of Brits, Scandinavians and others to spend their retirement years.
If your budget is 1500 usd or more per month, you will live like a King, as the minimum salary is just below 200 euros per month, and the average salary for 2015 is at 484 euros per month.
It is hard to determine how much one can spend per month, it depends entirely on your lifestyle and needs, but Montenegro remains one of my favorite destinations to be considered in the future.
On the last note, even if you wouldn’t consider Montenegro to live because the language is quite complicated, or for any reason, you should, at least, visit it once, as its unique fjords, mountains and sea coast are definitely worth every dollar you’d spend to get there.