There Are Countless Benefits to Living in Croatia
If you have decided to live in Croatia, then it is important when buying a property to always be sure of your rights and title by going through a real estate agent. Because of foreigners’ increasing interest in Croatian property, most agents here are now effectively offering a one-stop-shop service with established notary, attorney, and builder contacts. Of course, it is important to establish an agent’s reputation before you commit yourself.
Education in Croatia is free, and is compulsory between the ages of 7 and 15. Many children start their education at the age of 3, at pre-school, which lasts until they’re 6. Elementary school lasts for eight years, followed by four years of secondary school. At this level, schools are divided into high school, technical, specialized, and mixed curriculum schools.
After completing high school, the brightest students go on to one of the country’s four universities in Zagreb, Rijeka, Split, or Osijek. Universities also offer free education, with particular emphasis on the sciences, medicine, and engineering. International schools are few, though there is the American International School of Zagreb, an independent, co-educational day school offering an educational program from kindergarten through grade 12. The curriculum is that of U.S. public schools, with instruction in English.
Learning the Language
If you have chosen to live in Croatia, then you will most likely want to learn to speak a little of the local language. You can find a number of language schools through the official tourism website: www.croatia.hr. Five useful words: nekretnina: real estate; prodaja: sale; dozvola: permission; najam: rent; hvala: thank you.
Residency Permits for Living in Croatia
If you do decide you’d like to live in Croatia, you’ll need to apply for a temporary residency permit. You’ll need several official documents and a stated reason for wanting to live in Croatia. This can be related to an investment, a business, family, employment, study, or real estate rental or purchase. Having a yacht moored in a Croatian marina also qualifies as a reason for being granted a residency permit.
To obtain a temporary residence permit, you need to apply in person at the local Ministry of the Interior (Ministartsvo Unutarnjih Poslova) office. A temporary residence permit is valid for one year and can be renewed. You will not be able to get permanent residency status in Croatia until you’ve held a temporary residence permit for five years. Again, foreign nationals have to apply for permanent residence with the MUP. Apart from five years of temporary residence, the only other ways you can gain permanent residency are through marriage to a Croatian citizen for at least three years, humanitarian reasons, or at the discretion of the Croatian government.