Know more about Split, our 'New Home' - Temporary residence?

Hello! My husband and I live in Chicago, he has a business here in the States but are very interested in eventual renewable temporary residence in Croatia and will be visiting this winter to do some recon. We have been to Split, Zagreb and Dubrovnik before. We are looking at Split as our new "home"...

Tell us anything you want about your experience in Split - the people, the social life, daily life, climate, food, living accommodations (we will rent at first) - anything you think we might like or need to, volunteer opportunities (want to have a local hobby and opportunity to be busy, involved in community...)

We are very social, enjoy good people, food, wine and adventure, music...we have driven in Croatia very nice but prefer to be in walking distance to activities, restaurants, the sea etc...

Are you there as a temporary resident? Any tips on that? Application process itself and also - easy to renew? How long is temporary residence? I am calling consulates and embassies but personal experiences are best please!

How do you obtain heallthcare? How is it?

What areas of Split are you living in? Any good long term rental agencies you recommend? Thanks for taking the time to write back! I am sure we will love to hear everything! I know this is  lot we are just excited for our dream to come true!

Best and thank you in advance for your responses!

Hi. The thing to know about moving here is if you don't have health insurance, get Croatian travel health insurance. When you get that, they issue you an OIB. With that you can open a bank account, see doctors (as mentioned below) and rent an apartment or buy property.
We went to with information on the visa process etc. There is also which is self explanatory just to keep you eager to come.

What there is no mention of is that when you start your visa process you will need a whole year's rent in the bank with a notarized contract signed by the landlord that will be taken from your account when you get your visa, also 2700 kuna per month for the year plus 500 kuna per month for a spouse, in the bank (you can use this during the year as needed) and on the day you go to apply you will need a letter from the bank (easy to obtain, it just takes a few minutes) with that day's account balance on it and signed by a bank officer. We use Zagrebacka bank and eventually we will have our US social security directly deposited to it. It is the only one we can do this with.

So, come to Croatia, get your health insurance for the OIB, if you already have health insurance you can go to the finance office to obtain a OIB, open a bank account and start filling it with the necessary funds, find a place, arrange for the contract to get signed etc., obtain the visa form at the main police  station (the site above might have them accessible but they change - we had two versions) and where it says reason for wanting the visa say to pay the rent - that is what we were told to do by our landlord - have your pictures taken already and that day's letter from your bank. With all this done you can get it taken care of at once. When they have made copies of everything they will instruct you to go to the photo processing shop across the way to buy a 20 kuna stamp per visa application that you will bring back and then you get your document.

Also, going before the tourist season starts will get it in the works quicker. They will give you a document that says you've applied so you can stay past the 90 days. We started our process a month after arriving and two months before the 90 days was up, so the rent contract started from the 91st day of our arrival and we paid by the month for two months. We were told we can't leave the country until we have or visa processed by the police officers that came to visit us a month after we started the process. It is now 2 months past the 90 days and we are still waiting for our visas.
The other thing you want to know is that, since you are legally not a resident, there will be a 12% per month tax to pay. Just to keep in mind when negotiating you contract.

The closer to the beach the higher the rent. That 300 per month is definitely on the low side. But we wanted furnished, so maybe I'm wrong about that.

Still worth every bit of inconvenience to be here.

Good luck.

We live near Firule beach and the hospital. We were just lucky to find our landlord. We had rented an airbnb for a month to give us time to find something. Our landlady knew someone who was looking for a long term tenant. We are very happy. It is two blocks to the beach, 15 to 20 minute walk to the green market and palace. The bus system is easy to figure out pretty quickly (we don't have or want a car) from Promet website and life is good.

"What there is no mention of is that when you start your visa process you will need a whole year's rent in the bank with a notarized contract signed by the landlord that will be taken from your account when you get your visa, also 2700 kuna per month for the year plus 500 kuna per month for a spouse, in the bank (you can use this during the year as needed) and on the day you go to apply you will need a letter from the bank (easy to obtain, it just takes a few minutes) with that day's account balance on it and signed by a bank officer."

Can you explain this better? Do you mean the landlord takes out a years worth of rent in one lump?

I don't know if I can explain it better. We opened a bank account after getting our OIB, a number you need to do business in Croatia and open bank accounts. We put 2700 kunas x 12, plus 500 kunas x 12 into our bank account. This money you are allowed to use during the year but for the government this is how much you need in your bank account. That is aside from the rental payments for one year that our landlord took when our rental contract date started. That was two months after we started this process.
And, yes, my landlord took the money all at once. The contract was from our 91st day in the country until the 12 months were up. In this case it was from July 6th, 2016 to July 6th 2017.
The day you submit all your paperwork to the government at the police station, you will need a letter from an official person from your bank with your bank balance of THAT day signed and dated to submit with your application.
I hope this helps clear it up for you.
They do the same thing in China - a full year's rent - only there is no bank involved usually. Cash only.
Also, it might be in the rental contract that there is no money returned if you decide to leave instead of remain in Croatia.
I feel fortunate to have landlords that I trust.

Hello Angela,

My husband and I left the SF Bay Area in mid-July and have "split" our time between Sarajevo, where he is from, and the Makarska Riviera.

We've had the pleasure visiting the Makarska MUP once and the Split MUP twice to start our temporary residency process.

To concur with Kate we need to first find a 12-month rental and secure Croatian health insurance. So far there was a lovely lady at the national health care office, Marijana, who speaks English and was incredibly helpful. (We need to pay for the previous 12-months and then start our monthly health insurance which is about $70 US per person.)

Otherwise, rental agencies don't bother to answer emails about properties and a woman at MUP told me she'll give me the forms to fill out WITHOUT my hubby (fair enough--my Croatian needs to improve!)

So, I'm treating this adventure as a Spartan Race--some obstacles, a little pain, but satisfying once crossing the finish-line.

Feel free to reach out/PM if you have any questions. We are Split-bound around the third week of October and looking for our 12-rental.

Good luck!

@Kate - your place sounds fantastic!! Does your landlady still rent via AirBnB?

Hi. Yes, she does. They have a place below us that is the same size as our place with a little different configuration and then a smaller place in the basement which is half below ground, if you know what I mean.
I don't understand the 12 months previous, did they explain that to you?
We started getting travel medical insurance since May, so I am wondering how this will go. We just got our visas on October 6th that technically started July 6th. I'll be curious to see what happens when we get our actually card in 3 weeks. No one has mentioned anything about the insurance issue yet.
The price we had to pay for the visa, at the time of getting our cards and giving them photos and our finger prints to put on the card we'll get in 3 weeks, was 240 plus 500 kunas each. It was well over $3000 US in Cuenca, Ecuador so we are feeling so fortunate here...
If you want to email me re: our landlady's info so AirBnB can be gotten around, feel free. ladnerkate[at]

I will contact the email address you provided :-) Hvala!

Here's how Marijana explained the health insurance:

If we apply for HR insurance on Nov. 1, 2016 we will need to pay for the previous 12 months--November 1, 2015 to October 31, 2016. On November 1, 2016 our Croatian insurance kicks in and continues monthly. For an extra $15-20 USD we can upgrade our insurance to include hospitalization.

I hope that makes sense :-)

Nope, doesn't make sense at all. Why pay for insurance when you're not here? I can see paying for it if you travel from here, but you're living here. It seems like a bit of a scam to me. I know in Canada where insurance is automatic upon arrival, you have to apply for it and even if you don't it will be back charged to your date of entry. This doesn't sound like the same thing at all.
Like Gilda Radner said, "It's always something!"

There's a thread on Chasing the Donkey from last March about paying retroactively. It seems odd to me, too.

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