How to register property?

Video instructions for citizens and companies


The new Law on Real Estate and Utilities Cadastre Registration Procedure has introduced one-stop shop, electronic system for property registration via public notaries - eCounter. As of July 1, 2018, citizens and businesses purchasing or inheriting property no longer have direct contact with the Republic Geodetic Authority (RGA), the Tax Office and the local tax administration. All activities related to obtaining property folio, sales contract notarization and tax return filing are now doable in one place - at the public notary office, in charge of conducting subject activities electronically together with other authorities in charge.


Registration Procedure via eCounter

Select a public notary (click  here) and schedule an appointment by location of the subject property. If a public notary has not been appointed for the subject area, the local basic court shall be in charge of notarization.


Before the cadastre registration procedure has begun - prepare the following documents:


  • Identification documents (ID card or passport) of the buyer, seller and other participants of the legal transaction
  • Note:  If a property is being bought or sold through a proxy, a power of attorney notarized by a public notary should be prepared in advance
  • Draft real estate sales contract
  • Completed property tax and absolute rights transfer tax forms (available here)
  • Documents proving the legal continuity of ownership of real estate, such as previous sales contracts, inheritance decisions and similar, if the seller has not been registered as the owner in the real estate cadastre
  • Sometimes, additional documentation will be required, something you can advise on with the public notary who will advise you on your particular case
  • Note:  To accelerate the notarization process, it is recommended that you submit all necessary documents to the public notary in electronic form before arriving to previously scheduled notarization

Visiting a Public Notary and Cadastre Registration

  • You are going to the public notary office for the sales contract notarization and real estate cadastre registration, all in one place. Both the buyer and seller (or their proxies) must attend the contract notarization. Bring the authentic required documents for this occasion, except for the subject contract, which is usually printed at the public notary office (naturally, if you have sent it electronically in advance to the public notary)
  • Note: If the seller is married, presence of the spouse is required, or the spouse's notarized sale consent
  • Note:  If the buyer is married and the subject property is acquired as a separate property, the presence of the spouse or a spouse's notarized statement indicating that it is a separate property is required. Otherwise, the property shall be registered in the cadastre both in the name of the buyer and his/her spouse as their marital property
  • With a notarized contract, you will than go to the bank to pay the purchase price. The seller is now assured that he/she has received the money, so he can go back to the public notary office for notarization of his/her consent for the buyer to be registered as the owner in the real estate cadastre. Thereafter, the whole procedure is taken over by the public notary in communication with the cadastre and other authorities in charge
  • Note: If the property is to be purchased with a loan, by default, banks require that a real estate mortgage - collateral for the loan - is registered before the loan has been disbursed. In this case, the loan approval procedure by the bank and mortgage statement notarization precedes the procedure of the contract notarization by the public notary

Decision, Fees and Taxes

  • The Cadastre Service shall issue the Cadastre Registration Decision within five working days and deliver subject decision to the home addresses of all persons involved in the registration. The Cadastre Registration Decision and tax bills shall also indicate the amounts of fees or taxes, as well as the due payment dates
  • The buyer shall be the payer of the registration fee and property tax, and the seller shall pay the absolute rights transfer taxes - however, the buyer can assume this obligation if this is provided in the contract
  • Note: If a property is being bought from a developer, the buyer shall pay VAT instead of the absolute rights transfer tax. The buyer shall be entitled to VAT exemption and/or reduction if he/she is buying his/her first property

New Cadastre Registration System Advantages:

The goal of the Cadastre reform is to make the registration process easier, faster and more secure, and to create accurate and complete real estate records in Serbia. Key novelties and benefits for citizens and businesses are as follows:

  • The number of procedures and visits to various counters in cases of property purchase or inheritance has been reduced from six to only one visit to a public notary. The public notary reviews the correctness of documents and the registrability in the cadastre (previously done by the Cadastre Service)
  • Application processing time has been shortened four or five times - takes five days on average
  • Citizens are no longer obliged to obtain property folios and other excerpts from public records, because the public notary shall access all required information ex officio, electronically and with no fees
  • Property acquired during marriage shall be registered as marital property, unless otherwise agreed by the spouses
  • Cadastre registration of buildings under construction is now allowed to protect the property rights of buyers of apartments under construction from unconscientiouos developers
  • Filling of the property tax and absolute rights transfer tax via the public notary is now possible

For more information, please see the Real Estate Cadastre Registration Guide