Belgrade is an ancient city with a rich history of strategic importance to some of the most imposing empires to ever grace Europe. The Roman, Ottoman, Byzantine, Serbian, and Austrian empires have all made their mark on the city, one of the oldest on the planet. There is evidence of prehistorical settlements dating back to anywhere from 20,000 to 50,000 years ago, making Belgrade seriously ancient.
Relocating overseas is not easy, but doing your research beforehand can help make the moving process a little bit easier. Using the services of an overseas moving company can ensure that your belongings arrive at your new Belgrade apartment intact. If you’re looking for an apartment to buy or rent in Belgrade, Serbia, here’s what you need to know about moving to The White City.
Belgrade is the City of Two Halves
The city of Belgrade is divided into two distinct geographical areas thanks to the river Sava, which is what attracted prehistorical settlers to the area some thousands of years ago. Old Belgrade, thought to originate sometime around the 2nd century B.C., lies to the east of the river. This part of town is considered the soul of the city. When you cross over the river to the west side of Belgrade, you’ll find New Belgrade, developed in the 1950s. Here, you’ll find wide boulevards, shopping, and cycling lanes.
If you have never stayed in Belgrade before, it’s a good idea to stay in the city for at least a weekend so you can get a feel for the city and learn how daily life happens here. This will also give you a bit of an idea of where to start looking for an apartment to rent or buy in Belgrade. Overall, the city has a relaxed and cheerful atmosphere that makes this place easy to call home and feel welcomed.
Both New and Old Belgrade have an ample supply of apartments to offer, and choosing one half of the city to live in versus the other will come down to your personal preferences and lifestyle needs. But it’s critical for foreign residents to understand that most of the apartments for rent or sale are located in the central areas of Belgrade. If you would prefer a slower, quieter pace of life, you’ll want to look for a house situated in the surrounding suburbs of Belgrade.
Where to Start Looking for An Apartment in Belgrade
If you’re looking to buy or rent an apartment here, you’ll probably have a few districts in mind where you’d like to live. There are a few ways you can find an apartment in Belgrade. The locals will usually look for rentals through the local newspapers, social media, or through word-of-mouth. If you do not speak Serbian, this can be a problem for you. But there are a lot of English-speaking real estate agents in Serbia with user-friendly websites you can navigate to find photos and locations of some apartments you may like.
Many sites will be written in English. In Belgrade, the websites that specialize in real estate are called “nekretnine.” Nekretnine is Serbian for real estate. So, if you go into the Google search bar and type “nekretnine Belgrade,” you’ll find real estate websites that feature ads with properties listed for sale or rent in the city. You’ll probably have to use the translate option on your browser for some of these websites, although a fair amount will display listings in English.
The Best Time to Look
July and August are some of the most competitive months to start looking for an apartment to rent or buy in Belgrade. During these months, students from the smaller towns and villages around Serbia are beginning to move into the city for university. There will be a lot of competition for the best apartments in Belgrade during these summer months, so it’s a good idea to get in touch with the owners of the places you’d like to view immediately if you’re looking during July or August.
Location, Age, and Price
Anything located in Stari Grad, the central part of the city, will come with the highest price tags. Apartments in a district like Zemun, or any of the neighboring suburbs like Karaburma, or even New Belgrade can be had for almost half the price of something located in Stari Grad. These less expensive locations are only about 5 to 10 minutes from Stari Grad if you’re driving at off-peak hours.
Older buildings are also less costly than newer construction. Apartments that aren’t renovated are also cheaper, and apartments that come furnished with outdated furniture will be less expensive than places that feature more modern options. Don’t be surprised to find yourself viewing some apartments that look like they were frozen in time decades ago.
Working with an Agent
In Serbian, an agency is called “agencija.” You will probably come across ads while searching for an apartment in Serbia that is listed as “vlasnik.” This means that the ad was listed by the owner of the apartment or house on a nekretnine website. Contacting an English-speaking real estate agent in Serbia can make finding a suitable apartment for you to rent or buy much less daunting, especially if you will be moving from overseas.
Many of the real estate agents in Belgrade with websites listed in English will specialize in serving first-time foreigners with finding a property in Belgrade. A real estate agent will be able to translate the different features on a listing, and what type of vibe a neighborhood has that may or may not be a good fit for you. The agent will also make time to go with you on viewings and can help you negotiate on the price of an apartment with the owner or landlord or lady. Finding an apartment to rent or buy in Belgrade, Serbia is an exciting prospect. Keep these pointers in mind while searching for a new place to call home in Serbia.