Legal Insights with Klein Law: Georgia for Digital Nomads – Ease of Renting a Flat and Opening a Bank Account

From the expert perspectives of Givi Pantsulaia and Daniel Klein, we delve deep into the simplicity of renting a flat in Georgia this week.

Recent columns have highlighted the attractively low tax rates for immigrants in Georgia, making it a lucrative spot for entrepreneurs (Refer to: Legal Insights with Klein Law: 1% Tax Rates for Entrepreneurs and Other Georgian Attractive Tax Rates). The lenient regulations for migrants, allowing them a year-long stay without visa requirements, further accentuate Georgia’s appeal (See: Legal Insights with Klein Law: Renew Georgian Visa with 1-day Departure; Re-Enter for another 365 Days). Such advantages make Georgia a budget-friendly choice for apartment rentals, with the leasing process being notably straightforward.

One Month Security Deposit & A Tenant-Friendly Market
Tbilisi, Georgia’s bustling capital, beckons expatriates and entrepreneurs with its mix of low-tax benefits, minimal regulations, and a captivating cultural heritage. If you’re contemplating a move to Tbilisi and are exploring rental costs, this segment offers essential insights into the city’s rental market and its tenant-centric policies.

Numerous excellent flats are available for rent at approximately $600 monthly. A significant advantage for tenants in Tbilisi is the mandate of only a month’s deposit for renting, excluding any realtor fees. This reduced initial expenditure, in contrast to other global cities that might demand added charges, is undeniably beneficial. Landlords typically don’t perform background checks on potential renters due to a lack of credit rating agencies. Even so, they only ask for a month’s security deposit. In contrast, in mature markets like the US, landlords might require up to 6 months (or more) as a security deposit, especially for tenants without a local renting history.

Mr. Pantsulaia highlights, “Evicting non-paying tenants is not straightforward. The landlord would need to initiate a court action, potentially spanning years. Tbilisi tenants benefit from pro-tenant laws, although this can sometimes pose challenges for landlords.” Police intervention isn’t an option for property owners. While it’s advantageous for tenants, it can be cumbersome for landlords.

For those considering renting in Georgia, ensure the contract is bilingual — in Georgian and a language you’re comfortable with. Always verify the translation, as the Georgian version will be upheld in disputes. Before committing, consult the government real estate registry to confirm the landlord’s ownership, and keep a copy of the landlord’s original passport.

Opening a Georgian Bank Account
Consistent with Georgia’s streamlined procedures for establishing businesses (Refer to: Legal Insights with Klein Law: The Ease of Setting Up a Company in Georgia), opening a bank account is quick, straightforward, and free of charge.

Compared to Yerevan
For Russians, Yerevan emerges as a favored destination, given that they don’t need a passport (just a National ID) for extended stays. However, others are restricted to 180 cumulative days annually without a proper visa. Although rents in Yerevan might be marginally higher than in Tbilisi, the apartment rental processes, including deposit mandates and eviction rules, are similar. Considering the visa provisions, Tbilisi appears more appealing to Westerners.

In Conclusion

Georgia stands out as an enticing relocation destination, offering value for money and minimal complications related to flat rentals, visa regulations, business establishment, and banking.