How to get a square meter in Budva for 783 euros



  • In the part of Budva where the square meter of residential space ranges from 1,500 to 2,500 euros, the Chairman of the Assembly of the Municipality of Budva, Nikola Jovanović, paid only 783 euros/m2. The documentation about this deal obtained by the MANS Investigative Centre shows that Jovanović paid around 85 thousand euros for the 109 m2-apartment and a parking space, while the appraisal of its market value commissioned by Jovanović himself shows that it is worth 143 thousand euros.
  • Jovanović paid for the apartment with the help of a loan of 70,000 euros, while the rest of around 15,000 euros was provided from income that was not reported to the Agency for Prevention of Corruption (APC).

Authors: Dejan Milovac, Lazar Grdinić

Mid-last year, the Chairman of the Assembly of the Municipality of Budva, Nikola Jovanović, became the owner of a three-room apartment of 109 m2 located in the Budva settlement Lazi. According to the purchase agreement obtained by the MANS Investigative Centre, Jovanović paid 85,350 euros for the apartment, i.e. 783 euros per square meter. The apartment was bought with the help of a housing loan of 70,000 euros, while the rest was paid directly to the seller, a Russian citizen Ismagilov Rashit.

Photo: MANS

Analyzing this deal, MANS Investigative Centre obtained information that the value of the apartment that Jovanović acquired and mortgaged was estimated at a significantly higher amount, at 143,000 euros.

How the price of the apartment was “knocked down”

According to available data from real estate agencies, the average price of an apartment in Budva settlement Lazi ranges from 1,500 to 2,500 euros per square meter, which is several times higher than paid by the Chairman of the Assembly of the Municipality of Budva for the acquired property.

Asked to comment on the low price at which he bought the apartment and the nature of the relationship with the seller of the apartment, Jovanović said that he did not know Rashit before concluding the purchase agreement, and that he negotiated the price of the apartment with his attorney. Regarding the price of the apartment, Jovanović claims that it was influenced by several factors that ultimately led to it being lower than the market price.

Nikola Jovanović told the MANS Investigative Centre that the apartment is located in the immediate vicinity of the cemetery, that the apartment could not have been sold for a long time, and that the property itself had numerous construction defects, which caused its price to be lowered.

“The apartment had problems with dampness for many years, which is why it was necessary to insulate the terrace, as well as replace the floors in the dining room and living room and perform other construction works”, Jovanović told MANS.

However, the data from the appraisal obtained by MANS do not recognize the shortcomings referred to by Jovanović.

“The apartment is in excellent condition, well maintained, there are no visible defects. Residential space is oriented towards the south-east, with a sea view… Each apartment has one parking space,” the property appraisal report states, done in June 2022, just before Jovanović bought the apartment.


Excerpt from the Real Estate Valuation Report Photo: MANS

Asked what were the costs of the reconstruction of the apartment, Jovanović said that he did not know the exact amount because he did most of the works himself.

The appraisal was ordered by Jovanović, and now he doesn’t know how much the apartment is worth

When asked about the appraisal of the value of the apartment, Jovanović points out that he does not know the estimated value of his apartment, how the appraisal was done, and that he does not have the appraisal because the bank ordered it as a means of security – a mortgage for granting loans.

However, in the appraisal report obtained by MANS, it is explicitly stated that at the end of June 2022, “at the request of Mr. Nikola Jovanović, an appraisal report of the value of the real estate was carried out in order to determine the market value for the purposes of the loan… The market value of the real estate, according to the data presented in the report, on the day of the appraisal, amounts to 143,000 euros.” 

Excerpt from Real Estate Valuation Report Photo Photo: MANS

Unreported current account savings

In addition to the loan, Jovanović claims that he provided a part of the funds for the purchase of the apartment under the described conditions from his own savings. The Chairman of the Assembly of the Municipality of Budva paid the amount of the difference between the purchase price of 85,5350 euros and the obtained loan of 70 thousand euros from his bank account.

Jovanović paid the seller the amount of 15,350 euros at the beginning of August last year. Asked for the origin of that money, Jovanović said it were funds that came from his regular monthly earnings.

Data on his monthly earnings show that Jovanović could not have provided this amount of salary even in case his five-member family had no living expenses from January to August last year.

If it is a year-long savings, however, it should have been reported until March last year within a regular income and property statement submitted to the Agency for Prevention of Corruption (APC). However, data from the APC’s website show that Jovanović submitted a regular statement on 29 March 2022, and then two more extraordinary statements in August of the same year when he was appointed the acting Manager of the Municipality of Budva. None of these statements contained data on any savings.

Asked by the Investigative Centre if he has any other earnings in addition to the official salary, and whether there are any other savings, Jovanović said that in addition to salary in the municipality, he had no other income, and denied other accounts or term savings. The data from the APC’s site show that Jovanović did not give consent for access to data on the accounts of banking and other financial institutions.

Late last year, MANS forwarded all presented data the Agency for Prevention of Corruption, but for now, there is no information that this institution has done anything in this case.

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