What You Need To Know About Golden Visa Programs
Golden Visa programs enable investors to get residency and citizenship rights overseas. You can get a Golden Visa by investing in certain countries. Investment types vary depending on each country. The common options include real estate investment, donation, and direct contribution to governments.
High-net-worth individuals prefer a Golden Visa, especially because of its low stay requirement. The programs also offer visa-free travel in Schengen countries and in others, on certain conditions.
It is also possible to include your dependent family members in these investment visa programs. They can also get residence permits and citizenship just like you. Families with children also benefit from the education opportunities in these countries.
You can find more details about the Golden Visa below.
What Is a Golden Visa?
A Golden Visa program provides residency for investors and their families in a foreign country. It is also known as an investor visa. Nationals who are not from the EU, EEA (European Economic Area), or Switzerland can benefit from this. In return for their investment, investors obtain EU residence permits. You can also get EU citizenship after a required period of time.
The minimum required investment amounts vary depending on each country. However, most of them offer a Golden Visa through real estate investment and capital transfer. Donation to certain organizations is another common option among Golden Visas programs. Recently, the fund investment option has gained popularity as well.
Mostly, Golden Visas programs allow you to include your immediate family members. Some of them offer an extended inclusion of members. This means that they allow you to include grandparents and parents-in-law as well.
Benefits of Getting a Golden Visa
- Golden Visas don’t require you to move to your Golden Visa country. So, you can still maintain your old lifestyle and hold a second residency;
- Countries like Greece and Malta don’t even entail any stay requirement. Some others require a very low stay requirement to keep your residence permit;
- You can establish a business in your Golden Visa country and get a residence permit. This benefits business people who intend to expand their businesses;
- Some countries offer citizenship at the end of a certain period. Countries like Portugal require five years to grant citizenship. In some countries, the minimum period is 10 years residency for citizenship;
- You can have visa-free access to Schengen countries when you get your Golden Visa;
- When you get EU citizenship, you can live, work and study in any EU country.
How To Get a Golden Visa
You first need to choose an investment option. Each option has its own minimum investment requirement. You’ll decide on one of them based on your benefits and budget.
Buying real estate is the most popular option for getting an investor’s visa. Some Golden Visa programs offer fund investment, donation, and job creation as well. The option of capital transfer has also gained attention recently.
When you choose your option, you’ll start the application process. The waiting period for approval varies depending on each country. However, the process takes between two to nine months.
You can consult a professional before you make an investment, just to be on the safe side.
What Are the Requirements of Golden Visa?
You can find the most common requirements from the Golden Visa countries below:
- You need to have a clean criminal record,
- You need to keep your investment for a certain period of time,
- You need to indicate that you’ve earned your funds legally,
- You need to prove that you’ll invest through your own funds,
- You may need to demonstrate a certain amount of net worth, excluding the investment amount.
List of the Golden Visa Countries
Many European countries offer Golden Visa schemes for high-net-worth investors. They offer you access to the European market as well as a quality lifestyle and services.
You can find the list of Golden Visa countries from Europe;
Portugal Golden Visa
Portugal is a very popular Golden Visa country among investors. More than 9,800 investors have obtained Portuguese residency since 2012. The country attracts people because of its stability in economics and political climate as well as safety. It’s one of the greatest options for an investor’s visa to live in Europe.
Portugal mainly offers the following investment options:
- Real Estate Investment: If you purchase a property worth at least €500,000, you may be eligible for a Golden Visa Portugal. Depending on the property’s condition, the amount can drop to €400,000, €350,000 or €280,000;
- Investment Fund: When you invest in a qualifying fund, you can obtain your Golden Visa. The minimum required investment amount is €350,000. As of 2022, the amount will increase to €500,000;
- Capital Transfer: The minimum amount of capital transfer is €1 million to Portugal. As of 2022, it will be €1,5 million;
- Job Creation: This is another option to get Portuguese residency. You can establish a business or invest in an existing business. The requirement is that your business needs to create job opportunities in Portugal;
- Donation: You can invest a minimum of €350,000 in an R&D (Research and Development) activity in Portugal. As of 2022, it’ll go up to €500,000. Another option is to donate a minimum of €250,000 in preserving national heritage in Portugal.
Portugal Golden Visa offers visa-free travel within the Schengen area. When you obtain citizenship, you’ll have visa-free access to 188 countries. You can also live, work and study in any EU country.
Portugal’s Golden Visa program entails an average of seven-day stay requirement per year. At the end of five years, you may be eligible to apply for citizenship as well.
Greece Golden Visa
Greece offers the lowest threshold among investments for EU residency. Furthermore, there is no stay requirement at all. You can also apply remotely for a Greek Golden Visa.
You can find the investment options Greece Golden Visa offers below:
- Real Estate Investment: You can buy a property worth at least €250,000 in Greece;
- Capital Transfer: You can invest €400,000 in investment for bonds or shares of real estate investment companies in Greece.
Malta Permanent Residence Program
Investors and families favor Malta’s program thanks to its location, stability in politics, and economy. Once approved, you’ll get a residence permit of five years. Malta’s program also does not entail any stay requirement at all.
You have two options for real estate investment under this program: buying or leasing.
- Real Estate Acquisition: You can buy a residential property for €350,000 in Malta. If the property is in the South of Malta and Gozo, it drops to €300,000
- Property Leasing: You can rent a residential property in Malta for €12,000 per year. The lease agreement must be made for at least five years. If the property is in the South of Malta and Gozo, the amount drops to €10,000
In addition to the investment, you also need to pay additional contributions, donations, and fees. You can find these required fees below:
- €40,000 for an administrative fee, and
- €28,000 for government contribution in case of property acquisition
- €58,000 for government contribution in case of property lease
- €2,000 for donation to a local philanthropic organization.
Spain Golden Visa
Like the other countries above, Spain also offers a quality lifestyle and business opportunities for investors and families. The program does not require any stay requirement. Furthermore, you’ll have visa-free access to the Schengen area.
Spain offers the following investment options:
- Real Estate Investment: You can buy a property worth at least €500,000
- Fund Investment: You can invest €1 million in investment funds.
Other options include job creation, investment in Spanish public debt, or bank deposits.
Golden Visa has provided residence rights to thousands of investors worldwide. You can choose the best one based on your needs, and get those privileges along with your family.