Portugal has proved to be the most popular destination in Europe for investors seeking a golden visa. Full residency is granted but there is no requirement to reside. Citizenship can be applied for after six years.
The Portuguese golden visa is a central feature of the government’s drive for international investment. With the country returning to growth the real estate market offers exciting prospects for the years ahead.
Cyprus offers citizenship for investment levels of €2.5 million in real estate which is one of the big attractions of this programme. A Cypriot passport allows freedom to travel, study, work or live throughout the European Union.
Cyprus also offers residency through investment of just €300,000 allowing full family qualification. The investor visa is flexible with no requirement to live in the country.
Spain is a firm favourite for many clients considering real estate investment to obtain a golden visa. One of the larger economies in Europe offering an investor visa programme.
Invest from €500,000 in real estate to gain the Spanish golden visa. This provides a flexible residency option. Permanent residency and citizenship can be applied for at a later stage subject to certain stipulations.
Greece offers a residency visa through property investment but eventual citizenship is not available to foreigners. Greece is a member of the EU Schengen visa zone and has no minimum stay requirement.
Prospective investors need to carefully consider the status of the economy in Greece, the real estate market and related property taxes. Greece offers a higher risk investment than other European nations.
Malta offers an Individual Investor Program which is appropriate for our very high net worth clients. In addition to committing to a residence in Malta for five years the scheme requires investment in government approved funds and instruments.
The Malta visa scheme leads to citizenship within one year for suitable applicants, a passport from an EU country and hence the freedom to live anywhere within the EU. The total investment required is typically in excess of €1.2 million.
The citizenship by investment programme for Grenada is one of the newest programmes available to investors. The Grenada passport offers visa-free travel to over 70 countries including the UK.
Grenada offers a low investment threshold. Applicants need invest just $250,000 in a government approved real estate project and maintain the investment for at least 4 years.
The citizenship by investment programme for Antigua and Barbuda provides a second passport to investors offering visa-free travel to over 100 countries including the UK, EU Schengen zone and Canada.
There are several options for investment to gaining citizenship in Antigua including real estate investment of a minimum $400,000.
The St. Kitts & Nevis Citizenship by Investment Program is the oldest of its kind in the world. Established in 1984 the program grants citizenship through real estate investment to qualified applicants.
The government requires investment of $400,000 plus related government and due diligence fees. St Kitts offer visa free travel to over 120 countries. An ideal choice for a second passport.
The Portugal Golden Visa program has proven to be the most popular scheme in Europe with investors attracted to its flexibility and benefits. Launched in 2012 the investor visa program has been actively promoted internationally by the Portuguese government. An investment of €500,000 in real estate in Portugal will gain a residency permit for a family including dependent children. The golden visa can be renewed every two years providing the applicant spends two weeks in the country every two years.
One of the most attractive options is the ability to apply for permanent residency after 5 years and citizenship after 6 years without the need to reside in Portugal. In fact, the applicant and their family need only visit for two weeks every two years in order to renew the Portuguese Golden Visa. In Portugal citizenship can be granted without the applicant having resided in the country. However the investor having acquired residency through the golden visa programme will need to demonstrate ties to the country and pass a basic language test. Citizenship of Portugal and a second passport conveys the right to live, work and study anywhere in the European Union. The Portuguese residency card granted through the golden visa programme allows the holder to travel throughout the EU Schengen zone.
- Investment of €500,000
- Full family residency
- Flexible. No requirement to reside
- Permanent Residency from 5 years
- Citizenship from 6 years
- EU Schengen visa travel
The property market in Portugal like many southern European countries suffered with the credit crisis and prices in 2015 are typically 20% – 30% below their peak. However there is a clear turn in the market and property above the €500,000 investment visa limit is seeing huge demand particularly in the capital, Lisbon. Investors buying into the real estate market in Portugal for the Golden Visa now have excellent prospects for capital gain in the coming years. Advice is recommended for serious buyers as there are clear distinctions between typical vacation homes on the coast in Portugal and city properties such as Lisbon. In particular with regard to market demand for property types and on-going rental or lifestyle options for the investor. Enquire here. Investors may wish to check further details on the Portugal golden visa program or see our outline procedure for applications.
Portugal is not the only country in Europe offering a golden visa program leading to a residence permit through real estate investment. Visit our pages on Spain and Greece to compare the immigration investment requirements and benefits of their golden visa residency programs and also the citizenship by investment programs in Cyprus and Malta.
It is critical to gain the right advice from the start to avoid costly mistakes. Every visa scheme is different and in our experience every client situation is different too. Your needs, objectives and your family profile. Contact us to ensure your choice is the right one. Our advice is free for clients buying property through us.
Liaise with one of our property visa consultants for full details on the golden visa programmes. You can contact us by phone, email, our contact form or live chat on our website.
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