Golden Visa Scheme
Established in 2012, the Portuguese Golden Visa scheme, has proven to be one of the most successful in-demand residency by investment programs in the world having reportedly generated over 5 billion euros of investment into Portugal.
However, the rules of the current scheme have changed effective of the 1st January 2022. Several of the most popular areas, such as Lisbon and Porto and many of the costal areas of the Algarve are no longer applicable.
This is in part due to the demand for properties outstripping the supply and concerns by the government on being able to provide affordable housing to the local population. So instead investments will be channelled into the interior and lower-density areas of Portugal.
Nonetheless, there are still some ways in which to qualify under the new golden visa scheme in other areas, so read on.
What is Portugal’s Golden Visa?
After the financial crisis of 2008, countries like Portugal needed to seek ways to attract foreign investment to help increase revenues from taxes and reignite its stagnant property market. Hence the Portuguese Golden Visa was created.
The Golden Visa scheme offers permanent residency followed by citizenship after 5 years to those who invest into Portugal. There are several investment routes to be considered, however one of the most popular and risk-free has been through real estate. In other words, purchasing a property in Portugal.
Besides the fact that you get to take advantage of all the wonders that Portugal has to offer, such as its gastronomy, culture, climate and scenery, here are the key points you need to know about the Portuguese golden visa:
- Any one who is a non-EU/EEA/Swiss national can apply for the golden visa scheme
- This now includes British since Brexit
- There are several routes of investment, Real estate is just one of them
- You are only required to spend 7 days in Portugal over the first 2 year period and 14 days across the following 2 year period
- It grants travel and access to the Schengen areas
- After 5 years you can renew the residency or apply for Portuguese citizenship
- You are free to live, work and study in Portugal
- Family reunification is allowed for spouses, de facto partners and dependent children
- Straight forward application process
- Must be over 18 years old, have a clean criminal record and the funds must come from overseas.
- Minimum investment of 350,000€
What are the Requirements?
Real Estate Investment Amount
The general requirement for application of a golden visa is that a purchase of 500,000€ is needed when buying real estate. However, there are several exceptions to this rule.
- If you purchase within a low-density area, there is a 20% reduction offers, meaning you only need to purchase a property at 400,000€.
- If you purchase a real estate that is over 30 years old, within an area classified for urban rehabilitation and renovate it, then the minimum investment is 350,000€. If the renovation property also sits in a low-density area then, the 20% reduction is still applicable, lowing the investment needed to 280,000€.
- From properties purchased under the renovation scheme, then both the purchase and the works completed can be included in the minimum investment needed.
- Multiple applicants can invest together into one or more properties, so long as the value invested equals the minimums needed for each application submitted. i.e Two applicants can invest in a property for 1 million euros and both apply for the golden visa.
Minimum Stay Required in Portugal
Each applicant is required to come to Portugal for a minimum of 7 days within the first 2 year period and spend a further 14 days in Portugal over the course of each of the following 2 year periods.
Golden Visa Renewal Options
After the initial 5 year period has been completed under the golden visa scheme, applicants have three options available to them:
- Renew their residency in Portugal for permanent residency
- Apply for citizenship (language test required)
- Continue to renew a temporary 2 year residency (if you are unable to complete the language test)
* Note that, with gaining citizenship, you are able to sell your investment property. With either residency options you must retain the investment property.
In order to apply for your Golden Visa, the following documents will be required:
- Passport and/or any other government-issued travel documents.
- Evidence of the qualifying investment made by the primary applicant.
- Declaration to confim transfer of funds, issued by a Portuguese Financial Institution.
- Healthcare coverage: if resident then Portugal's national health system number is acceptable, if not then an international policy is required.
- Criminal records from country of resident and country of origin, issued within the last 3 months
- Authorisation form giving the Portuguese Immigration and Border Service (SEF - Serviço de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras) consent to access your criminal record in Portugal.
- Sworn declaration with the minimum investment requirements.
- Non debt certificates issued by the Portuguese Tax Authorities, Customs, and Social Security within 45 days of applications.
- Proof of application payment.
What are the changes from January 2022?
Previously with the golden visa investment at 500,000€ there was no restrictions on where you could purchase the property.
However from 1st January 2022 not all areas of Portugal now quality for the golden visa scheme, meaning you will need to be more selective as to where you are looking to purchase or what is it you are looking to purchase.
In the Algarve, there are now only several areas that allow your property purchase to qualify without any additional restrictions. A full list of qualifying locations can be found here:
- Castrom Parim
- Vila do Bispo
- São Marcos de Serra
If the restricted areas are not suitable to you, the option to purchase a property within a touristic development still apply and can offer you the opportunity to own a turnkey investment property with little day to day involvement.
Or alternatively, buildings classified for services, such as offices and shops are also still applicable if you are looking to hold a commercial investment.
What are the other investment routes available on the Golden Visa Scheme?
Whilst buying a property in Portugal has proven to be the most popular route for obtaining a Portuguese golden visa, there are other routes of investment that can be used. These are:
- Making a capital transfer of at least 1,000,000€.
- Creating at least 10 job positions.
- Making a capital transfer of at least 350,000€ for investment into research activities conducted by private or public scientific research institutions involved in national scientific or technological systems.
- Making a capital transfer of at least 250,000€ for investing in artistic output or supporting the arts, for reconstruction or refurbishment of national the heritage, through the local and central authorities, public institutions, public corporate sector, public foundations, private foundations of public interest, networked local authorities, local corporate sector organisations, local associations and public cultural associations, pursuing activities of artistic output, and reconstruction or maintenance of the national heritage.
- Making a capital transfer of at least 500,000€ for purchasing shares in investment funds or in venture capital geared to capitalising small and medium companies that, in turn, must present a feasible capitalisation plan.
How do I find a property that qualifies for a golden visa?
Private Luxury Collection, has helped numerous clients to find and secure property suitable for the Golden Visa and supported them every step of the way through the application process.
If you are looking to invest into Potrugal’s golden visa scheme, then contact our team of experienced consultants who have the most suitable properties that fit any of the criteria and who have first hand experience of working with the best legal advisors who can undertake all the processes necessary with the authorities on your behalf.
We can be reached any time on +351 915 471 151 or email@example.com
Download our Golden Visa Information pack now