What is the Golden Visa
A number of European countries, including Portugal, have for several years been issuing residence permits to foreign nationals in exchange for domestic real estate or economic investments and the creation of new jobs. Each country and golden visa has its own conditions and thresholds of necessary investments. What are the main advantages of these programs and why have they become so popular?
The fact is that obtaining a residence permit gives wealthy people the opportunity to expand their business and give it new opportunities for development. The second aspect that makes the golden visa in Portugal or elsewhere so popular is that an increasing number of wealthy people want to invest in the purchase of real estate in Lisbon or elsewhere in Europe. The popularity of this type of investment continues to grow as it guarantees the preservation of their investment, obtaining a home for a holiday in Europe and in addition to receiving a stable income from its rental for the rest of the year.
In recent years, some countries have been very active in issuing golden visas such as Latvia, Spain, Greece, Malta and Cyprus, but one of the most popular countries for obtaining a residence permit quickly in Europe through large investments is Portugal.
Fill the form below and be put in direct contact with a English speaking tax lawyer based near Lisbon. You will be able to discuss with him about obtaining a Golden Visa, VISAS er Portuguese nationality.
Please note before to contact that this firm is highly reputable, competent and offers high quality services of VISAS / Golden Visa from 3500€.
How to get the Golden Visa in Portugal
To begin the process of obtaining a residence permit in Portugal, you must :
- Provide scanned copies of the passports of all applicants
- Meet the program’s investment requirements: buy a property, invest in a business or create 10 jobs.
- Obtain a Portuguese TIN (for investment purposes) and open a bank account in Portugal with one of the local banks.
- Provide lawyers with the original documents for legalization and validation at the notary’s office (after prior verification of your data)
Then the investor will have to travel to Portugal to present documents, biometric data and pay a fee for their analysis. The examination of the investor’s documents in Portugal and the security checks usually take 6 months.
Criteria for obtaining the Portuguese Golden Visa
You will find below a list of criteria to be met if you wish to obtain a golden visa in Portugal.
If you wish to be accompanied in your step of real estate purchase in Portugal to obtain a Golden Via, contact me via the contact form and I will put you in touch with the real estate agencies of references in Portugal: professional and serious Anglo-Portuguese real estate agents who will be pleased to scan the whole market to find the property of your dreams and to facilitate all the administrative parts to you.
To obtain the golden visa it is necessary :
- Being over 18 years old
- Having entered Portugal with a valid Schengen visa
- Not having been convicted of a serious offence
- Maintain the investment for at least 5 years
- Investing funds from abroad
- Not to be referenced by the Portuguese immigration and Schengen services.
- Reside in Portugal for at least 7 days the first year and 14 days the following 2 years.
- Have a stable and regular income to support yourself and your family.
- No criminal record
- No debts to the tax authorities and other Portuguese authorities
- Have a tax identification number for investment purposes
The principal applicant may include his/her spouse, children under 18 years of age and unmarried student children who are fully cared for by the principal applicant in the application for a Golden Visa in Portugal.
It is also possible to include children over 18 years of age with a physical or mental disability, their parents or their spouse who are fully funded by the applicant.
Costs of obtaining the Golden Visa
Buying a mansion or villa on the coast in Portugal is the most common way to invest in the Portuguese economy. To obtain the Golden Visa, the amount of the investment depends on the type of investment. It will also be necessary to foresee the different application fees for the application and the issuance of the Portuguese golden visa for the main applicant and additional persons.
Golden Visa application and renewal
You will find below the various fees associated with the application and its renewal. These costs are for 2018, so there may be slight variations.
- Application fee: €527.60 for the main applicant and €82.30 per additional applicant
- Fee for issuing the Golden Visa: €5,274.40 per person for the initial visa and €2,637.20 per person for each renewal.
- Application fees for permanent residence (after 5 years) and citizenship (after 6 years): a few hundred euros per applicant
- Free for children under 18 years old
If you do not speak the language, you will also need to plan for fees for any professional services you require. It is best to be accompanied throughout by the same English-speaking person. This will allow you to centralize all the information and to be accompanied correctly: contact me if you are looking for someone you trust to do so.
- Professional assistance throughout the process of obtaining your Golden visa
- Translation and legislation of documents
- Fiscal Representation
- Preparation and archiving of IRS declarations annually
- Professional assistance for the purchase of real estate or its renting out
- Professional assistance for the creation and management of a company (English-speaking accountant)
Real estate investment in Portugal
There are two types of real estate investments in Portugal that can allow you to obtain a golden visa at two different costs:
- Acquisition of a property worth half a million euros
- Acquisition of a property that was built more than 30 years ago and is located in an urban renewal area. These properties are harder to find and rarely attractive to investors but lower the investment cost for the Portuguese Golden Visa to 350 000 €.
In addition to purchasing real estate, there is also a variant of direct investment in the country’s economy. You can buy stocks or bonds for a variable amount depending on the type of investment:
- If the transfer does not involve one of the items below, it must be more than 1,000,000 €.
- Artistic or cultural activities: transfer over €250,000
- Research activity: transfer of more than €350,000
- Acquisition of investment funds or venture capital funds: transfer exceeding €350,000
- Purchase of a company in Portugal + creation of 5 jobs: transfer of more than €350,000
It is also possible to set up a company in Portugal and create at least 10 jobs to obtain the Golden Visa.
New Golden Visa Start-Up
In force since 1 January 2018, this visa can be obtained :
- By proving that your start up can reach a value of 325 000 € within 3 years.
- By proving an annual income of €500,000
Portuguese Golden Visa: what are the advantages?
First of all, obtaining a Portuguese residence permit gives its owner the freedom to move around Europe. It is possible for the holder of the golden visa in Portugal to enter all Schengen countries, thus avoiding many of the problems, organizational efforts and financial costs associated with obtaining visas from the embassies of the European Union.
Another advantage of this golden visa is that the owner can, if he or she wishes, stay in the country only 7 days a year for the first year (14 days for the following two years), which will be enough to meet the requirements of the program. At the same time, the visa holder can stay and reside in the country permanently, this will not prevent him/her from being able to work in Portugal.
The golden visa in Portugal can be very interesting for businessmen and investors who have decided to choose this country as their main residence. The residence permit is issued for a period of one year, followed by its renewal for 2 years.
An investor who meets the requirements of the program can obtain permanent residence in Portugal within 5 years after receiving his Golden Visa and citizenship the following year. All members of the investor’s family may receive a residence permit within 6-8 months after receiving the Portuguese Golden Visa.
Golden Visa in Portugal: statistics
Statistics published by the Portuguese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Directorate General of Consular Services and Communities, indicate that 6,369 residence permits have been issued since the establishment of the Portuguese Golden Visa Programme between 2012 and 2018. When counting the family members of Portuguese Golden visa principal applicants, the figure rises to 10,793.
The number of applicants has been increasing since 2012 but has decreased between 2017 and 2018:
- 816 golden visa applications in Portugal in 2018
- 1351 Golden Visa applications in Portugal in 2017
You will find below the main nationalities who apply for the Portuguese Golden Visa :
- 3,890 applications for Chinese nationality
- 561 applications for Brazilian citizenship
- 254 requests from South Africa
- 224 applications from Turkey
- 222 requests from Russia
Overall, the Portuguese Golden Visa programme has so far generated investments of EUR 4.35 billion, of which 91% was for the acquisition of real estate, and the average investment was EUR 610 000.
Real estate market in Portugal
It is important to be aware that property sales in Portugal have increased enormously, as have prices. You will find everything you need to know about the real estate market in Portugal in 2019 by following the following link. A strong growth that boosts transactions and is largely due to the activity of foreign investors holding Golden Visas in Portugal.
Lisbon and its suburbs remains the most expensive city in the country (10K€ / m² in Liberdade Avenue and 5K€ / m² in Parque des Nations), with prices rising by 10% in 2018. The surrounding towns along the Tagus river such as Cascais are also very expensive and it is now very difficult to find interesting properties for €500,000 in this area.
At the same time, prices in the north of the country are much lower and will be around €1800 per m² in 2018, which is +22% compared to 2017. Real estate prices in the high-end districts of Porto are estimated in 2018 at between €4500 and €6000 per m² in the historic centre.
There is a strong demand from expatriates for real estate in the Algarve. The growing demand for Portuguese real estate is contributing to the attention of international celebrities. This summer, numerous media around the world reported that an old mansion in Portugal was bought by American pop star Madonna. The house near Lisbon cost nearly $6.4 million.
In the country, there is a boom in investment not only in housing but also in commercial real estate. Analysts predict a large number of new office buildings and a sharp rise in commercial investments.