The Spanish Golden Visa Programme
Spain launched its Golden Visa Programme in 2013. An investment of 500,000€ in real estate will gain family residency. The Spanish Investor Visa can be renewed every two years. After five years it is possible to gain permanent residency and after ten years citizenship. It is not necessary to live in Spain in order to retain and renew the residency visa permit.
Permanent Residency and Citizenship.
It is possible to apply for permanent residency in Spain after living in the country for five years. Citizenship can be applied for after living full time for ten years. Although the temporary residency permit (the Golden Visa) can be easily renewed without living in the country, the route to both permanent residency and citizenship requires the investor and their family to reside in Spain. For this reason, the Spanish Golden Visa programme is popular with those applicants who either wish to reside full time in Spain or simply maintain a second residency in Europe but without a path to citizenship.
After several years of price declines real estate the Spanish property market offers considerable potential for capital gains in the coming years. The property, either residential or commercial, can be rented for income. Any number of properties can combine to make up the 500,000€ minimum investment. The property can be mortgaged for any investment exceeding the minimum.
The following is a guide to the application procedure for the golden visa programme in Spain. It is meant as a practical outline for clients using our real estate services and does not serve as a full legal guide. Prior to any application for the applicant and their family for the golden visa there needs to be sufficient investment in real estate. Subject to making the required investment and meeting the programme criteria below, applicants will be granted the residency visa.
We will help plan your visit, but you will need a Schengen visitor visa for access to visit Spain.
During your visit to Spain you will essentially need to do 3 things: Visit and view properties with us and our trusted partners, meet with lawyers and grant a Power of Attorney and open a bank account
We will take care of all arrangements and accompany you. We have over 30 years’ experience with international real estate investors. Throughout this time we have built a network of trusted partners including banks, developers, agents and lawyers to help ensure a smooth process for your visit and property investment.
On returning home you will need to make a transfer of deposit to secure the property if this was not done during your visit. Completion of the property typically takes two to three months. Your lawyer can undertake this in full in your absence.
The requirements for the Investor Visa are:
- Minimum investment of 500,000€
- Clean criminal record
- No previous refusal of entry or visa to the EU
- Sufficient medical insurance
- Bank statements to prove sufficient income to maintain living in Spain
On completion of the property purchase your lawyer will then process your visa application. Typically, this takes a further 10 working days before issue.
Lawyer fees will apply for the processing of the Golden Visa for the applicant and family. Such fees will vary depending on family make up and situation. We recommend providing around 8,000€ for a family application. In addition a government processing fee applies of 70 Euros per applicant.
Buying real estate in Spain attracts certain taxes, stamp duty and fees. We recommend investors budget for around 11-12% in total, the main element being purchase taxes. In addition there are conveyancing fees, typically around 1.0% of the property purchase price.
Qualifying family members include spouse and all children under 18. Children 18 and over and parents can qualify if dependent.
Investors will only be taxed on their worldwide income if they are resident in Spain for over 183 days in any year. For those non-resident individuals tax is charged at 24.75% on income derived in the country, such as rental income. This can be reduced with expenses.
Capital gains tax (CGT) applies to any profit on the sale of a property. CGT starts at 24% rising to 27% for gains over 50,000€. There are allowances and deductions that can be made.
Annual property taxes are payable to the local authority, typically 200€ – 400€ per year for an apartment.
Living and Working
Applicants deciding to live full time in Spain will require medical insurance. However families will have access to all public services including state medical care and schooling. State schooling follows the Spanish curriculum but there are English international schools also.
The Spanish residence permit gained through the Golden Visa allows freedom of travel throughout the EU Schengen zone.
Consult with us as to your eligibility and suitability for the Golden Visa Programme in Spain. We will advise on the programme fit for your family structure, country of residency, financing and other circumstances. No two families are the same, but we have experienced and dealt with most situations.