- Golden Visa Spain
Golden Visa Spain
A Golden Visa is a system where you can essentially buy residency by investing in the country’s economy. This can be through investing in a property worth over a certain amount, by buying a property outright or by contributing money to a national artistic cause, such as investing in the development of national parks or other sites that will encourage economic growth.
Golden visas have been around since the 1980s, and there are different rules depending on the country you’re applying in. In Spain it has been possible to get a Golden Visa since September 2013. Many expats, especially from the UK, Germany and Russia, want to move to Spain for its sun, sea and laid-back way of living, and are choosing to buy up properties out there and gain residency at the same time.
The minimum you must invest into a Spain property to achieve the Golden Visa status is €500,000. This can come from one or multiple investors.
To begin with, investors need to open a Spanish bank account and transfer the investment money into it. Then, they must apply for a residency visa which will take around 2 weeks to process. The visa lasts for 2 years, whereupon it can be renewed for another 5 as long as all the money checks out. Once you’ve lived in the country for 5 years, you can then apply for permanent residency, and enjoy the gorgeous sunshine and culture for as long as you like.
It’s not an automatic process, and there are other checks you need to go through before you can receive the official residency. For one thing, you need to show evidence that you have the means to support yourself once you move out there. You must also undergo a criminal record check and another check to see if you have ever been refused a Visa from another country.
You also need to be aware of the extra costs of getting a Golden Visa, such as the solicitor’s fees, stamp duty, VAT and other taxes – usually this will add up to around 10% of the property value.
Once you’ve moved over to your dream Spanish property, you and your family can enjoy many of the benefits of the country, such as schooling and healthcare. Make sure you take out medical insurance as well, as this is standard practice in Spain.
The subject of some controversy, the aspect of Golden Visa Spain residents are most unhappy about is that it gives tourists control over the property scene, and means that, while the country benefits financially, many of the old fishing villages have become tourist-centric and filled with non-Spanish speakers. However, many locals depend on tourism and the economic boost brought by expats who have been granted the Golden Visa, and almost all of them will be friendly and welcoming.