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April 1, 2024
5 min

Spain Golden Visa: Complete Guide

Brittany Collins

The Spain Golden Visa offers numerous benefits, from visa-free travel within the Schengen area to potential pathways towards Spanish citizenship. The investment program suits non-EU citizens interested in obtaining official status in the EU for themselves and their families. After 5 years of living in Spain with a Golden Visa, a person can apply for permanent residence, and after 10 years — for Spain citizenship.

The most popular golden visa option is buying real estate. In this case, the minimum investment is €500,000. In this guide, we will discuss eligibility criteria and highlight various investment options that can pave your way towards securing this coveted permit.

Spain Golden Visa: Complete Guide

Spain Golden Visa: Complete Guide

Understanding the Spain Golden Visa Program

Non-EU and non-Swiss citizens can gain access to the Spain Golden Visa program, allowing them to live, work or study in Spain by investing in different economic fields. After 5 years of living in Spain with a Golden Visa, a person can apply for permanent residence, and after 10 years — for Spain citizenship.

There are six investment options available for the Spain Golden Visa program:

  1. Real estate purchase — €500,000.

  2. Opening a deposit in a Spanish bank — €1,000,000.

  3. Purchase of shares of Spanish companies — €1,000,000.

  4. Purchase of units in investment funds — €1,000,000.

  5. Purchase of government bonds — €2,000,000.

  6. Business investments — no minimum investment.

Investing in real estate is the cheapest option in other ways to obtain a Spain residence permit. Investments in stocks, bonds, shares in a fund, or deposits will need €1 million or more in the country’s economy.

Benefits of the Golden Visa Program

The Spain golden visa program offers numerous benefits to its holders beyond just gaining Spanish residency:

  • no prerequisites for education, business experience, or language skill: to invest and obtain Golden Visas, applicants do not need to present proof of their business experience, provide degrees, or demonstrate any level of Spanish fluency;

  • economic freedom: the program allows you to invest your wealth where it can grow and be protected while providing you with access to Europe’s thriving economy;

  • mobility: with a golden visa, you gain unrestricted travel within the Schengen Area, which includes 26 European countries;

  • warm climate: winters in Spain are relatively warm, with an average temperature of +5—11 °C, and summers aren’t sweltering in most parts of the country, with an average temperature of +26—31 °C;

  • lifestyle benefits: Spain offers excellent healthcare facilities, a high-quality education system, and a vibrant culture;

  • EU nationality in ten years: after residing in Spain for five years, an investor may apply for permanent residency. They can apply for Spanish citizenship in five more years.

Who Can Apply for the Spain Golden Visa

Under golden visa program conditions, investors don’t have to take language and cultural exams and are not required to live in Spain.

Spain Golden Visa requirements for the main applicant:

  • age over 18 years old;

  • a legal income;

  • money for investment is earned outside of Spain;

  • no criminal records;

  • no debts in Spain;

  • medical insurance.

Along with an investor, other family members can also be added to the application and get Spain Golden Visas. The spouse, unmarried dependent children and dependent parents can get Spain’s residence permits under the Golden Visa program with the investor.

Family members in the applications gain the same legal resident status as the primary applicant. It means that entire families can enjoy the advantages offered, including the right to live, work, and study anywhere throughout the Spanish territory.

Requirements for Family Members

Family member

Requirements

Investor’s spouse or partner

In a registered marriage or unregistered partnership, including same-sex couples

Children

Above 18

Over 18 — unmarried, without children and financially dependent on the investor

Investor or spouse’s parents

Financially dependent on the investor

The Spain Golden Visa program offers several investment options to potential applicants. Individuals must invest at least €500,000 in the Spanish economy to qualify. It can be achieved through real estate or making direct capital investments.

Real estate Investment is one of the popular methods of investing in the Spanish economy. The minimum requirement for this option is a property purchase worth €500,000. Whether it’s a luxurious villa on the Costa del Sol or an apartment in bustling Barcelona, plenty of opportunities across the country could meet your needs and preferences.

Real estate investment benefits:

  • purchasing property: you may choose to buy one expensive property or multiple cheaper properties that total up to the required amount;

  • renting out: after acquiring the property, you have complete freedom over its use, including renting it out for additional income while still maintaining your eligibility for residency under the golden visa program;

  • selling property: once you’ve held onto your purchased properties for five years and maintained residence status, you can sell them without losing your permanent resident status.

Besides real estate purchases, another way to secure a golden visa is by making direct capital investments into Spanish companies or government bonds. These types of assets contribute significantly towards boosting the Spanish economy and provide investors with potential returns depending on market performance.

Italy residency by investment

The Spain Golden Visa program has grown to be a well-liked real estate investment choice for affluent people looking for residency rights. This option requires a minimum investment of €500,000.

Required Documents for the Spain Golden Visa

To apply for the golden visa program, you need to prepare several essential documents:

  1. A completed application form is available from official government websites.

  2. Your original passport, along with photocopies of all pages.

  3. Certified copies of your birth certificate and marriage certificate, if applicable.

  4. Evidence showing proof of investment, such as property deeds or bank statements confirming funds transfer into a Spanish account.

  5. A health insurance policy covering full medical coverage in Spain issued by an authorised insurer recognised in Europe.

All these documents should be translated into Spanish by an official translator and notarised before submission. Note that each record has a specified expiry period, so ensure they are still valid when submitting them.

Steps Involved in Application Process

1

2 weeks

Select the investment option

Decide which type of investment suits you best, whether a real estate purchase or capital contribution and proceed accordingly, making necessary investments and ensuring minimum thresholds are met.

2

1 month

Getting the required documents and application

It means collecting, verifying, translating, and notarising the required documentation discussed above. Once everything is ready, submit your application online or in person at your local Spanish embassy or consulate. Applications are usually processed within 20 working days but may take longer, depending on the volume of submissions and time of year.

3

30 days

Obtaining residence permit cards

The investor collects residence permit cards personally in Spain. The investor and their family members are not obligated to reside in Spain after obtaining residency by investment. The investor must visit the country only to renew the residence permit.

4

After 3 years, then after 5 years

Renewal of the residence permit

The first Spain residence permit card is valid for three years. After its expiration, the investor can extend the status for another five years. The renewal procedure takes place in Spain.

Spain Golden Visa Renewal Process

The first Spain residence permit is issued for three years, and the following ones are valid for five years. Here are some general steps that may be involved in the renewal process:

  • maintain your qualifying investment: the golden visa is typically granted based on specific investments, such as real estate, business projects, or government bonds. To renew your visa, you will need to demonstrate that you still maintain the qualifying investment;

  • proof of residence: you may be required to provide proof of your continuous residence in Spain during the initial visa period. This could include utility bills, rental agreements, or other documents that establish your residency;

  • updated documentation: you will likely need to submit updated documentation, such as a valid passport, proof of financial means, and any other documents required by the authorities.

  • background checks: ss part of the renewal process, you may undergo background checks to ensure that you meet the necessary criteria for residency in Spain;

  • application submission: you will need to submit your renewal application to the appropriate Spanish authorities, following their specified procedures and requirements. This may involve completing forms, paying fees, and providing all the necessary documentation.

Long-Term Impact of Acquiring a Golden Visa

As a resident of Spain under the golden visa scheme, you enjoy legal protections that safeguard your assets against unforeseen circumstances, such as political instability or economic downturns back home.

Diversifying Personal Assets and Broadening Global Mobility Options:

  • diversification: by investing abroad through programs like Spain’s Golden Visa program, you can effectively diversify your portfolio, spreading risk and reducing potential losses should any single market experience a downturn;

  • mobility: apart from investing freely within the EU, residents under this scheme can also travel to 26 other countries in the Schengen zone without requiring separate visas, thus increasing their global mobility exponentially.

Acquiring a golden visa has immediate and long-term benefits. It’s not just about gaining new residential privileges; it’s a strategic move towards securing your financial future, diversifying personal assets, and broadening global mobility options.

The Spain Golden Visa program is an investment in your future. Investing in Spanish real estate or injecting funds into the country’s economy creates a foundation that will expand and bear substantial returns over time.

Moreover, holding a golden visa opens up wealth management and asset protection opportunities. You can take advantage of the European markets and diversify your investments as a golden visa holder.

Spain Citizenship After Golden Visa

An investor with a Spanish Golden Visa can become a Spanish citizen by naturalisation — move to the country, get permanent residence in a few years, and only apply for citizenship.

To obtain Spanish citizenship, adult applicants must live in the country with residence permits or permanent residence cards for at least 10 years.

You must renounce your first citizenship because Spain prohibits its citizens from holding dual citizenship simultaneously. The exceptions apply to nationals of many Latin American nations and three European nations — France, Portugal, and Andorra, where Spanish is recognised as the official language.

EU Golden Visa Programs Allowing Dual Citizenship

Investment program

Costs

Term of obtaining passport

🇵🇹 Portugal Golden Visa

€250,000+

In 5 years

🇪🇸 Spain Golden Visa

€500,000+

In 10 years

€250,000+

In 7 years

€300,000+

The applicant’s expenses

In 5 years

€250,000+

In 10 years

Obligations Attached to Holding a Spain Golden Visa

While there are many benefits attached to holding a Golden Visa Spain 2023, there are also some obligations that come with it:

  • maintaining health insurance coverage: All Spanish golden visa holders must have health insurance coverage while residing in Spain. It can be obtained from any recognised Spanish financial institution;

  • paying taxes: If you’re employed locally or earning income elsewhere while living in Spain under this scheme, you need proof that taxes on your income are being paid. Even if you’re not working in the country, the Spanish tax office would require evidence of tax payments on foreign earnings.

Conclusion

The Spain Golden Visa program offers various investment options, including real estate purchases and direct capital investments such as incorporating a business or depositing funds in a bank account. To qualify for the visa, individuals must invest at least €500,000 in the Spanish economy and maintain residency status for five years before selling any purchased properties.

One of the significant benefits of holding a Spanish golden visa is the privilege of visa-free travel within Europe’s Schengen area.

Acquiring a Spain Golden Visa has immediate and long-term benefits, including securing your financial future through investing in Spanish real estate or the economy and accessing diverse investment portfolios for wealth management and asset protection.

Frequently Asked Questions

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