Did you know that Portugal Golden Visa provided 8,829 investors residency in Portugal through property investment? This is what the Portuguese Immigration and Borders Service (SEF) says. The number is from the years between 2012 and 2020.
Assistant Professor Kristin Surak at the London School of Economics (LSE) says that: “… despite the Covid-19 travel restrictions, the majority of OECD countries were not only allowing citizens but also those holding resident status to enter. In other words: An RBI-investment (Residence by Investment) in places like Portugal or Greece opened a closed border.”
Interesting yet? Let’s discover the benefits and the process of this investment type.
Property investment in Portugal or Greece can lead to EU residency and citizenship
In a period of mobility restrictions, property investment can offer you more freedom. You may ask how. Thanks to the Golden Visa programs, it is possible to make a certain amount of investment and obtain residency in return.
For example, the Portugal Golden Visa program requires you to buy a property at a minimum amount of €280,000. You can then apply for your Golden Visa. When approved, you will get a temporary residency right in Portugal. You need to stay in Portugal for at least seven days on average per year. At the end of five years, you can apply for citizenship and permanent residency as well.
Similarly, the Greece Golden Visa leads to EU residency. Unlike Portugal, the Greece Golden Visa program does not require you to stay in Greece on any day of the year. You can even renew your temporary residency indefinitely every five years.
Portugal offers different options of property investment
There are four main property investment types in Portugal. According to SEF, you need to make:
(1) Property Investment:
- €500,000 real estate purchase, or
- €400,000 real estate purchase, if the property is in a low-density area, or
(2) Rehabilitation Property Investment:
- €350,000 real estate purchase, if the property is at least 30 years of age, or if it is located in an urban rehabilitation area (though with less than 30 years), or
- €280,000 real estate purchase if such abovementioned property is also in a low-density area.
So, you can choose the best one according to your budget or location preference.
Greece offers the lowest investment threshold for EU residency
The attraction of Golden Visa is that buying a property in Greece for a minimum €250,000 investment in is sufficient to get residency in the country. Note that it is the lowest threshold to become an EU resident among other Golden Visa programs.
Greece also offers an extended family inclusion. As other Golden Visa programs do, Greece Golden Visa includes your spouse and children under the age of 21. In addition to this, your parents and parents-in-law can also receive a residency card without any further requirements.
A second residency has become more important in the time of the pandemic
The pandemic has hit the whole world one way or another. High net worth investors have also been affected by this. They reshaped their outlook on a typical investment.
“Before the Covid-19 crisis, investors looked to second citizenship as a platform from which to dive head-on into a world of greater interaction, travel, and globalization. Mobility rights took . . . center-stage . . . by blocking international travel, the Covid-19 pandemic has had the effect of reminding investors . . . the fundamental importance of ‘home’. In other words, Covid-19 has shifted investor priorities, refocusing them on places that are healthy, pleasant, and welcoming.”
This is why Golden Visa programs have gained more importance. They offer a fast and easy way to become EU residents. You can become an EU resident in a matter of a few months.
When you obtain a second residency, it becomes easier for you to travel between two countries. So, this offers investors and their families the comfort of ease of mobility in an unprecedented time.
Healthcare system and safety are other important issues while determining a second residency option. Thanks to especially Portugal’s and Greece’s developed healthcare systems, you don’t need to worry much. Especially Portugal’s healthcare system has been ranking high on different recent health reports and indexes. It also ranks as the 3rd safest country in the world, according to the 2020 Global Peace Index.
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