Introduced in 2013, the Golden Visa allows any non-EU citizen wanting to make the move to live in Spain to provide significant investment in the Spanish economy and gain residency through a fast-tracked procedure. It is an increasingly popular option for those looking to relocate to Spain and become residents and can be done by buying property in Spain. We have put together everything you need to know about the process of buying real estate in Spain and using your Golden Visa to apply for Spanish residency.
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How do I qualify for the Spanish Golden Visa?
There are multiple ways to qualify for a Golden Visa to gain a residency permit from the Spanish Government. Namely, investing money in the Spanish public debt, having a business set up in Spain, or most popularly, you can buy a property in Spain, investing a minimum of €500,000 in the property purchase.
95% of Golden Visas are obtained through the purchasing of a property in Spain.
There are also other criteria that you must meet in order to apply for the Golden Visa. These include, but are not limited to, having valid health insurance and having a clean criminal record in either Spain or the places you have resided in the last 5 years.
What are the Benefits of the Spanish Golden Visa?
Having a Golden Visa allows you to both stay and work in Spain. It also allows you to travel without a visa in the Schengen Zone of the European Union. Additionally, you do not have to permanently move to Spain, as long as you maintain your investment and reside in Spain for more than 183 days a year in Spain (more than half the year).
Additionally, the type of property doesn't affect your ability to apply and get a Golden Visa. You are able to buy one or multiple properties as long as the total investment exceeds the €500,000 minimum necessary to obtain a Spanish Golden Visa.
How long does Spain's Golden Visa last?
The original visa is valid for one year. This then allows you to apply for residency. A residence permit is valid for two years but can be renewed indefinitely as long as the investment is maintained and you retain your property.
Can I gain Spanish citizenship through my Golden Visa?
As long as you keep your permanent residency in Spain for at least a minimum of 10 years, you are able to apply for citizenship if you originally gained Spanish residency through a Golden Visa.
If you are Ibero-American, you can apply for Spanish citizenship after just 2 years of residence through a Golden Visa, making a property investment the most ideal route to obtain residency and ultimately citizenship.
Who will my Golden Visa cover?
A golden visa covers you and your immediate family. Including your spouse, your children (under 18 or financially dependent if over 18), and any dependent parents.
Can I get a mortgage or loan to pay for my property in Spain?
You can not acquire a Golden Visa by paying for your investment with money that you have gotten through a loan. The initial €500,000 investment must be entirely through your own funds.
However, if you choose to purchase a property that is more than the required €500,000 investment, then you may get a mortgage or loan to pay for any costs that are in the excess of that baseline amount. However, the initial €500,000 must be your own money.
Can I share my investment with other people?
You must be the sole investor to qualify for the Golden Visa. If you are choosing to have a joint investment, then all parties must pay a minimum of €500,000 each in order to qualify.
Will I have to pay income tax?
Unless you are considered a full-time resident of Spain, you will not be required to pay any income tax. You are considered a resident if you stay in Spain for more than half of the year (in excess of 183 days).
However, despite your residency status, you will still be required to pay any relevant taxes on the property you have purchased in Spain. This includes local (municipal) taxes and rental income taxes. If you are not a full-time resident, you will be required to pay 24.75% of any income you receive from Spain, including any rental income. Read more about taxes within the Andalulica region here.