Golden Visa - Greek Residency
Updated: Mar 31, 2022
The Greek Golden Visa Law offers the lowest cost option for residency in Europe by granting a five-year residence permit in return for a real estate investment of a minimum value of 250,000€, which is the lowest investment level among all real estate residency visa schemes in Europe.
The Golden Visa Law - Overview
Residency for 3-Generation families from day one
The lowest minimum investment in EU is 250,000€
Direct access to all Schengen Area from anywhere
No minimum stays requirements
Combination of more than one properties
No restrictions regarding the choice of the properties
Both commercial and residential properties can be rented
No need to become tax resident
Low annual property tax 0,2%
Free movement: No border controls - no passport stamps
Great investment opportunities in the local real estate market
Investment placed in EURO (€) currency
The Golden Visa Law
The Greek Golden Visa Law offers the lowest cost option for residency in Europe by granting a five-year residence permit in return for a real estate investment of a minimum value of 250,000€, which is the lowest investment level among all real estate residency visa schemes in Europe. The investment may consist of more than one properties (residential or commercial) and there are no restrictions regarding the location, the age or the exploitation of the assets. The Golden Visa is automatically renewed every five years, provided that the ownership of the assets is maintained. The holders of the Golden Visa may apply for Greek Citizenship and a European Passport after seven years of lawful residency. Once applicants have acquired citizenship, they can dispose of their investment in Greece as no further visa renewals are required.
The application practically covers three generations (investor and spouse, parents of both the investor and his/her spouse and any children up to the age of 21). There is no minimum stay requirement for applicants to retain or renew the residence permits. Greece is a member of the EU Schengen Zone so the holders of the Greek Golden Visa enjoy the privilege of free movement within the Schengen Zone, without any requirement for further visa applications, ranking the Greek passport 7th in the world. The stay in those countries cannot exceed 90 days in each 6-month period and the RP holders have access to health or education services, just like any European citizen.
Questions - Answers
Who is considered a family member? Are unmarried partners entitled to a residence permit?
According to the law, family members of third country citizens entering the country include: a. Spouses, b. The direct descendants of the spouses, who are under the age of 21 (children), c. The direct ascendants of the investor or his/her spouse (parents and parents-in-law). Unmarried partners are not considered to be family members.
Can my relatives in the ascending line (namely my parents and my spouse’s parents) or my children who are over the age of 18 accompany me (in cases of real estate ownership in Greece) and fall under the family provision? What if my children turn 18 during the validity period of my residence permit?
Ascendants fall under the afore-mentioned provision, but not children over
the age of 21. Children of third country nationals, who have been admitted to Greece under the terms and requirements of residence permit for property owners, are granted a residence permit for family reunification until the age of 21. After that age, they can apply for a renewal in the form of a 3-year independent residence permit until they reach the age of 24. Then, it is possible to apply for further renewals according to pertinent immigration legislation.
Can I travel to other countries within the European Union or Schengen Area with the residence permit for investors (Golden Visa)? Are there any conditions related to this?
With the Schengen agreement all border controls have been abolished between the member states. The Greek Golden Visa is valid as far as the free movement in the Schengen area is concerned. Third country nationals who get the Greek Golden Visa and travel with the special residence card (proving their status) do not get a stamp anywhere in the Schengen area, even if they are transiting between non-EU destinations.
Can the residence permit be considered as a work permit? Can my spouse, the legal representative of my company, my children or myself work in Greece?
In no case does the residence permit provide access to any type of employment. However, exercising economic activity in the capacity of a shareholder is allowed. The family members that have been granted with a residence permit for the same duration as the sponsor are also not granted access to the employment market.
Does the amount of €250,000 include the Transfer Tax? What should the value of the investment be if the ownership deed includes the name of both spouses?
The amount of €250,000 refers to the price indicated on the contract and does not include the Transfer Tax. In cases of the acquisition of a 250 k. property by spouses, the residence right is granted to both spouses.
Can I obtain more than one properties with individual value less than €250,000, if the combined value is equal to or greater than € 250,000?
You are entitled to residency rights regardless of the number of properties you own, provided that their combined value is equal to or greater than €250,000.
Can I buy commercial property or a combination of commercial and residential properties or land?
The law states that €250,000 must be the stated price on the contract. It does not distinguish between commercial and residential properties.
Are there any restrictions that apply to the real estate market? (e.g. location, size in square meters or other factors).
No restrictions arise from the Greek Golden Visa Law, opposite to other countries relevant legislation, regarding the location of the property (i.e. it makes no difference whether the property is located downtown or in the province). However, there are some general restrictions on the purchase of properties located in a limited number of border regions. Individual or legal entities that are affected by the restrictions above may request the lifting of the ban for the border regions, when submitting their application, which should clearly state the intended use of the property.
What is the arrangement regarding the access to education and health services? Can the children of the residence permit holder attend a Greek public school?
The holders of the residence permit have access to public education, as any Greek. Regarding access to health services, third country citizens and their family members who fall under the provisions of this law, are required to have an insurance that covers their healthcare and medical care expenses.
If eight third country citizens jointly buy a property for €2,000,000, are all joint owners entitled to a residence permit?
Yes, provided that each of them has invested €250,000.
If someone holds a long-term Visa issued by another Schengen country, does this Visa need to be cancelled to obtain a Greek Visa?
A Type C Travel Visa issued by another Schengen country gives the applicant the ability to enter Greece and settle issues regarding the purchase of the property as well as to apply for the Golden Visa.
Is it possible to rent the real estate property to third parties?
Yes. The investment may be rented and generate a stable and decent income for the investors.