SPANISH GOLDEN VISA PROGRAM STILL SEEN AS BEST REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT
The Golden Visa Program was introduced on the market not much longer after Portugal introduced their very own Golden Visa scheme.
Both countries competed in attracting wealthy non EU individuals into investing in their fallen economies in exchange for a permanent residency, subsequently leading to permanent citizenship subject to qualifying residence and language requirements. Since the introduction of both programs on the global citizenship market, both countries reported positive returns via this interesting concept of direct foreign investment, and equally enjoyed the improvements to the local economy as a result of the existence of the program- i.e. faster and wider job creation especially within the flourishing tourism and construction industry.
Following the success of both programs, Spain and Portugal reviewed their residency schemes and carefully considered the available investment routes to secure continuing interest from global investors. Despite Portugal’s Golden Visa Program being more popular thanks to its numerous investment routes, including cheaper entry level real estate investment route, and faster route to citizenship (following 5 years permanent residency), the Spanish Residency Program, still operating under its original investment paths, is considered the best for the real estate investment.
Despite the long reported global crisis, Spain is still full of construction ready real estates, currently selling at a very competitive prices. Where currently Portugal requires EUR500,000 property investment, which can comfortably buy 2 properties, then Spain can award 6-10 properties for the same amount. The possibility of a high return on their investments, did not come unnoticed by Chinese and Russian investors who continue to top the list of the most proactive applicants today. Both types of investors are very much attracted to the Mediterranean lifestyle and choice of luxury real estate in the Mediterranean countries, and in particular find the currently low prices of such properties irresistible.
It was reported that Spanish residency investor scheme so far brought in EUR742 million worth of investment from foreign investors purchasing properties in Spain in order to obtain residence visa. In the first 15 months of its existence, the program (introduced in 2013) attracted 530 investors out of which 490 received their short term residence permit through property investment route. Overall, the program attracted EUR2,173 million deriving from property investments and family reunification applications.
The reports thus indicate that even despite the longest route to citizenship-following 10 years of permanent residence- and regardless of the concept of the program – i.e. residency rights achieved by parting with specific financial investment, the Spanish Golden Visa Investor Program agrees with shrewd investors as it actually opens doors to a very fruitful property investment platform. Not only are investors very likely to receive a possible high return on their investments (both sale and rental) but they also are awarded with an opportunity to own a luxury second home for an incredibly low price in one of the safest and most popular destinations in Europe and in the Mediterranean region.
Spain is therefore confident in its ability to secure continuous attraction of foreign investors to the country, and despite their competitors’ frequent changes to their own citizenship programs, Spain will sustain their residency scheme at its current form for now.