GREECE GOLDEN VISA - THE GREEK RESIDENCY BY INVESTMENT PROGRAM
The Greece residence by investment program was first introduced in 2013. The Greece Golden Visa has rapidly become Europe’s most popular program, with thousands of applicants each year. The Greece Golden Visa offers a real estate investment and a business investment option. The approved applicant receives a 5-year residence permit, after which they can apply for permanent residence. Residents living in Greece can apply for Greek citizenship after 7 years. The Greek passport is one of the world’s best and provides visa-free travel to the U.S. and freedom of movement across Europe. Greece is world-renowned for its beautiful beaches, its amazing food, and its lifestyle.
Greece Golden Visa through Real Estate investment
A residence permit for real estate owners is a new type of residence permit for third-country citizens who have entered the country legally on any kind of visa (type C or D) or are legal residents in the country, even if the residence permit they hold does not allow for change of residence scope. Beneficiaries of the right of entry and the permanent residence permit, which shall be renewed every 5 years, are:
a) third-country citizens who own real estate property in Greece, either personally or through a legal entity of which they own the total of the company shares, provided the minimum value of the property is €250.000;
b) third-country citizens who have signed a lease agreement – for a minimum of 10 years – for hotel accommodations or furnished tourist residences in integrated tourist resorts according to article 8, paragraph 2 of Law 4002/2011 (Government Gazette 180 A’), provided the minimum cost of the lease is €250.000;
c) third-country citizens who either reside legally, with a residence permit, in Greece, or wish to enter and reside in the country, and who have full ownership and possession of real estate property in Greece, which they have purchased before the enactment of law 4146/2013, provided that they had purchased the real estate property for a minimum of €250,000 or the current objective value of their real estate property is at a minimum of €250,000;
d) third-country citizens who purchase a plot of land or acreage and proceed to erect a building, provided that the cumulative value of the land purchase and the contract with the construction company is at minimum €250,000; or
e) third-country citizens who have signed a timeshare agreement (lease), based on the provisions of law 1652/1986. A timeshare lease, according to the provisions of article 1 of law 1652/1986 is the commitment of the lessor to grant, each year, to the lessee, for the duration of the timeshare, the use of the tourist accommodation, and to provide to them the relevant services for the determined period of time according to the contract, and the lessee must pay the agreed rent. Tourist accommodation for the implementation of this law refers to hotel units and generally tourist facilities operating under the permission of the Hellenic Tourism Organization (EOT), and have been subject to the provisions of the law by decision of the Secretary General of E.O.T. Timeshare is agreed for a period of 1 to 60 years.
f) family members of the third-country citizens described above.
Greece Golden Visa through Business Investment
Activity There are no restrictions regarding the sector of activity or the location of the investment project. The requirement that must be met by the investment is to have a positive impact on national development and the economy. Investment activity may be implemented through the construction of new facilities (greenfield investments) or business acquisitions, restructuring or expansion of current activities (brownfield investments). Factors taken into account for assessing the impact on national development and the economy are job creation, promotion of domestic resources and vertical integration of domestic production, export orientation, innovation and adoption of new technology.
Greece Residency Investment cost
The legal framework does not set specific limits regarding the total cost of the investment project. However, an investor applying for a residence permit under this program should contribute to the investment with an amount of at least €250,000, available through their own funds. In addition, the number of permits for executives allowed for each investment project depends on the amount of the total investor contribution. Finally, the total number of residence permits allowed for an investment project cannot exceed 10 (for investors and executives).
Greece Residence by Investment: A good choice if you seek better access to the EU.
In the last year, the Greece Golden Visa has emerged as the most popular residence by investment (RBI) program in the world with over 3,000 families relocating to Greece every year. Its success is due to its relatively affordable investment requirement and by providing permanent residence in a European Union country. The program was amended in 2018 to offer additional investment options. Nevertheless, the real estate investment option remains by far the most popular to investors. Approved applicants will receive a permanent residence permit in Greece valid for 5 years and renewable as long as you maintain the investment conditions. Spouse, children under 21 years old and parents can be admitted as dependents under the program. Naturalization into Greek citizenship is possible after 7 years of residence. The Greek nationality enables freedom of movement all across the European Union and its passport is one of the best in the world.
Stage 1 Month 1
Submit the application for an entry visa to the Greek consulate authority in your country of origin. Gather documents for the submission of the Golden Visa application, including a sale agreement for the Real Estate option. Submission is made to the Alien and Immigration Department at the Decentralized Authority where the investment is located.
Stage 2 Month 2
The authority issues a confirmation that the application has been received. The applicant has one year to submit biometrics and complete the investment option.
Stage 3 Month 3
The Secretary General of the Decentralised Authority processes the application and issues the resident permit.
- No physical presence requirement
- Can apply to citizenship after 7 years
- Provides a 5-year residence permit
- Applicants can bring their parents and their children up to 21 years of age
- Right to travel within the Schengen area
- Provide a police report and be of good character
- Provide a medical certificate
- Possess health insurance
- Not allowed to work if choosing the real estate option
Does Greece offer citizenship by investment?
Investors can apply for citizenship in Greece after 7 years of residence. To obtain citizenship, investors must have been residing primarily in Greece during the period. For investors looking to obtain new citizenship, we generally recommend looking into actual citizenship by investment programs, such as the Vanuatu citizenship in the South Pacific, St. Lucia citizenship in the Caribbean, or the Malta citizenship in the EU. Alternatively, there is also the Portugal Golden Visa with which investors can apply for citizenship after 5 years without the necessity of having resided in the country.