Portugal is one of several countries that offer “Golden Visas” to investors willing to make a substantial capital investment into the country’s economy. In exchange, investors and their immediate family members are granted temporary residency permits (renewable for permanent residency after 2 years) in addition to access to the European Union (EU) and social benefits.
When it comes to Golden Visa Residency Programs, Portugal has become one of the most popular options to obtain European residency status. According to the most recent Immigration and Borders authority (SEF) report, Portugal’s Golden Visa scheme had amassed EUR 3 billion in issued permits by March of 2017, with EUR 2.4 billion from real estate purchase alone. To date, approximately 4,800 Portuguese residency permits have been granted to foreign investors and just over 7,000 to immediate family members since the program’s launch in 2012, totaling at more than 11,000 Golden Visa residence permits issued in the program’s five-year span.
For 2017, Portugal has issued 679 Golden Visa residence permits to investors and their immediate family from outside of the European Union, a number that will continue to rise throughout the year. China is by far the country with the most citizens to have secured permits under the Portugal Golden Visa Program, followed by Brazil, Russia, South Africa, and Lebanon.
By now you might be asking, “What makes Portugal’s Golden Visa Residency Program so popular?” Below we will discuss details of Portugal’s Golden Visa Program and benefits provided to applicants and their eligible family members.
Why Invest in Portugal’s Golden Visa Program?
For starters, Portugal offers one of the most affordable Golden Visas around. For as little as EUR 250,000* applicants and their immediate family members are granted temporary Portuguese residency permits, with the option of applying for full Portuguese citizenship after 5 years of permanent residence. Holders of Portuguese residence permits can live, work, and study anywhere in Portugal and can also take advantage of mobility throughout any of the 28 EU member states, including the Schengen Region. However, it’s important to note that permanent residency in Portugal is not required to maintain residency status. In fact, Portugal only requires successful applicants to reside in Portugal 7 days within the first year, and with Portugal’s Golden Visa option through real estate investment, many are choosing to make this European country the perfect vacation “getaway.”
*While investment options for Portugal’s Golden Visa Residency Program starts at EUR 250,000, the minimum investment amount in Portuguese real estate is EUR 350,000 if investment criteria are met.
Why Invest in Portuguese Real Estate?
As mentioned above, Portugal’s Golden Visa Residency Program has become one of the most popular options for foreign investors seeking European immigration and residency solutions—namely in real estate investment. Indeed, over 95% of Portuguese residency permits are issued through property investment, with more than half of real estate purchased located in major metropolitan areas.
Through Portugal’s real estate option, investors are required to make a minimum investment of EUR 500,000 in a real estate property located anywhere in the country. However, eligible applicants can also choose to purchase a real estate property constructed at least 30 years ago, or one that is located in an urban area. With the latter two options, investors can purchase a property for a minimum of EUR 350,000.
With any real estate option, investors must maintain ownership of their property for at least 5 years, which can be re-sold thereafter. This means that investors are not required to physically live in their purchased property for the duration of residency, but can use it as a vacation “getaway” or even a rental home while maintaining their Portuguese residency status.
If you aren’t sold yet on Portugal’s Golden Visa Residency Program, it might help to know that Portugal’s property market has experienced a “boom” like no other European country, making Portuguese real estate an increasingly sought-after residency option for foreign investors. Even in Portugal’s most populated areas, investors are taking advantage of the country’s prime real market, which has more than doubled since 2016. Despite the evident property market boom, purchasing prices remain at affordable rate and it’s no wonder that Portugal has become the preferred option in Residency by Investment Programs across Europe.
For more information about Portugal’s Golden Visa Residency Program, please click here.
To see our Golden Visa Residency Comparison Table, please click here.
To see our Citizenship and Residency by Investment in Real Estate Comparison Table, please click here.
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