At the end of September 2013 a new law granting non-EU citizens automatic residency when they spend €500,000 or more on property or land in Spain was passed by the Spanish government.

The long-anticipated legislation has opened the door to thousands of potential investors looking to benefit from Spain’s historic low property prices and fantastic lifestyle benefits.

Key features: 


Acquisition of immovable property or land with an overall net investment contribution above €500,000. Taxes are not included in the investment threshold. For example, a property purchase for €460,000 plus 10% tax equals €506,000, but the applicable VAT (€46,000) would not count towards being above the €500,000 threshold. Multiple investments are allowed.


The Golden Visa has a duration of 1 year and it can be converted into a Residency Permit. The Residency Permit has an initial duration of 2 years and is renewable for periods of 5 years as long as the investment is maintained.


The Golden Visa / Residency Permit allows unrestricted travel within the Schengen Area. The holder of the Golden Visa / Residency Permit has the right to remain in Spain for an unlimited period of time and in the rest of the Schengen Area for 3 months within a period of 6 months, during the period in which the Golden Visa / Residency Permit is valid.


The investors’ spouse (or person with a similar relationship), children under 18 years (and over 18 years if economically dependent) and other dependent ascendants can also obtain the Golden Visa / Residency Permit, thus enabling the entire family to benefit from the scheme. The investor and the beneficiary family members are entitled to work in Spain.


No minimum stay in Spain is required during the first year (Golden Visa) or during the further periods of 2 and 5 years (Residency Permit). The investor is not required to travel to Spain and the extension can be made by a representative. However, once the Residency Permit is granted the investor must obtain a Spanish ID card and he / she is required to appear in person to activate the ID card.


The application for the Golden Visa can be submitted at the Spanish Consulate in the investor’s country of residence. The investor can apply directly in Spain for the Residency Permit while legally staying in Spain on any kind of visa or visa exemption (for example as a tourist).


The investment can be made through a legal entity provided that:

i) The legal entity is not located in a tax haven.

ii) The applicant has the majority of the voting rights in the company and is fit enough to appoint and dismiss the majority of the company directors. 


Couples acquiring properties together are not required to comply with the €500,000 minimum investment individually. Unmarried couples, including same sex couples, can also benefit from the scheme as long as they register their domestic partnership with the Spanish Civil Registry.


There is no restriction to the use of the property by the investor. If the property is re-sold then the investor and the beneficiary family members will lose the right to reside.


As the investor is not required to stay a minimum time in Spain, his / her tax domicile will not be affected. A non-Spanish national becomes a Spanish tax resident when he / she stays longer than 183 days in Spain during any one calendar year.


The Golden Visa / Residency Permit does not automatically entitle the investor to Spanish citizenship but he / she can obtain either permanent residency (independent from the investment) or citizenship if he / she proves effective residence (more than 183 days per year) during the legal period (5 years for permanent residency and 10 years for citizenship).


The Golden Visa applications are processed by the Consulates and granted within 10 days of filing. The Residency Permit applications are processed electronically and granted within a maximum time limit of 20 days from filing. 

The applicant must meet the following requirements:

  • Not to have entered or stayed illegally in Spanish territory
  • Not to have been refused entry in any of the 26 Schengen countries
  • Have sufficient economic means to cover personal and family living expenses (€26,000 for the applicant plus €7,000 for each family member)
  • Be 18 years or over, with no criminal record in Spain nor in the countries where the applicant has resided in the previous 5 years
  • Have public or private health insurance with an entity authorised to operate in Spain, which will provide full medical coverage for a minimum period of 1 year
  • Prove ownership of one or more immovable properties or plots of land in Spain with an overall net investment contribution above €500,000
  • Proof of investment must be made through the Registry of Property certificate attesting ownership or, if the ownership title is not registered, via a copy of the public deed and proof of filing the deed in the Registry

For more information and advice on obtaining Residency in Spain please contact our Residency in Spain office on +34 933 562 989 or via email

Speak to an advisor today to start your Residency In Spain application.

Call our expert advisors on +34 933 562 989 about your Residency application or contact us using the short application request form.

We can help with all application details, provide up-to-date information on the new residency process and manage a property search that is tailored to your needs

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