real estate golden visa in spain

Golden Visa Spain, will it survive?


It is May 24th of 2023. Next Sunday on May 28th Spain is up for local elections. As always most Spanish political parties & politicians want to make the biggest news splash possible. A recurring tool they use is promising improvements in the housing and rental market of Spain. This has been shown this year with the rushed passing of the new Spanish rental law.

Over the last weeks, outcries about another subject were heard on all news outlets. The Spanish Golden Visa scheme. Different politicians as for example Iñigo Errejon are presenting the government with several arguments against the “Golden Visa”.

In this post we would like to cover everything related to the Spanish Golden Visa, how it stands in today’s political arena, and finally our opinion on what will most likely happen.

Let’s get started!

This Post at a Glimpse

What is the Golden visa in Spain? (The Law)

The Golden Visa is a type of residency visa that grants non-EU citizens and their direct families the right to live and work in Spain. The visa was introduced in the year 2013, as a way to attract foreign investment to Spain and stimulate economic growth. The law 14/2013 of September 27th states:

Article 63. Residence Visa for Investors:


Non-resident foreigners who intend to enter Spanish territory to make a significant capital investment may apply for a stay visa, or, if applicable, a residence visa for investors.


  1. A significant capital investment shall be understood as one that meets one of the following conditions:

a) An initial investment equal to or greater than 2 million euros in Spanish public debt securities, or equal to or greater than 1 million euros in shares or social participations of Spanish companies, or bank deposits in Spanish financial institutions.

b) The acquisition of real estate in Spain with an investment value equal to or greater than 500,000 euros per applicant.

c) A business project to be developed in Spain that is considered and accredited as being of general interest, for which compliance with at least one of the following conditions will be assessed:

1st Creation of jobs.

2nd Realization of an investment with significant socioeconomic impact in the geographical area in which the activity will be carried out.

3rd Relevant contribution to scientific and/or technological innovation.

  1. It shall also be understood that the foreign applicant for the visa has made a significant capital investment when the investment is made by a legal entity, domiciled in a territory that is not considered a tax haven by Spanish regulations, and the foreigner directly or indirectly holds the majority of its voting rights and has the power to appoint or dismiss the majority of the members of its governing body.

Since the publishing of this law, it has become a popular option for investors from all around the world, as it allows them to obtain residency in Spain with a moderate investment.

One of the main benefits of the Golden Visa is that it offers flexibility in terms of residence and travel. Golden Visa holders can stay in Spain for up to one year without needing to renew their visas, and they can also travel freely within the Schengen Area. In addition, the Golden Visa can lead to permanent residency and citizenship in Spain, provided that certain conditions are met.

"Visa shall be granted via the acquisition of real estate in Spain with an investment value equal to or greater than 500,000 euros per applicant."
Wer Kann Auf Das Goldene Visum Zugreifen?​

Who can access the golden visa?

When looking at the real estate investment option, the Golden Visa is available to any person that is willing to spend at least 500.000€ on one or several properties within Spain. These 500.000€ don’t include mortgages or taxes.

It’s worth noting that the Golden Visa is available to both individuals and their direct families. Family members, including spouses, children under 18, and dependent children over 18, can be included in the Golden Visa application. This makes it a popular option for families looking to relocate to Spain and enjoy the country’s high quality of life, rich culture, and beautiful scenery.

Post of interest: How to buy an apartment in Barcelona (in 10 easy steps!)

"This makes it a popular option for families looking to relocate to Spain"

Duration of the Golden Visa in Spain

  • Visa after property downpayment: Once the downpayment contract is signed (it has to be signed in front of a notary), you’ll be able to obtain a 6 months visa. As long as you can prove that you have the remaining funds to complete the real estate purchase.

  • Visa after property purchase: When the applicant is outside of Spain, they will obtain a permit to reside and work throughout the national territory if they wish to do so. The duration of the permit is 1 year.

  • Residence authorization: When the applicant is legally in Spain, they will obtain a 3-year permit to reside and work throughout the national territory if they wish to do so.

  • Residence authorization renewal: After the first initial 3 years, you can renew your residency authorization for another period of five years. The only criteria you need to meet are: Still owning the initial asset, having enough financial means to live in Spain, and having medical insurance.
Anforderungen Für Das Goldene Visum In Spanien​

Requirements for the golden visa in Spain

Non-EU-residents will be able to apply for a Spanish Golden Visa via property investment.

But you’ll have to provide a variety of documentation to demonstrate that you’re eligible.

Golden Visa required documentation:

  • NIE: This is the ID number for foreigners issued by the Spanish government. You can apply for it easily at your local Spanish embassy or consulate. It helps strongly if you already have a letter from a Spanish real estate agency stating your intent to purchase a property. (Post of interest: Buyer’s agent in Barcelona)
  • Property deed: The signed property deed that certifies your purchase of the property or properties.
  • Proof of registration: The property or properties should already be registered in the Spanish property registry (Registro de la Propiedad)
  • Paid taxes: You’ll need to present proof that all taxes related to the property purchase have been successfully paid (post of interest: Property tax in Spain)
  • Criminal record certificate: Applicants must provide a criminal record certificate from their country of origin, as well as any other countries where they have lived for more than six months in the past five years.
  • Health insurance: You’ll need valid health insurance that covers yourself and your family while living in Spain. The insurance must meet certain minimum requirements, such as coverage for hospitalization.
  • Proof of financial means: You must be able to demonstrate that you have sufficient financial means to support yourself and your family while living in Spain. This may include bank statements, income tax returns, and other financial documentation.

It’s important to note that all documentation must be translated into Spanish and certified by a sworn translator. Additionally, all documentation must be apostilled or legalized, depending on the country of origin. Meeting the documentation requirements can be a complex and time-consuming process, so it’s important to work with a qualified attorney or advisor who can help guide you through the process.

Vorteile des spanischen Goldenen Visums

Benefits of the Spanish Golden visa

  • Validity: The Golden Visa is valid for an initial period of three years, after which it can be renewed for additional five-year periods as long as the applicant continues to hold the initial investment.
  • Permanent residency: After five years of continuous residency in Spain, Golden Visa holders can apply for permanent residency, which grants them the right to live and work in Spain indefinitely. It’s important to note that Golden Visa holders must spend at least six months per year in Spain to maintain their residency status.
  • Schengen zone travel: Spanish Golden Visa holders, may travel freely through most countries of the European Union.
  • Spanish work and residency permit: Through the Golden Visa you’ll be able to reside and also work in Spain. It even allows you to set up your own company.
  • Family: If you’re the main investor you’ll be able to include your partner and kids in the Visa application. You’ll all be able to move your family on just one Visa.
  • Physical presence not required: To apply for the Golden Visa in Spain, it is not necessary to be physically present. You can designate a representative who will gather all documentation in your name.

In addition, the validity of the Golden Visa is tied to the investment made by the applicant. For example, if the Golden Visa was obtained through a real estate investment, the applicant must maintain ownership of the property for the duration of their residency in Spain. If the property is sold, the Golden Visa may be revoked. Similarly, if the Golden Visa was obtained through business investment, the applicant must maintain their involvement in the business for the duration of their residency in Spain.

Overall, the Golden Visa provides a valuable opportunity for investors who wish to obtain residency in Spain and enjoy the benefits of living in a vibrant, culturally-rich country. It’s important to understand the requirements and limitations of the Golden Visa to make an informed decision and ensure a successful application.

Dauer Des Goldenen Visums In Spanien

Latest news about the Spanish Golden Visa

  • On May 7th, 2023, Iñigo Errejón launches his crusade against the Golden Visa in Spain.  According to him these types of Visa “increase real estate speculation”, “they don’t benefit the local economy”, “they drive away the local population” & ” they generally have a very bad effect on the Spanish housing market”
  • In a recent parliamentary response from the Government to Íñigo Errejón, the Government stated that there were 4,940 investor visas or ‘golden visas’ issued between 2013 and 2022. This figure includes not only visas granted for real estate investments but also for investments in capital and business projects.
  • On May 17th, 2023, the minister of Inclusion, Social security & migrations, José Luis Escrivá says that the government has been looking at the Golden Visa law for some time, but that this issue is currently not on their list of priorities.
  • On May 24th, 2023, Idealista.com the largest Spanish real estate portal publishes a comprehensive article where they release how many real estate purchases were made by foreigners in 2022. It’s less than 2% for Barcelona & Madrid!
  • On April 8th 2024, Pedro Sanchez, the prime minister of Spain, Announces they will start with the process of eliminating the Golden Visa.
golden visa in spain by investing in real estate

Our opinion

Taking into account that in December 2022, the current administration extended the initial Residence Authorization from 2-years to 3 years, plus following the latest news on the subject over the last months, we believed that the Spanish Golden Visa is here to stay. So it came as a big surprise when Pedro Sanchez announced in April of 2024 to have the Golden Visa removed.

The reality is: Spain benefits from the foreign cash influx. Also, the claims of opposing political, parties are simply not true.  

If less than 5000 Golden Visas were issued since the creation of the law in 2013, there is no chance that this scheme is affecting in any way the Spanish housing market. As idealista.com proved, foreign purchases are a very small percentage (less than 2% in mayor cities) of the total real estate transactions every year. Real estate purchases with the final aim of a Golden Visa are a fraction of that percentage.

So, once again, Spanish politicians try to influence the people, by manipulating the media with tabloid headlines.

We hope this article has been helpful. If you have any more questions or doubts just leave a comment below, or get in touch.

"The Spanish Golden Visa is here to stay!"

Frequently asked questions

The initial 500.000€ investment definitely needs to be paid out in cash.

You cannot use a mortgage for this initial amount. If on the other hand, you want to spend more, you can get financing for everything above 500k.

Post of interest: Mortgage in Spain (a guide)

No, the initial 500.000€ expenditure does not include closing costs and property tax.

In Barcelona, you should always add 12%-13% to the purchase price (this percentage varies in different regions of Spain).

For example: If you find a property at 500.000€ you’ll need to spend a total of 565.000€ (500.000€ purchase price + 65.000€ corresponding to 13% tax and closing costs).

Post of interest: Property tax in Spain (a starter guide)

Yes! You can purchase several different properties, as long as the total expense is above 500.000€. 

You could for example buy an apartment at 450.000€ and a parking spot for 50.000€.

Yes, you are definitely still eligible to apply for a Golden Visa, even if you bought your property some time ago.

As long as you’ve purchased your property after the law went into effect, October 2013, you should have no problem at all.

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