Out of all investment programs around the world, the Golden Visa Portugal scheme is one of the most popular. Launched in 2012, thousands of non-EU nationalities around the world have used it to gain residency rights for themselves and their family.
Stats released in 2018 shows the golden visa program’s soaring popularity, and this fame looks set to continue. For that year, 1260 people applied to the program, and since its launch, it has generated 4.2 billion euros.
Applicants must spend seven days a year in Portugal, making this an attractive option for those still living in their home country. Other criteria are a clean criminal record, able to speak Portuguese and registering with local tax authorities. Overall, with a 90-day timeframe for approval and just 60 days for renewal, the appeal is undeniable.
However, there is more. Portugal is part of the Schengen zone so golden visa holders can travel throughout 26 countries, and should they go onto to apply for citizenship, they gain full EU rights to live, and work anywhere within that zone.
Although other investment options exist, the most popular choice is to purchase Portuguese real estate, which accounts for 92% of applications. Like many other countries around the globe, Portugal suffered during the 2008 crisis, and house values plunged to an all-time low.
Although the market has rebounded, prices are still 15% lower than their peak value. Combine this with expert long term growth predictions for an ideal capital appreciation investment, and if desired, a buy-to-let income.
To manage the influx of property buyers, Portugal designed two investment levels.
The first category 65A-C requires 500,000 euros investment, and applicants can choose from off-plan, new-build or resale homes anywhere throughout Portugal.
However, category 65 A-D, introduced in 2015, only requires 350,000 euros providing you buy a home over 30 years old, or in a designated rehabilitation area. If the house needs extensive renovation, you must adhere to the strict laws governing this but can include those costs in the overall investment amount.
This solution benefits everyone because local communities also benefit from the investment and preserve their cultural heritage through old architecture styles.
Sitting on the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal’s ideal weather all year round combines with sandy beaches, a delicious national cuisine, and a unique culture to become a popular tourist and expat destination.
Let’s not forget world-class golf courses, but aside from that, there is plenty to see and do. While tourism happens countrywide, Lisbon is the king of Portugal’s foreign property sales market.
Districts within it include….
Liberdade: The upmarket Avenida da Liberdade district is Lisbon’s darling and where everyone wants to live. Often compared to Paris’s Champs Elysees, designer shops, roadside cafes and a modern atmosphere sit among 19th-century art nouveau buildings, a unique feature of Portugal’s real estate market.
Santos: Creative vibes and inspirations entice artisans to set up home in Santos. As an old district, homeowners enjoy a certain sense of nostalgia but when combined with today’s trendy influences, ignoring the appeal is hard.
Chiado: Commerce, historic culture and fashion make Chiado, but it is also Portugal’s book worm corner with many publishing houses. The diversity of new architecture combined with designer boutiques, art galleries and book shops makes residents feel right at home.
Comparta: Ah Comparta and its beautiful beaches often rank as one of Portugal’s most beautiful places. Combined with the nearby nature reserve, the slow-paced lifestyle makes an ideal alternative to Lisbon’s busy city centres.
Baixa: As a top trendy, touristic district, Baixa is also the heart of Lisbon’s commercial industry. Naturally, wherever there is tourism, souvenir shops, and copious amounts of restaurants bring life to another level.
Belem: Upmarket Belem, a popular city break destination, has plenty to see and do including museums, historic architecture, monuments and the famous Estuary gardens and boat tours. Sitting just 5 kilometres from Baixa, many people adore the area.
Alfama: Its claim to fame is around the old port and docks, yet Alfama has a lot more to offer including the artisan district, and authentic Portuguese vibes as seen in narrow-cobbled streets and cute, white houses.
Bairro Alto: Buzzing Bairro Alto is all about warm summer evenings, live entertainment, copious amounts of restaurants, and just having a good time. The central Largo do Carmo area is also one of Lisbon’s attractive squares boasting of baroque architecture and historical monuments.
Apply either as an individual or company. As well as spending at least seven days a year in the country; you need to keep your investment for five years.
Submit the application form online alongside supporting documents like a fiscal number and local bank account, and upon approval, attend an interview. Most applicants use lawyers to handle the whole process because you will also submit your family members’ applications.
Apply for renewal after year one, and the authorities will update their records like checking your criminal history. In year 2, the card becomes valid for two years, and this routine continues until year 5 when you can apply for permanent residency, then citizenship.
We suggest hiring a lawyer for the application process. While it would be cheaper to do it yourself, handing it over to the experts is advisable. Not only to make sure everything is in order but also to prevent delays, should your application not be enough.
When buying a property in Portugal, you need to use a Portuguese bank account to prove your investment. Opening one is simple, but you need a NIF number. If a lawyer is handling your application, they can assist you in gaining one. You will need a tax number when buying a property and non-Portuguese documents need to be translated and notarized.
Further Information: If you are looking to invest in Golden Visa Portugal and would like to speak to a local sales representative about choosing real estate for your application, call us, or use the contact enquiry form to send a message.
Property in Portugal: See apartments and villas for sale in Portugal. Each listing includes photos, area information and property description. To find out more about any home, use the enquiry form to receive details via email.
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