Frequently asked questions about the Golden Visa of Spain

As a real estate agency we try to advise our clients. Here you have a description of the most frequently asked questions about the residence permit in Spanish with their answers.

What is a Spanish residence permit or ‘visa de oro’?
It is the Spanish law that aims to encourage foreign investors to invest in the country. It means that any foreign investor who meets the requirements and invests at least €500,000 in real estate is offered a quick and easy way to obtain a Spanish residence permit.

Is it permanent?
Yes, eventually. Permanent residence is a process that must be done step by step, although its process has been facilitated with the arrival of the new law. If you want to invest, the first step is to obtain a residence visa valid for a maximum of one year. After obtaining this, the second step is to apply for a residence permit for 2 years. The permit can be renewed every two years, as long as the investment is in force. If you have spent at least 6 months in Spain each year, after 5 years you can apply for a permanent residence of 5 years and after 10 years you can even apply for Spanish nationality.

When do I need it?
The ‘gold visa’ for Spain is aimed mainly at investors who do not belong to the European Union. If you live outside the European Union, a Spanish residence permit is a very easy way to obtain free travel rights within the EU and later in the Schengen area, without having to spend too many days actually residing in the country.

What are the main benefits?
Having a Spanish residence permit offers several benefits. Generally speaking, a great deal of bureaucracy is eliminated. Some of the important benefits for real estate owners are:
Entry into Spain and the other 26 countries of the European Union (Schengen area)
– You only have to come to Spain once a year to keep the permit, and yet you don’t have to stay for long periods.
– The permit can be easily renewed every two years.
– You have the right to work as an employer or employee once you have been granted 2 years’ leave.
– Your spouse and children under the age of 18 can apply for residency.

What about taxes?
When you buy real estate and obtain a Spanish residence permit, you will be subject to some form of tax. What and how much depends on how long you spend in Spain during the year. If you are in Spain for more than 6 months, you are considered a Spanish resident and your worldwide assets and income will be taxed in Spain. If you are in Spain for less than 6 months, you only pay taxes on the initial purchase of your property and then on the value of your assets in Spain.

Are there any requirements to obtain a Golden Visa?
As we indicated at the beginning of this post, if you wish to obtain the golden visa for Spain, you will first have to apply for a one-year Residence Visa by making any of the following investments:
– An investment of 500,000 euros in the Spanish real estate sector. It can be one or more properties of any type.
– An investment of one million euros in bank deposits in Spanish financial institutions.
– An investment of one million euros in shares of Spanish companies.
– An investment of two million euros in Spanish public debt.
– To carry out a business project in Spain of general interest, which creates employment, contributes to technological and/or scientific innovation or has a socio-economic impact in the local area.
After having obtained the residence visa for 1 year, you can re-apply for a 2 year residence permit. For this, there are the following requirements:
– The investment you made to obtain the residence visa must still be valid.
– You must have traveled at least once to Spain in the year prior to the application.

Where do I apply?
You can apply for initial visa residence at the Spanish Consulate in your country. You may do so yourself, but if you are unable to attend personally, you may sometimes apply through a representative, depending on the consulate.

What documents are required for a real estate investor visa?
To prove that you have invested €500,000 or more and complete the application for a Spanish residence permit, some documents are required. You must have:
– A presentation of the Land Registry (certificate) OR notarial deeds and proof that the deeds have been presented to the Land Registry.
– Passport valid for at least one more year.
– Two photographs of you
– Proof of financial solvency
– If your spouse applies: a marriage certificate
– If your children apply: birth certificates
– Proof of medical insurance valid in Spain.
– Proof that you do not have a criminal record.

How long does it take?
The residence permit for Spanish investors was designed to clear the way for non-EU investors. Therefore, obtaining the golden visa in Spain is done quite quickly. The residence of the visa will be decreed in 10 working days, after which you can immediately apply for a 2 year Spanish residence permit or wait until the 1 year visa expires to apply for it.
The application for a 2 year residence permit has to be presented at an Immigration Office in Madrid and the process takes 20 days.

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