Every year, more and more non-Europeans are moving to Spain. And now that UK nationals are no longer part of the EU, the residency question looms for anyone looking to move to Spain in the future.
And although it is very possible to move to Spain as a non-EU citizen, you will have to qualify for a visa. There are 3 main visas that are most common; non-lucrative, student/work and a Spanish Golden Visa.
In this article we will discuss what a Spanish Golden Visa is, what qualifies for one and how it may be the best option for someone who is seriously looking to move to Spain.
What is a Spanish Golden Visa?
The Golden Visa in Spain is an investment visa for non-EU citizens. They can be obtained by making an investment in either property or business.
The minimum investment must be €500,000 in euros. That 500,000 must be liquid so a mortgage does not qualify.
The investment must be landed in Spain in either public bonds, stocks or in this case, property.
Benefits of The Golden Visa in Spain
The most common way to obtain the Golden Visa is by investing in property. The minimum amount of investment must be 500.000 euros. The visa gives you the possibility to reside in Spain completely free, whether it is for just 1 day a year, or all year round. In other words, the Golden Visa gives you the chance to travel through Europe and enjoy all the different cultures it has to offer.
When we are talking about Europe, we are talking about the Schengen area. This area includes most of the countries in the European Union, but also other countries such as Switzerland and Iceland. The Golden Visa allows you to travel to these countries with a residency card, which proves that you are a resident of Spain. In some countries there is a maximum of 3 to 6 months you can reside in the country before having to become a resident. However, these rules apply to all residents of the Schengen and EU citizens have to follow them as well.
Expert Advice on Spanish Golden Visas
Because of the sensitive nature of relocation and investments, a Javea Estate Agent, Villalux who have been established for 25 years recently broadcast a live webinar exploring the intricate details of the Spanish Golden Visa.
Romy Lagarde, working at Villalux, spoke to the immigration lawyers at Pellicer and Heredia. The basics for the Spanish Golden Visa were well defined and here they are:
To be able to apply for the golden visa, there are a few things you have to comply with:
- You can’t be a resident in Spain already
- You can’t be an EU citizen
- You can’t be living in Spain illegally at the moment of application
- You have to be older than 18 years old
- You can’t have any criminal records over the last 5 years
- You need to have sufficient money to live in Spain
- You have to invest a minimum amount of 500.000 euros in Spanish property or business
Looking For a Property in Spain?
If you qualify for all of this, you might start thinking: Where to look for a property?
There are a lot of different areas in Spain you can head out to. You can look for properties for sale in Javea, Denia, Moraira or other places on the Costa Blanca. But also the Malaga area on the Costa del Sol and cities such as Barcelona and Madrid are very popular. The type of property and area you choose are very personal, and it can be helpful to keep in mind what you would want to use the property for. Would you like to live in it yourself all year round, or are you planning to rent it out and use it as an investment? These factors will play a role in the decision you are going to make.
The best thing to do is to pick a real estate agency that speaks your language in the area that attracts you most, as real estate agents often collaborate and the one you pick can offer you almost any property available. Together with your agent you can decide what you need and find a property which meets your criteria.
The Application Process of The Golden Visa in Spain
Once you have found the property and agreed on the price, the moment has come to start talking to your solicitor. Your solicitor will ask for all the paperwork from the estate agency to set up the 10% contract or contrato de arras.
By this time you should have a Power of Attorney in place so your solicitor can start obtaining your Spanish tax number (NIE number). A bank account has to be opened to be able to make the money transfer of the purchase.
In about two months from this, you will sign the title deeds. When you have signed the title deeds you should start requesting the rest of the documents like your criminal record. The reason why is because from the moment of signing the title deeds, it will take about 2 to 2,5 months for the land registry to change the name of the owner of the property.
Only when this is all done you can request the certificate of ownership which you need together with all the rest of the documents to request the Golden Visa.
It is really important that at this moment all your requested documents are not older than 3 months, as they will become invalid after that period of time.
If you are going to obtain your Golden Visa by investing in property, it is always recommended to use the same solicitor to handle the purchase of the property, as well as the application for the Golden Visa. This way you can be sure that both processes will be coordinated the best way possible.
The Golden Visa is one of the easiest visas to obtain if you are able to invest and will give you a huge amount of freedom to travel through Europe. Once you have found a property and signed the title deeds, you have to start requesting all the documents needed. With this you can, together with the certificate of ownership, request the Golden Visa and become a resident of Spain and the EU.