Greece Golden Visa & Citizenship by Investment

Greece is one of the most attractive places in the Mediterranean. The country has a rich history, many natural and man-made attractions, a high standard of living, and a fairly low crime rate. In addition, in support of the state’s economy, the government offers wealthy foreigners to obtain a residence permit for investment – Greece Golden Visa.
In this article, we will take a closer look at the program and everything you need to know for those wishing to obtain documents for a long-term residency permit or citizenship.
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Residence by Investment

Greece residency by investment is one of the most popular and fastest ways to get an opportunity to live in the European Union. The applicant does not have to reside in the country for a certain time. The advantage of this program is that an investor can obtain a residence permit for themselves and their family (spouse, children, parents).

Greece Golden Visa Program

The Greece Golden Visa program was launched in 2013 to provide wealthy depositors with a residence permit and thus stimulate financial investment in the country’s economy.
The Greek Golden Visa holder automatically receives a five-year residence permit. At the end of this period, the residence permit can be extended for another 5 years. The main condition for the continuation of the visa is real estate ownership.
Important. If, within 5 years, you have sold your property and have not purchased a new one, you lose the opportunity to renew your visa.
Greece is one of the few countries that offers a residence permit without the minimum residency requirement. In addition, the application process for the Golden Visa is quite simple and fast. Having a residence permit and following certain rules, an investor can apply for Greek citizenship.
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Requirements for the Golden Visa

To receive the Greece Golden Visa, the candidate must meet the following requirements:
  • be a non-EU/EEA country citizen;
  • be a minimum of 18 years old;
  • have a clean criminal record;
  • hold valid medical insurance for each
  • participant of the program;
  • provide evidence of good character.
If you meet all these criteria, you can start looking for a suitable property and begin obtaining the Greek Golden Visa. You will need to gather the following package of documents additionally:
  • application form, which must be filled out;
  • good quality photo 3×4;
  • original passport and a copy of it;
  • proof of payment of necessary state fees;
  • medical insurance for you and your family (if you apply for a residence permit for yourself and your relatives);
  • documents confirming the payment of your respective investments;
  • a bank statement to confirm your solvency.
Please note. Documents that confirm your investment in real estate must be:
  • translated into Greek;
  • notarized;
  • obtain an apostille for each.

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Real estate investment

It is necessary to buy or invest 500,000 euros in any estate. It can be located either on the mainland or on the Greek islands. Commercial and residential buildings, hotels, production plants, etc., are suitable for investment.
If you want to buy or invest in several buildings at once, make sure that their total value will equal or exceed 500,000 euros.
Important. Currently, the amount of investment for residency is 250,000 euros. But from August 1 2023, the amount of investment in some regions increases to 500,000 euros. It refers to Athens, Thessaloniki municipality, Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni municipality, and the Mykonos and Santorini island regions.

Financial assets

The Greece Golden Visa is also available to those who have made such a purchase:
  • shares and/or corporate bonds with a minimum value of 800,000 euros, which may be tendered;
  • government bonds with a minimum value of €400,000;
  • units and/or shares in investment funds registered in Greece, up to a value of €400,000.

Business investments

You can also obtain a residence permit by contributing to a Greek business. For example, you can purchase units and/or shares of investment funds from Greece or another EU country for a minimum of €400,000. Only provided that these companies plan to invest exclusively in Greek real estate.
A deposit of €400,000 in any credit institution registered in Greece is also allowed. Obligatory for a term of one year or more with the condition of permanent prolongation.
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Benefits of the Golden Visa

Greek Golden Visa provides ample opportunities for holders:
  • unlimited stay in Greece;
  • visa-free travel to more than 170 countries of the world;
  • free entry to the states of the Schengen Zone;
  • doing business in Greece and other EU countries;
  • access to prestigious educational institutions for children of investors;
  • access to reliable European banks;
  • access to the best clinics and health institutions in the EU.
All these benefits await not only the principal recipient of the Golden Visa in Greece but also their family. It takes 60 days from the date of application to process documents. Thus, in just 2-3 months, you get access to all the benefits of a democratic and economically developed European country.

The process of applying for residence by investment

In general, the process of applying for a Greece Golden Visa is quite simple. It consists of several steps:
  1. Complete and submit the application.
  2. Complete the investment process by arriving in Greece or hiring a law firm for remote processing.
  3. Collect the package of documents according to the requirements of the Greek program.
  4. Send the documents to the nearest Foreigners Department or through a lawyer.
  5. Receive the answer within 3 months from the date of submission.
  6. Submit biometric data and wait for the answer.
  7. Receive Golden Visa in Greece.
Foreign citizens can apply in two formats: in person and completely remotely. The latter option is increasingly gaining popularity among investors, as it has a number of advantages:
  • There is no need to plan a visit to Greece.
  • You can sign a power of attorney without leaving the office.
  • You avoid flight and accommodation expenses.
  • The documents are processed in just a few days.

Get a Greek Golden Visa with Fintech Harbor

You can get the Greek Golden Visa remotely and prepare the necessary documents with the help of Fintech Harbour’s qualified experts.
We provide:
  • advice on drafting powers of attorney;
  • assistance in choosing the right property;
  • apostille and notary attestation services;
  • advice on all options for obtaining a residence permit or Greek citizenship.
Our experienced lawyers are always available to answer all your questions. We will organize for you a simple and fast process of obtaining a permanent residence permit for investment or Greek citizenship.

Greece Citizenship by Investment

Technically, it is not possible to become a Greek citizen simply by investing directly in real estate or business. This term implies permanent residence, which becomes the basis for a Greek passport.
To begin the process of acquiring Greek citizenship by investment, you need to meet several requirements.

Requirements for obtaining Greek citizenship by investment

The application becomes available to Greek Golden Visa holders who:
  • have held a residence permit for more than 7 years;
  • have been a tax resident of the country for all or more than 7 years;
  • have been in Greece for at least 183 days each year for the entire period since the issuance of the residence permit.
By meeting all of these requirements, you can begin to prepare for the citizenship process.

Application process

For immigrants and foreign investors with a residence permit who want to get a Greek passport, it is necessary to collect the following documents:
  • ID card issued in the home state;
  • Golden Visa (or another type of residence permit);
  • tax number issued in Greece;
  • bank statement;
  • criminal record certificate;
  • document confirming the payment of the registration fee.
After completing the application and submitting all the necessary papers, a candidate for Greek citizenship must pass the state exam. The passing score on this test is 80% or higher. Then the competent authorities will review your application. The waiting time for the answer depends on the individual circumstances of the candidate so it can vary from 1 year to 4 years.

Benefits of the Golden Visa

The popularity of Greek citizenship is determined by favourable conditions for its acquisition and additional opportunities for new residents of Greece. Let’s look at the key advantages:
  • No extra fees. The Greece Golden Visa provides no donations or surcharges except for investments. Thus, you have full ownership of the estate purchased here.
  • Living in other EU countries. By acquiring citizenship, you automatically become an EU citizen. That is, you can legally reside in any country in the European Union.
  • Vast travel opportunities. In addition to the 28 EU states, you can also freely visit Switzerland, Iceland, and Norway.
  • Citizenship for the entire family. When the applicant becomes a Greek passport holder, their relatives (spouse, children under 18, parents of the main applicant and spouse) can also get citizenship. The parents of the main beneficiary can also be added to the application.
  • High standard of living. You can access the best medical and educational facilities, social benefits, and other services available to EU residents.

Obtaining Greek Citizenship by Investment

As we discovered, it is impossible to become a Greek passport holder directly for investment. Only the Greece Golden Visa program can provide a basis for this. It is the most reliable and easiest way to get the right to apply for citizenship.
Consider other options for becoming a resident of the country:
  • by descent, if one of the parents is a Greek citizen;
  • by marriage to a Greek citizen;
  • by naturalization.
These options do not suit everyone. That is why the Greek Golden Visa has become the most acceptable and affordable way for wealthy foreigners to subsequently acquire citizenship.

Greek Taxes

When planning to use the Greek Golden Visa program, read the list of taxes you must pay:
  • variable real estate tax, which depends on the amount of the purchase;
  • a progressive income tax which is calculated based on your monthly income;
  • tax on income earned abroad if you live in Greece for more than six months (calculated similarly to the previous one);
  • capital gains tax applies to dividends, interest, and rental property.
Note that Greece has a double taxation treaty with many countries. Therefore, we recommend finding out if this agreement has been established with your home country.
Important. There are several programs in Greece to provide benefits to tax residents who are not residents in the country itself. Provided that you receive your income from businesses and other sources directly in Greece, you need to hire a tax representative to file your returns with the Tax Authorities.
The taxation system of another country is always a complicated issue, especially for beginners. In order to understand the calculations and correctly draw up reports for tax authorities, it is recommended to consult with our specialists. We will help you to solve any legal questions on receiving a residence permit and Greek citizenship.

FAQ

Despite the exhaustive information in the material, we have prepared several detailed answers to common questions that readers may have.
You must invest at least €250,000 in real estate in Greece. Or at least €400,000 to purchase government or corporate stocks/bonds.
Yes, you can get a residence permit in Greece if the value of the house is equal to or greater than €250,000 or €500,000 in some regions.

Available options are:

  • Investing at least €250,000 in real estate on the Greek mainland or its islands.
  • Investing at least €400,000 in Greek government bonds
  • Investing at least €400,000 in either a real estate investment company or in a close-ended investment company.
  • Investing at least €400,000 in securities or bank deposits.
  • Investing at least €800,000 in shares or corporate bonds or Greek treasury bonds.
Yes, family members can also receive Golden Visa in Greece. Immigration in this way is available to close relatives: spouses, children under 18 years old, parents of the main applicant and spouse.
You first need to apply for the Greece Golden Visa by investing in real estate or purchasing government, corporate bonds, or investment fund shares. Then, after 7 years, you can apply for Greek citizenship.
Greece Golden Visa provides wealthy investors with a residence permit for 5 years with the possibility of permanent renewal. The concept of “citizenship for investment” exists only figuratively, as physically, it is impossible to obtain a Greek passport by investing a certain amount in the country’s economy. An investor acquires the right to it only after 7 years of receiving the residence permit.
Consultation
Please provide the date and time to contact you (according to your local time)
*Your contact information will be used for our inner purposes and only with the aim to provide you with the best business solutions.