Golden Visa in Greece – Legal Guide

01. What is a Golden Visa in Greece

In the context of a friendlier attitude towards interested foreign investors wishing to acquire real estate in Greece, the Greek Government institutionalized a procedure of flexible residency, that can be renewed every five (5) years, for property owners of a minimum value of €250,000 (already €400,000, based on the current legal amendments).

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02. General on Greek Residency Types

There are various categories of residency, as well as types of residence permits for each category.
Specific types of residence permit provide the holder with the right of access the job market, while others don’t.
Residence permits can be renewed, under specific requirements while under certain conditions they may establish a right to acquire Greek citizenship.

03. Golden Visa through Property Acquisition

The residence permit for property owners (Golden Visa) is a type of residency that concerns third-country nationals who have legally entered the country with any type of visa (C or D) or legally reside the country, even if the residence permit they hold does not permit amendment of purpose.
Golden Visa provides with a right of entry and a permanent residence permit of five (5) year duration.

04. Benefits

● Investors are allowed to lease the properties. However, short-term lease or sub-lease is not allowed based on legislation of April 2024.

● Golden Visa properties are not allowed to be registered as company address or branch, where the purpose of property upon acquisition changes to residential.

Permanent residence permit, which is required to be renewed every five (5) years for investors and family members (no requirement to reside in Greece).

Entrance into the EU (Schengen area).

● Citizenship is available after 7 years (under specific conditions).Golden Visa provides with a right of entry and a permanent residence permit of five (5) year duration, which is subject to renewal every five (5) years.

05. Requirements

● Acquisition in full ownership and possession of immovable property in Greece, of at least the minimum acquisition value.

● Co-ownership can be an option if the percentage of each merit meets the minimum investment value. An exception applies for husbands or civil partners.

● Acquisition in full ownership and possession of immovable property in Greece, in accordance with the minimum acquisition value, through a legal person established in Greece or in another member state of the European Union, the shares of which the investor owns in full.

● Has concluded a long-term complex tourist accommodation contract, or a tourist accommodation time-share contract, of an amount equal to the minimum investment value.

● Is an adult and has acquired in full ownership and possession, by inheritance or parental benefit, immovable property in Greece, of at least the minimum investment value.

For the region of Attica, the Regional Unit of Thessaloniki, the islands of Mykonos and Thira, and islands with more than 3,100 inhabitants, the minimum acquisition value or the total contractual rent is set at EUR 800,000. The investment in such a case concerns a single property. If it is an existent building or property for which a building permit has been issued, a minimum area of main premises of 120 sq.m. is required. Whereas, if the investment is made on indivisible co-ownership of property, the minimum value of the co-ownership merit is set at EUR 800,000.

For the other regions of the country, the minimum acquisition value, as well as the total contractual rent is set at 400,000 euros.The investment in such a case concerns a single property.If it is an existent building or property for which a building permit has been issued, aminimum area of main premises of 120 sq.m. is required.Whereas, if the investment is made on indivisible co-ownership of property, the minimum value of the co-ownership merit is set at EUR 400,000.

Especially in cases of investment through purchase of immovable property when the main areas change to a residence, the minimum value of the acquisition is set at EUR
250,000.The above also applies in cases of acquisition of property consisting of an industrial building or part of such or within which an industrial building is constructed, on condition that for at least the last 5 years no industry was established and operated there. The investment in such a case concerns a single property.If the investment is made on indivisible co-ownership of property, the minimum value of the co-ownership merit is set at EUR 250,000.

Especially in cases of investment through the purchase of immovable property consisting of a building or part of a preservable building under restoration or reconstruction or in which a preservable building is located, the minimum value of acquisition is set at EUR 250,000. The investment in such a case concerns a single property. If the investment is made on indivisible co-ownership of property, the minimum value of the co-ownership merit is set at EUR 250,000.

The previous thresholds for a property or a combination of properties, apply to Agreements where full price or a 10% advance payment will be made by 31st August 2024.In
such cases, the investor can complete the purchase by 31 December 2024 under the conditions of the previous scheme. If the purchase of the specified property is not completed, the investor may complete his investment in another property under the min. thresholds of the previous scheme, but in any case not after April 30, 2025.

For a single property at the regional units of the Northern, Central, and Southern sectors of Athens and the municipality of Vari-Voula-Vouliagmenis, the Municipality of Thessaloniki and the regional units of Mykonos and Santorini of the region of South Aegean the minimum value of the real estate at the time of its acquisition, as well as the total contractual rent of the hotel accommodation leases or tourist houses, is of EUR 500,000. If the investment is made on indivisible co-ownership of property, the minimum value of the co-ownership merit is set at EUR 500,000.

For properties or a combination of them in other regions of Greece the minimum value at acquisition, as well as the total contractual rent of a complex tourist accommodation contract, or a tourist accommodation time-share contract, is fixed at EUR 250,000.

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