Golden Visa Crackdown: Spain Passed A Bill To End Golden Visa By Real Estate

Golden Visa Crackdown: Spain Passed A Bill To End Golden Visa By Real Estate

A new law that has been introduced to Congress could lead to the revocation of Spain's Golden Visa, which could have an impact on thousands of foreign investors in real estate.

The Residence by Investment scheme introduced in 2013 allows third-country nationals to obtain a Spanish residence permit that can lead to permanent residency or even Spanish citizenship by purchasing real estate worth at least €500,000 in the country.

The controversy in Spain around the golden visa has been growing and a bill has been submitted to congress to scrap the Golden Visa by purchase of property.

Several Spanish lawmakers think that this kind of investment has increased home prices, making it more difficult for locals to buy their own homes. And, EU officials have pointed to the potential risk of tax evasion and money laundering by international buyers.

The Spanish bill aims to see the Golden Visa Scheme limited to foreign buyers who present a business proposition that will create jobs or innovation that will help Spain’s economy grow.

In contrast, individuals who simply buy a house don't create any jobs or help the economy; instead, they only actually increase inflation.

Spain’s Golden Visa Program

Around a billion euros are brought to Spain annually on average via the golden visa program.

Aside from Residence by Investment, another way to obtain a Golden Visa in Spain is by making a capital investment of at least €1 million.

The investment can take the form of a deposit in a Spanish bank, a purchase of shares in a Spanish company, or an investment in a Spanish government bond. The investment must be made through a Spanish financial institution or through a foreign financial institution that is authorised to operate in Spain. 

After five years of holding the investment, the Golden Visa can be renewed for an additional five years.

Golden Visa holders are not required to reside in Spain for a minimum period each year, but they must visit the country at least once every two years to maintain their residency status.

How Will This Bill Affect Future Investors

According to reports, Spain’s Golden Visa program remains among the most favourite in Europe for foreign investors.

The golden visa scheme brings an average of over 1 billion euros a year to Spain. Any changes to this programme would affect the Spanish economy significantly more than any other EU country. 

The bill demonstrates that Spanish lawmakers would prefer to restrict the program rather than outright ban it. However, with the upcoming changes now might be the perfect time to submit your application if you are considering using the golden visa scheme to live in Spain in the near future.

Do you have plans to move to Spain? Talk to us in the comment section below. Or if you need more advice on the above, contact us for further travel & immigration advice.

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