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Greece Golden Visa Program Updates: Investment Options And Benefits

4 min read

Greece Golden Visa Program Updates: Investment Options And Benefits

Greece has just raised the bar to get its Golden Visa. Acquiring residencies and citizenships is getting more difficult by the day. Governments around the world are adapting their immigration programs to cater to the demands of organizations such as the EU.

For example, St Kitts and Nevis recently doubled the investment requirement to get citizenship, and Portugal is considering eliminating its golden visa program. The harsh reality is that getting global mobility is not as easy as it was, and all these events serve as a valuable reminder of how important it is to act quickly before barriers go up. 

Greece's golden visa is undoubtedly one of the most enticing in Europe, but it has undergone some recent changes, which went into effect on July 31, 2023. It has been around since 2013, offering a residency-by-investment opportunity for non-EU citizens. The program allows for various investment options, with real estate being the most popular choice among investors. 

This article delves into the Greece Golden Visa program, its benefits, and its recent changes.

 

Keep track of all the changes you've had in the Greece Golden Visa program, because this could be your chance to meet the beautiful Mykonos

Keep track of all the changes you've had in the Greece Golden Visa program, because this could be your chance to meet the beautiful Mykonos

THE RECENT CHANGE TO THE GREECE GOLDEN VISA PROGRAM: REAL ESTATE

According to Greek prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, these changes are intended to make real estate prices more affordable for Greeks. The program so far has experienced massive success as many citizens from multiple parts of the world have invested in the country. 

As you can imagine, the government wanted to increase the number of applications before prices increased. Before July 31, 2023, the real estate investment required was €250,000 ($273,037 USD) or more, but now it’s €500,000 ($546,075 USD) in Athens, Thessaloniki, Santorini and Mykonos. The upside is that the €250,000 ($273,037 USD) investment threshold stays the same in the rest of Greece.  

It’s important to note that those investors who already deposited 10% of the total property value before the 31 of July 2023 and are purchasing property in those four areas can still benefit from the €250,000 scheme. However, they must completely purchase the property before 2023 ends. 

Unlike the previous arrangement, which required obtaining the Power of Attorney (POA) for the Golden Visa application from a consulate, investors now have the option to have the POA notarized by a foreign Notary in their home country. This is permissible provided that the POA bears an Apostille Stamp or is authorized by the relevant Greek Consulate.

 

Mykonos is an amazing place to live and invest, because the investors now can opt to have the POA notarized by a foreign Notary in their home country

Mykonos is an amazing place to live and invest, because the investors now can opt to have the POA notarized by a foreign Notary in their home country

OTHER INVESTMENTS 

The new real estate requirement makes getting this visa more difficult, but if you’re not willing to go down that route, here are the alternatives:

  • Enter into a lease agreement with a hotel or tourist establishment for a minimum duration of 10 years;

  • Invest a capital of no less than €400,000 ($436,860 USD) in a company that is duly registered in Greece;

  • Allocate a sum of €400,000 ($436,860 USD) for investment in Greek government bonds;

  • Invest €400,000 ($436,860 USD)  in bonds or shares of real estate investment companies;

  • Place a deposit of €400,000 ($436,860 USD) in a Greek bank;

  • Undertake an investment of €800,000 ($873,720 USD) in corporate or government bonds.

 

You can optimize your taxes if you have the Greece Golden Visa and enjoy amazing places like Delphi

You can optimize your taxes if you have the Greece Golden Visa and enjoy amazing places like Delphi

BENEFITS OF THIS VISA 

The Greece Golden Visa is more than a pathway to residency as it offers various perks for investors. Whether it’s ease of travel, tax benefits or investment opportunities, the program has a lot in store. Here’s a closer look at the advantages of this visa:

  • Multiple Investment Options: The program caters to a wide range of investment preferences, from real estate to capital investments, government bonds and more. You can select an investment that aligns with your financial goals and risk tolerance;

  • Seamless Travel Access: You can travel visa-free to all Schengen countries and the EU nations of Romania, Cyprus and Croatia for 90 days every 6 months;

  • Tax Optimization: Instead of facing up to 45% taxation on your global income, you can opt for a flat tax of €100,000 ($109,215 USD) regardless of your earnings. An additional €20,000 ($21,843 USD) is added per additional family member;

  • Family-friendly Residency: Your relatives can also benefit from the program, facilitating a cohesive experience for families;

  • Path to Permanent Residence: Investors have the option to transition from a temporary residence to a permanent residency, creating a stable and long-term footing in Greece;

  • Potential Citizenship: The Greece Golden Visa program isn't just a residency solution; it offers a potential pathway to citizenship. You must reside for seven years, pass a Greek language and culture exam, and pay a fee of €700 ($764,5 USD). Note that the Greek passport is the 6th strongest in the world and allows for dual citizenship;

  • Property Rental Opportunities: You can rent their acquired property, potentially generating rental income and maximizing the returns on your investment;

  • Corporate Connections: The program extends to business realms too. Holding shares in local companies offers you an avenue to diversify your investment portfolio and explore promising business opportunities;

  • Access to Essential Services: You can access local healthcare and education facilities.

 

Assos Vilage, in Kefalonia, is looks like a paradise to relax with your family and friends in Greece

Assos Village, in Kefalonia, is looks like a paradise to relax with your family and friends in Greece

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

To qualify for the Greece Golden Visa program, you must fulfill the following criteria:

  • Non-citizenship status in the EU or European Economic Area (EEA);

  • Attainment of at least 18 years of age;

  • Absence of any criminal record;

  • Demonstrable good character;

  • Possession of health insurance for yourself and your family members.

 

BONUS: ADVANTAGES OF RESIDING IN GREECE

  • Affordable Living Expenses: Greece offers a cost-effective lifestyle compared to other EU nations;

  • Enchanting Climate: Greece's gentle Mediterranean climate is renowned, characterized by sunny, warm summers and relatively mild, rainy winters;

  • Rich Natural Beauty and Cultural Legacy: Drawing significant tourist attention, Greece welcomed over 34.2 million visitors in 2019. Its global recognition stems from iconic historical sites like the Acropolis of Athens and Ancient Delphi. Beyond its cultural heritage, Greece boasts picturesque natural wonders, including mountainous islands and inviting sandy coastlines.

 

Lefkada, Greece

Lefkada, Greece

CONCLUSION

Greece has doubled the real estate investment requirement in its four highly demanded areas, making it more difficult to get its Golden Visa. The recent adjustments to the program, while aimed at benefiting locals, have prompted investors involved in the former €250,000 ($272,297 USD) scheme to act quickly before prices doubled.

This program offers various benefits, including potential citizenship and residency in this beautiful country. 

There are other ways to get the golden visa, such as investing in a real estate property outside the four areas of Athens, Thessaloniki, Santorini and Mykonos. Still, these changes showcase an undeniable trend in the world: gaining global mobility is more difficult than ever before. If you realize the importance of this and want to do something about it, click here to learn more about our second residency and citizenship services. 

 


WORK WITH ME

I help my clients to move offshore for freedom, privacy and autonomy by focusing on the immigration, legal, and tax issues that you will face when becoming an expat. If you would like to work one-on-one with me on getting out of your home country (or setting up a Plan-B location), then read this important letter and fill in an application form to become a Private Client. My fees are not cheap; however, I can assure you that when you work with a professional firm like ours, the results will be worth it.

 

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Mikkel Thorup

Written by Mikkel Thorup

Mikkel Thorup is the world’s most sought-after expat consultant. He focuses on helping high-net-worth private clients to legally mitigate tax liabilities, obtain a second residency and citizenship, and assemble a portfolio of foreign investments including international real estate, timber plantations, agricultural land and other hard-money tangible assets. Mikkel is the Founder and CEO at Expat Money®, a private consulting firm started in 2017. He hosts the popular weekly podcast, the Expat Money Show, and wrote the definitive #1-Best Selling book Expat Secrets - How To Pay Zero Taxes, Live Overseas And Make Giant Piles Of Money, and his second book: Expats Guide On Moving To Mexico.

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