The Golden Visa for Greece is one of the most popular investment visa programs in the EU. It is a residence-by-investment visa, issued to non-EU citizens who make a significant contribution to the Greek economy. There are several investment options, but the most common route is through purchasing real estate worth at least a quarter of a million.
Golden Visas issued by the EU Member States such as Greece are especially coveted, as they may eventually lead to citizenship and thus access to the EU.
The Greece Golden Visa offers immediate five-year residency to the investor as well as their immediate family members, as well as free travel in the Schengen Zone.
Investment Options for the Golden Visa for Greece
To qualify for a Golden Visa for Greece, you must make one of the following investments:
• Purchase a real estate property worth at least €500,000
• Sign a lease agreement with a hotel or tourist establishment for at least 10 years
• Make a capital investment of at least €400,000 in a company registered in Greece
• Make a €400,000 investment in Greek government bonds.
• Make a €400,000 investment in bonds or shares of real estate investment companies.
• Make a €400,000 deposit in a Greek bank.
• Make an €800,000 investment in corporate or government bonds.
Although, in most cases, you should be in Greece to finalize your investment, you may also do it remotely, if you give Power of Attorney to a legal representative.
Considering the funds involved, most applicants will obtain legal help during the process. Companies like La Vida – Golden Visas have a range of experts who offer consultations and assistance on international investment, immigration, and real estate. They can also handle the process of investment in Greece on your behalf.
Who Is Eligible for a Greece Golden Visa?
Eligibility criteria for a Greek Golden Visa are:
• You must be over the age of 18.
• You must not have any history of criminal records, in any country in which you have lived.
• You must make a significant investment in Greece (see the investment options below).
• You must have obtained health insurance from a company operating in Greece.
You can consult with the experts at La Vida – Golden Visas for free to determine whether you are eligible for the Greek Golden Visa Scheme. If you are, they can help you with the investment procurement as well as the Greek visa application process.
Benefits of the Greek Golden Visa
A Greek Golden Visa is one of the most competitive Golden Visas in the EU and is accompanied by the following benefits:
• The threshold investment options are relatively lower than in most other EU countries with Golden Visa routes.
• You can extend the visa to include your family members, like your spouse, (unmarried) children under 21 years of age, and dependent parents of either yourself or your spouse. If your child is over the age of 21, but no older than 24, and they are a student, they may also be included in the Golden Visa application.
• You and your family members will enjoy visa-free travel to the Schengen Zone.
• There are no requirements to live in Greece for any duration in order to renew the residence permit.
• You can choose to rent out your property after purchase.
• You can apply for Greek citizenship after seven years of residence. Greece is an EU Member State, so you would have access to the EU free market and visa-free travel to more than a hundred countries.
• You can live and invest in Greece.
• You have access to Greek education and healthcare
Duration of a Greece Golden Visa
The Golden Visa for Greece is issued for five years and can be renewed indefinitely as long as you maintain the investment.
If you ultimately choose to live in Greece, then after seven years of continuous residence, you can also apply for Greek citizenship.
How Long Do You Need to Live in Greece to Renew the Golden Visa?
Unlike most other countries that issue Golden Visas, you do not need to live in Greece at all in order to renew the residence permit. You can keep renewing it every five years, as long as you maintain your investment.
To renew the residence permit, you must provide proof that the real estate property is still in your ownership or a solemn declaration by the relevant representatives that the investment is still ongoing.
Can You Get Greece Citizenship by Investment?
Yes, you can become a Greek citizen by investing in Greece and obtaining a Golden Visa. However, unlike residency, you cannot apply for Greek citizenship without actually living there and paying taxes. You must live in Greece for at least seven years before being eligible to apply for citizenship.
In addition, you must also be able to prove you have ties to the country and knowledge of the Greek language and culture, at least on a basic level.
How to Apply for a Greece Golden Visa?
You must apply for a Greek Golden Visa at the Alien and Immigration Department at the Decentralised Authority in Greece. Before that, you must apply for an entry visa at one of the Greek Embassies or Consulates abroad. An outline of the Golden Visa application process is:
• Apply for a Greek national visa at an Embassy or Consulate.
• Enter Greece and finalize your investment. It is your choice whether you decide to hire professional legal help through this step.
• Collect the required documents for the Greek Golden Visa.
• Submit the documents to the local Alien and Immigration Department.
• Wait for the visa to be processed. You will usually hear back about a decision within 3 months.
• If the decision is positive, you must travel back to Greece and submit your biometric information.
• You will receive a Golden Visa residence permit, which will be valid for five years.
The experts at La Vida – Golden Visas can help you arrange your trip to Greece, will guide you through the investment process, accompany you as you visit properties, meet with lawyers and government officials, and finally, apply for the Greek Golden Visa.
What Documents are Required to Apply for a Greece Golden Visa?
The required documents when applying for a Greece Golden Visa are:
• Application form.
• Recent, passport-size pictures of yourself. Make sure they follow Greek visa photo requirements.
• Your valid passport along with a copy. The passport must include the entry visa as required.
• Proof of having paid the relevant government fees.
• Proof of obtaining health insurance in Greece for yourself and any family members.
• Proof of your funds.
• Additional documents according to the type of investment you make, such as:
• For purchasing real estate:
• A contract of purchase that attests to the fact that there are no conditions or exemptions in the purchase, states the total price of the purchase, and the method of payment (it must be in full, via credit held in an institution operating in Greece or via a credit transfer.
• Proof of transfer of the contract by the accountable Land Registry
• Certificate issued by the Land Registry proving there has been no impediment related to the purchase.
• For renting a hotel or tourist establishment:
• i) Timeshare contract for a minimum period of five years which should state the
• corresponding price per year;
• ii) Proof of transfer registration issued by the competent Land Registry;
• iii) A certificate issued by the National Tourism Organisation (EOT) that it has
• been informed of the conclusion of the particular timeshare contract.
• For investment in a company:
• Documents with details of the company receiving the investment, whether it is established or to be established (must include name, type of legal entity, and share-holders)
• A document detailing the investment project
• The location of the investment project
• The budget and financing structure for the investment
• A timeline detailing the implementation of the investment
• Predictions for the results on the first five years of investment (feasibility study and cash flow forecast)
• A document detailing the number of jobs that will be created by the investment
• A short CV
• Your position in the investment project
• Any other documents requested by the relevant authorities.
• The documents you submit must be translated into Greek by either the Translation Service of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Athens, Greece, or by an attorney who is part of a Greek bar association.
• The documents you submit must be certified either by an Apostille Stamp (if your country is part of the Hague Convention) or by the nearest Greek Embassy or Consulate (if your country is not part of the Hague Convention).
Note: Before you apply for the Golden Visa, check if you do also need to apply for a Greek Schengen Visa to enter the country. This application will require a different set of documents, such as:
• Travel medical insurance with a minimum 30,000 € coverage within Greece and the entire Schengen area
• A cover letter stating the purpose of visit to Greece and itinerary
• Flight Itinerary with dates and flight numbers specifying entry and exit from Greece
• Proof of accommodation in Greece for the entire duration of your stay.
• Proof of sufficient financial means for the period of stay in Greece.