Getting Residence Permit by Buying Property
Can I Get Residency in Spain If I Buy Property?
Yes, Spain has a special program named ‘Golden Visa’ that enables you to get a residence permit by purchasing a property valued at 500.000 Euros. (For details visit our page Golden Visa).
The Golden Visa program allows you to legally work and live in Spain when you buy Spanish real estate valued at a minimum of €500.000 (self-funded and paid in full).
And for those who don’t have half a million Euros to invest for the Golden Visa program, there’s still good news because you can purchase property in Spain for less (than €500.000) and apply for the “Non-Lucrative Visa” also known as the “Retirement Visa”. Buying a property in Spain, even the one that does not meet the Golden Visa criteria, would make the non-lucrative visa application and approval processes easier.
What is the Non-Lucrative Residence Permit?
This category of residence permit is one of the most popular paths to residency in Spain by non-EU/EEA/Swiss nationals. The non-lucrative residence permit is typically reserved for applicants who have no plans to work in Spain and are financially self-sufficient.
How Long is the Validity of the Non-Lucrative Residence Permit?
The non-lucrative residence permit is valid for one year and can be renewed for an additional two years, renewable twice. That is, the non-lucrative visa will allow you up to five years of residence in Spain (year 1 + 2 years + 2 years). At the end of this period, you will be able to get a long-term residence permit in Spain that gives you the opportunity to live in the country without renewing your permit again for 5 years. Finally, you will be allowed to apply for Spanish citizenship.
For the visa renewal, the same documentation and proof of funds are required. However, at the end of your first year, you can modify your application and apply for a work permit also (self-employed or employed).
General Requirements and Documentation:
The application process should start from the applicant’s country of residence. Below is a list of the documents you will need:
- A non-EU/EEA or Swiss Citizen.
- Over eighteen (18) years old.
- Passport validity: minimum one year.
- Copy of birth certificate.
- Spanish private health insurance, valid for one year.
- Medical certificate.
- Police clearance letter.
- Application form.
- Sufficient Funds. Proof of financial solvency and economic means to support your stay, including family, without the need to find local employment in Spain.
* When you are going to your appointment at your Consulate, you should bring the photocopies of the documents as well as the originals for verification.
What is the Definition of "Sufficient Funds"?
When applying for the Non-Lucrative visa you’ll need to prove that you have sufficient funds for the duration of your visa validity without relying upon access to public funding or financial support from the Spanish Government.
The minimum amount of sufficient funds necessary to apply for the Non-Lucrative Visa is defined according to Spain’s Multiplier for the Public Income Index (IPREM). IPREM is an index reference for the granting of economic aids, grants, allowances, unemployment benefits and minimum wage. The IPREM index was established in 2004 to replace the Minimum Wage as a reference. As such, IPREM determines the minimum amount of a person’s earnings. For Spain’s non-lucrative visa application, you should prove an amount of sufficient funds equivalent to 400% of the IPREM value.
A working example: the IPREM value for minimum earnings in 2019 is €538 per month. Annually, this equates to €6.456 Euros. As “sufficient funds” is defined as 400% value of IPREM, this requires proof of funds to the amount of €25.824 (i.e. 4x €6.456). Income may be derived from investments, annuities, sabbaticals and any other sources of income.
Of course, having a little bit more than this amount will make the approval easier. Note that the currency should be Euros or any other convertible currency.
If you are applying together with your family, you will need to prove sufficient funds to cover each member. The IPREM amount for each additional family member is 100%, equivalent to €6.456 annually. So, if you are applying for the non-lucrative visa for a family of four, the proof of funds required will be €45.192 per annum in total.
What are the Benefits of Non-Lucrative Visa?
- You will have a one-year residency with a chance to renew and to apply for long-term residency in future
- You can apply at the same time for your family members, i.e. your spouse and children under the age of 18
- You can continue your economic activities in other countries
- You can travel within the Schengen territory
- You can study or do an internship in Spain