The ever-popular Portugal Golden Visa — one of the most successful residency-by-investment programs in the world — has undergone key changes from 1 January this year.
While these new rules have come into play, where you can no longer invest in residential property in the hotspots of the country such as Lisbon, Porto, and much of the Algarve, the fundamentals of the program remain much the same.
So, fear not, as there remain several exceptionally beautiful areas that are still eligible, such as the autonomous islands of Madeira and Azores, Peneda-Gerês, the Douro Valley, and the Alentejo. What’s more, some parts of the Algarve will also remain viable investments, such as Aljezur, Odeceixe, and Sagres. Alongside this, if the area is also considered a “low-density” area, then a 20% discount will still apply.
To keep you up to date with the latest changes to the Golden Visa Program, our partner’s Global Citizen Solutions and Goldcrest would like to invite you to their Webinar on the Golden Visa changes for 2022, which will take place on 7 March 2022, at 18:00 pm GMT (Lisbon time).
What is the Portugal Golden Visa?
Since kicking off in 2012, the program has enabled thousands of families to settle in Portugal, and has, in turn, boosted the Portuguese economy. One of the major attractions of the program is that it provides investors with an entryway to Europe, providing family members with the right to live, work, and study in Portugal and enjoy free movement in Europe’s Schengen Area.
Key Golden Visa changes that you should be aware of
We know the changes can be confusing, so in a nutshell, the three key changes are:
- No more residential investments in busy cities
If you were looking to purchase residential property in Lisbon, Porto, and many coastal areas, this is now no longer possible. The thought process behind this was to instigate developments in the interior of the country. While your hopes of snapping up a new home in Lisbon under the scheme will no longer be feasible, commercial real estate remains an open option to you. Furthermore, the interior of Portugal provides undiscovered gems, and could prove to be the dream home that you were looking for!
2. New interior areas classification system
The Portuguese government has created a new “interior area” category to aid investors in discovering where they are able to qualify for residential property investment. From the north to the south of Portugal, many places would make outstanding homes, and some areas are expected to become tourist locations in the coming years, given their high growth potential.
Some of the new areas coming under the radar that are still eligible are: Alcácer do Sal, Grândola, Santiago do Cacém, the Douro Valley, Aljezur, Peneda-Gerês, Madeira, and the Azores.
3. Some investment options have increased in cost
Outside the world of real estate, some of the other options have increased in price:
- Fund Subscription: Make a contribution into a qualified investment fund worth at least €500,000
- Capital Transfer: Make a capital transfer of at least €1.5 million
- Scientific Research: Science or technology research contribution of at least €500,000
- Shareholding + Job Creation: Investment of €350,000 in a company headquartered in Portugal, either for the incorporation of the company or for capital reinforcement, provided that it is combined with the creation of five permanent jobs and for a minimum period of three years.
What has remained the same?
Investors can be happy to know that they can still buy real estate worth at least €500,000 or invest in a rehabilitation project worth at least €350,000 to qualify for the Golden Visa program. The new changes are focused on residential properties, so you should have no problem with your commercial property investment!
Low-density areas are still categorized as such, meaning that a 20% discount applies – these are defined as territorial units (NUTS III) and have less than 100 inhabitants per square km or a per capita GDP of less than 75% of the national average.
Other routes that have stayed the same:
- To kickstart a company in Portugal and employ at least ten new local employees
- €250,000 donation to the arts
Sign up for the exclusive (and free) Golden Visa changes webinar!
There is much to digest with the latest Golden Visa changes, which is why our partners Global Citizen Solutions and Goldcrest have dedicated their new webinar to unpack and simply present everything for you. They will cover everything that you will need to know about the changes, where you can now invest, along with maps to easily present the possibilities for you.
Save the date – 7 March 2022, at 18:00 pm GMT (Lisbon time)
You can expect the following queries to be answered:
- Which real estate investment routes can I opt for to get Portuguese residency?
- Where are the best places to invest in residential property for the Golden Visa scheme now?
- Opportunities and pitfalls to be aware of?
- Plus much more!