Greece Golden Visa - Residence Permit


Table of Contents

Background and Guide - Greece Permanent Residence Permit Programme

Greece is a country full of culture, myth and legend and a nation who is proud of its rich heritage and traditions. Famed for the beauty of its landscape, Greece is unique, for it seems the Greek gods themselves have scattered little pieces of paradise into the sea which we so lovingly know as the Greek Islands.

Whatever your interests or the lifestyle you choose to adopt, you can be sure of a warm welcome from the people of Greece. A healthy climate, good food and wine, a new Greek home, a new and exciting lifestyle, a dream finally realized.

Acquire your holiday home in peaceful Paros, cosmopolitan Santorini or glorious Crete and combine holidays with tailor-made Investment.

Now in 2024, it is possible to apply for High Net Worth Immigration to Greece, and obtain a Greece Permanent Residence Permit (Greece Golden Visa), which allows the applicant and his family to live, work, and study anywhere in the beautiful islands of Greece through a simple and fast property investment! Contact our Greece Immigration Consultants and Greek Lawyers by telephone or visit us in our offices in Brisbane, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, London, UK and Lisbon, Portugal.

Why Invest in Greece Property?

  • Greece Passport - 8th Ranked Passport in 2023 - The Henley Global Passport Ranking Index in 2023 Q1 ranked Greece as the 3rd highest ranked passport in the world, with access to 185 Visa-free countries.
  • Safe Country - Greece is one of the safest countries in the Mediterranean region (top of EU list).
  • Geographic Location - Strategic link to the emerging markets of the Balkans, Black Sea, Eastern Europe and Eastern Mediterranean regions.
  • EU Member Country - Greece is a Member of the European Union, since 1981, which allows for free movement of people, goods, services, and capital within the internal market. In addition, Greece has access to the Schengen zone, in Europe. Greece is also a Member of the European Monetary Union, which are likely to continue providing strategic oversight, assistance and access to credit.
  • Beauty - Unparalleled beauty and diversity in landscape & Vegetation.
  • Climate - Healthy Mediterranean climate with 320 sunny days a year.
  • Beaches and Islands - 428 blue flagged beaches & 16,000 km of coastline. Unique 'island hopping', 6,000 islands & isles.
  • Healthy Diet - World's healthiest diet & exquisite local cuisine and wines.
  • Friendly People - Friendly and hospitable people, relaxed lifestyle.
  • English Speaking - English is widely spoken in Greece. English is the first foreign language Greek students learn from an early age. Official data released by the Eurobarometer Special Surveys shows that, when it comes to people being able to speak English, Greece reaches 51 percent.
  • Rich History & Culture - Innumerable tourist sites of interest. Vivid modern life (culture and social).
  • Infrastructure - Advanced infrastructure & expertise in professional services. Greece has a developed infrastructure that enables the uninterrupted implementation of most investment activities. Within the framework of holding the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, and the investment in the following years several changes and improvements in a variety of areas, including the infrastructure of Greece were materialized.
  • Healthcare - Healthcare in Greece consists of a universal health care system provided through national health insurance, and private health care. According to Finance Minister Christos Staikouras, Greece’s total health spending will bump up to 11.7 billion euros in 2022. The amount, which involves all government ministries, equals 6.3 percent of Greece’s GDP, and thus puts the country close to the European Union average of 7 percent. Meanwhile, Staikouras stated that the government will hire an additional 6,000 health workers in 2022, an estimated 29 percent of total hirings.
  • Free Education - The provision of free education to all citizens and at all levels of the state education system is a constitutional principle of the Greek State. Education is compulsory from the ages of 6 to 15.
  • Increasing Tourist Numbers - 2022 - Greece Visitor Arrivals recorded 2,205,210 person in May 2022, compared with 1,056,001 person in the previous month. Greece Visitor Arrivals data is updated monthly, available from Jan 2005 to May 2022. The data reached an all-time high of 6,761,996 person in Aug 2019 and a record low of 37,566 person in Apr 2020.
  • Transport Connections - Excellent international flight connections by Air to Europe, Africa and Asia, transport between the Greek Islands by ferry, and Intercity bus connections. One of the strongest shipping sectors in the world.
  • Foreign Investment - Greece marked an impressive increase of 74.3 percent in foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2021, according to the Hellenic Investment and Foreign Trade Company, also known as Enterprise Greece. Enterprise Greece recently released data issued by the Bank of Greece showing that net inflows of foreign direct investment exceeded 5 billion euros ($5,055.9 million).
  • Low Cost of Living - Life in Greece is unusually affordable for Europe. With a relatively low budget, you can live a good life - even in the capital of Athens. Rental prices are low for a European country.
  • Gross Domestic Product - Gross Domestic Product of Greece grew 2.3% in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the previous quarter. This rate is 15 -tenths of one percent higher than the figure of 0.8% published in the fourth quarter of 2021. The year-on-year change in GDP was 7%, 11 -tenths of one percent less than the 8.1% recorded in the forth quarter of 2021.

Real Estate Investment Eligibility - Greece Residence Permit

To be eligible for the Greece Permanent Residence Permit (Greece Golden Visa Programme), the applicant must:

  • Purchase a Property in Greece valued at a minimum of €250,000 EUR or a minimum of €500,000 Euros, depending on the location.
  • Residence available to non-EU citizens and their family members (spouse, children up to the age of 21 years, and the ascendants of the spouse).
  • The purchase of the property must be by an individual or legal entity.

Investment Options to Obtain Greece Residence

Greece Golden Visa applicants must make one of the following investments:

1. From 1 August 2023, €500,000 Euros Investment, in Greece Real Estate for the following Regions of Greece:

  • Regional Units of North, Central and South Athens
  • The Municipality of Varis, Voulas, Vouliagmeni of the Region of Attica
  • The Municipality of Thessaloniki of the Region of Central Macedonia
  • The Regional Units of Mykonos and Santorini of the Region of South Aegean

The minimum value of the real estate at the time of its acquisition, and the total contractual rent of the leases of hotel accommodation or tourist residences of the present, is set at five hundred thousand (€500,000 Euros) and must be paid in full before the submission of the request for the granting of the investors permanent residence permit.

In the case of investment through the purchase of real estate in the areas referred to above, it shall be made in a single property. In the case of investment through the purchase of an undivided co-ownership interest in real estate, the minimum value of the co-ownership interest shall be set at five hundred thousand (€500,000 Euros) and the investment shall be made in a single property.

Among the areas left out of this new Law of August 2023 is the Municipality of Piraeus in Greater Athens, which still allows a Real Estate investment of €250,000 Euros for the Greece Golden visa.

2. New Rules as at 31 March 2024 for Investment in Greece Real Estate

As at 31 March 2024, there will be a further increase in the Real Estate Investment amount to €400,000 Euros or €800,000 Euros ($861,000 USD), for real estate investments in certain parts of the country.

  • €800,000 Euros - This will apply to areas like Athens, Mykonos, Santorini and Islands with a population exceeding 3,100.
  • €400,000 Euros - This will apply to ALL other areas of Greece.
  • €250,000 Euros - This will still apply for properties undergoing conversion from commercial to residential or for listed building restorations.
  • Transitional Period - Investors can still qualify under the old rules, provided that they sign a pre-contract or private purchase Agreement for a property by 30 September 2024, with a minimum investment of €250,000 Euros or €500,000 Euros, depending on the location. Note that the investment must be completed by 31 December 2024.

3. Other Investment options to obtain the Greece Golden visa

  • €400,000 Euros investment in a Real Estate investment company investing exclusively in Greece or buy shares through a share-capital increase scheme;
  • €400,000 Euros investment in a Capital Equity Company or an equity mutual fund investing exclusively in companies based in Greece;
  • €400,000 Euros investment in Greek State Bonds with a maturity of at least three years through a credit institution based in Greece;
  • €400,000 Euros investment in a Time Deposit at a domestic credit institution with a duration of at least 12 months;
  • Minimum of €800,000 Euros investment in Shares, Corporate Bonds or State Bonds;
  • €400,000 Euros investment in a Mutual Fund, investing exclusively in Shares, Corporate Bonds or State Bonds;
  • €400,000 Euros investment in buying shares in an Alternative Investment Organization set-up in Greece or in another EU member-state that invests exclusively in real estate assets in Greece.

Benefits of Greece Permanent Residence Permit

Outlined below are the benefits of obtaining the Greece Residence Permit. Also, see VisaConnect's PDF document: Greece Residence by Investment, in 2024:

  • Family Residency - Spouse and Children up to 21 years old: - Residence Permits are issued for the investor’s spouse and all their children up to 21 years old, provided that they are still unmarried. As spouses are considered opposite-sex married couples and both opposite-sex and same-sex couples who have entered into a civil union in Greece.
  • Family Residency - Parents / Parents-in-Law: - The investor’s parents and parents-in-law may also be granted a Residence Permit, without any further requirements.
  • Family Residency - Children over 21 years old: - A Golden Visa can also be granted to children over the age of 21, provided that the value of the acquired real estate attributed to each child is at least €250,000.
  • Flexibility - No minimum stay requirement. Just need to visit Greece once every 5 years, for 1 day.
  • EU Schengen Visa Travel - Travel directly to all 26 Schengen Area countries.
  • Excellent Investment - Exceptional investment opportunity due to all-time low property prices, in 2022.
  • Permanent Residence for Life - Provided that the Property continues to be in the possession of the Applicant.
  • Fast Processing Time - From the day that you receive the Title Deed, you will be granted permanent residence within 30 to 60 days.
  • No Savings Requirements - No minimum savings bank account requirements.
  • Renewal of Residence Permit - Residence permit renewable every five years, as long as the Applicant holder maintains a property in Greece.
  • Transfer of Residence Permit - The investor may sell the property and transfer it to another non-EU National, who in turn will also be eligible for PR.
  • Free Education - Access to free public schools for primary and secondary education.
  • Greece Citizenship - Live as a resident in Greece on the resident permit for 7 consecutive years (180 days in each year), and then apply for Greece Citizenship and a Greece EU Passport.

Legal Assistance to obtain Greece Residence Permit

Outlined below are the legal services that our Greece Lawyers can assist with:

1. Property selection and price negotiation.

2. Land Registry search.

3. Real estate Due diligence process.

4. Draft any PoA, promissory sale and sale agreement.

5. Ensure anonymity and Confidentiality via NDA's.

6. Official translation of all documents required.

7. Issuance of Greek TIN (Tax Identification Number).

8. Opening of a Bank account on behalf of the client.

9. Sale transaction.

10. Drafting of Contracts (Agreements).

11. Registration of title deed at the Land Registry and the Cadastral Office.

12. Management of the property, after the purchase, including rental income.

13. Residency Permit application, with supporting documents.

Schengen Visa to Visit Greece for Chinese and Indian Citizens

Citizens of China and India who are planning to enter Greece must apply for a Schengen visa. Citizens of China and India need a visa to travel to Greece as tourists. The Schengen visa is a mandatory document to enter Greece as it is a member of the European Union and part of the Schengen area. The Uniform Schnegen visa allows the visitor to stay up to 90 days, from date of entry, within a 180-day period.

The following documents are required for the Greece Schengen visa:

1. Schengen Visa Application Form - Form must be fully completed and signed.

2. Passport - Valid passport

3. Return trip Reservation - Round trip reservation or itinerary. It must include dates and flight numbers specifying entry and exit from the Schengen area.

4. Travel Insurance Policy - A document that proves you have travel health insurance for the whole Schengen territory, with a minimum coverage of 30,000 euros in case of any medical emergency as illnesses, accidents and even repatriation in case of death. The Insurance policy can easily be purchased online from AXA Schengen or Europ Assistance.

5. Evidence of Accommodation - A document that shows where you will be accommodated throughout your stay in Schengen. This can be one of the following: hotel/hostel booking, Rental agreement or Letter of invitation from a host at whose house you will be staying.

6. Evidence of Financial Means - Evidence that you have enough money to support yourself financially throughout your stay in the Schengen. This can be one of the following: Bank account Statements or Sponsorship letter.

7. Employment or Business details - Employees need to provide: Employment contract, Current bank statement of the latest 6 months, Leave permission from the employer and Income Tax Return (ITR). Self-Employed Applicants must provide a copy of business license, bank statements and Income tax returns.

8. Child Applicant - Provide a birth certificate of the child, Application form signed by both parents/guardians. If a child is traveling alone, provide a notarized parental authorization, which is signed by both parents/guardians.

Supporting Documents for Greece Residence Permit

Outlined below are the supporting documents required for a Greece Residence Permit:

1. Original Passport - Provide the original Passport for the Client Applicant and each member of the family who is applying for a Residence Permit, and a true copy of the Passport.

2. Health and Medical Insurance - The Client Applicant must provide Health Insurance, with cover for hospitalization and medical care from an Insurance company for each member of the family applying for the Residence Permit. The Applicant must select a Greek Insurance company according to their requirements. The fees for the Health insurance depend on the Age of the members of the family.

3. Marriage and Birth and Family certificates - The Applicant must provide Family certificates that prove the relationship between the members of the family applying for the Residence Permit. All the family certificates must include the birth dates of the people involved and not only the ID cards. This family certificate must be stamped in the Greek Embassy, which certifies that this is an exact and true copy of the genuine documents. Then, the client sends it to his Lawyer in Greece, and the Lawyer translates it to Greek officially, with assistance from an official translator in Greece.

Contact VisaConnect for Greek Property Purchase !

See our website page below, for information about Greece Investment properties, and our Greece Real Estate service for High Net Worth Individuals who wish to buy a property in Greece for investment purposes or to qualify for the Greece Residence Permit.

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

Can VisaConnect's Visa Agency introduce me to Properties, in Greece?

Yes, we can introduce/refer you to our trusted and experience Greek Property Partners for the purchase of modern contemporary Properties, mainly in the Athens area.

What are the main Advantages of acquiring Greek Permanent Residency?

  1. 1. PERMANENT RESIDENCY - The program provides for permanent residency in a Schengen country and not a visa or a 5 years visa or just Residency.
  2. 2. ASCENDANTS-DESCENDANTS - for main applicants. All the living ascendants and descendants
    of the main applicants are also eligible the permanent residency. Children over 21 years old can
    renew their PR until 24 years old.
  3. 3. SAME DAY APPROVAL - Applicants are approved on the same day while the attorney files the application on their behalf and receive the “blue paper”. After 3-6 weeks they will receive the Permanent residency card.
  4. 4. No Need to Visit Greece - There is no request to enter Greece once in order to submit PR application, there are no days to be required in Greece in order to be eligible or keep the permanent residency.
  5. 5. Sale of Property - Selling the property to another third country citizen will automatically constitute a permanent
    residency right to the buyer.
  6. 6. Transfer Property - Property owners could transfer property under their child's name when child is over 24 years.
    Then child becomes main applicant, child's ascendants and child's descendants (if child has any)
    become the depended persons.
  7. 7. Property Rental - Right to rent their property and have a return on their investment.
  8. 8. RIGHT TO APPLY FOR CITIZENSHIP - Children are required to stay and study in Greece for 6 years in a row before turning 18 years old. Then, they can apply for citizenship at any time, without taking a language examination. Adults are required to live in Greece for 183 days/year for 7 years. Then they need to pass the official government’s Greek language examination before getting their citizenship.
  9. 9. No Character Certificate Required - No need for clients to submit official non-criminal record.
  10. 10. No Tax records - No need to show evidence that the money has been taxed in their home country.
  11. 11. No Medicals - No medical examination requirements.

How can I sign a Power of Attorney, if I am not in Greece?

No problem, you can sign the Greek Lawyer's Power of Attorney at the Greek Embassy or Consulate, in your country of residence.

Can I pay for a Greek Property in cash?

No, payment for the Greek Property must be made by bank transfer payment.

How much must I pay to reserve a Greek Property?

The clients must pay a 10% deposit to reserve the property and sign a reservation agreement. Secondly, before the appointed date (usually within a month), clients must finish the rest of the payment via bank transfer payment.

After signing the Power of Attorney, what services will the Greek Lawyer provide?

After the client signs the power of attorney, the attorney will act on behalf of the client to help them finish the tax number procedure, property transaction and land registration procedures in Greece. 

In addition, the attorney will help clients prepare the documents to apply for the PR and help them book the appointment for application, fingerprint registration, submit the application document and track the progress of the application.

How long does it take for the Property to be Transferred?

It will take a maximum of 3 months for the attorney and notary to finish the property transfer procedure after the client has completed the payment.

When will I receive the Title Deed from the Land Registry?

It will take approximately 10 business days for the attorney to finish the land registry, after the property transfer has been completed and client will receive the title deed. 

Is the Greek Property Freehold or Leasehold?

The client is detached from the Developer and the property belongs to the client forever. Properties in Greece are freehold.

How do I apply for my Greek Permanent Residency?

The Attorney will book the appointment with the immigration office on clients’ behalf and assist the clients to submit the documents. Then the attorney can file the application without clients’ presence and on the same day of the submission, the application is approved, and clients will receive a temporary residency card (blue paper), which is the proof that states that the application has been accepted by the Greek government. This blue paper has 1 year validity and can be used as a D type visa, which means clients can travel to Greece without applying for Schengen visa again by using this blue paper and their passport. On the same day of the submission, clients have the choice to give fingerprints, if they are in Greece.

What is the Processing time until I get a Greek Permanent Residency Card?

After filing the application in maximum 2-3 months clients will receive the Investor Permanent Residency card if they can come in Greece within this period and provide fingerprints. Generally, PR applicants after receiving the blue paper have 1 year time allowance to come to Greece and complete the fingerprints procedure, as required by Schengen treaty and this is the only time that applicants are required to visit Greece. Therefore, the total time to receive the PR card is up to 6 months after completing the payment.