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Golden Visa Portugal: invest in Portugal and get a residence permit

Portugal Golden Visa Investment options

Living in Portugal and traveling freely throughout much of Europe. This is what the Golden Visa program in Portugal - also known as the Golden Resident Permit Program (GRPP) - makes possible for non-EU nationals and their families.


Updated 14-01-2022 

Portugal's Golden Visa program has proven to be one of the world's most popular. Since the Portuguese Golden Visa program was launched in 2012, many investors and family members have benefited from this entry into Europe. With billions of direct investments resulting from the Golden Visa programme, the program shows to be very popular and successful. It has therefore become known as the most successful residency-by-investment program in Europe. 



The benefits of the Portugal Golden Visa


The Golden Visa offers a wide range of benefits:


  • Free travelling throughout the entire Schengen Area, which consists of 26 European countries.
  • After 5 years you can apply for Portuguese citizenship.
  • You can include
    • your spouse and your children - provided that they are younger than 18, or younger than 26 if they are single, and are studying full-time.
    • your parents and those of your spouse if they are over 66, or over 55 if they depend on you for care.
    • you or your spouse’s, siblings if they are under the age of 18.
  • Unlike many other Golden Visa programs in Europe, Portugal is not blacklisted by the OECD, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. You are therefore using a reliable visa program.
  • You have the option to use the Portuguese Non-Habitual Tax Regime, and be eligible for tax benefits.


With the Golden Visa program non-EU nationals receive a Portuguese visa for themselves and their entire family. This residence permit is valid for five years and it not only gives you access to Portugal, but offers you the possibility to travel freely up to 90 days for any 180 day period throughout the entire Schengen Area. This consists of 26 countries in Europe, including Spain, France, Germany and Italy. 


After five years, you have the opportunity to apply for a Portuguese permanent residence permit. A year later, once you have been registered as a resident of Portugal for six years, you are eligible for Portuguese citizenship. Your Portuguese passport then offers you the opportunity to travel freely throughout no fewer than 182 countries.


Although other countries in Europe also have their own investment program to obtain a visa and ultimately European citizenship, Portugal's Golden Visa program stands out. It distinguishes itself by being easy, fast, and cheaper than other Golden Visa programs in Europe, and it gives immediate access to the very attractive NHR tax regime, which provides fiscal benefits as well.


 Golden Visa and the attractive NHR tax regime


As a Portuguese Golden Visa holder you automatically qualify for the Portuguese Non-Habitual Tax Regime. This attractive tax regime can exempt you from paying taxes on various sources of income locally or abroad, such as on income from real estate, shares, and from the sale of real estate abroad.


If you receive additional income in Portugal, you can be eligible to pay only the flat rate of 20 percent tax during the first ten years if your profession is on the list of specific professions, and you only pay a flat rate of 10% on income that you collect outside of Portugal. Finally, you can also give a part of your money to your spouse or a dependent family member tax-free!



Portugal Golden Visa Investment options

  • Purchase a residential property of at least € 500,000. The property needs to be located in a low-density area. From January 11th 2022 Portugal introduced this change to boost interest in interior areas of the country. Properties located in Alentejo for example are all eligable as well as a few designated low-density areas in the Algarve. 
  • Purchase a commercial/tourist licensed property for at least € 500.000. The purchase of a commercial property located anywhere in Portugal is eligable for your Golden Visa application. 
  • Purchase a property of at least € 350,000 located in an area where urban rehabilitation is taking place. Municipalities in Portugal have classified ARU (Áreas de Reabilitação Urbana) domains as areas designated for urban regeneration. The property must be older than 30 years old or be located in ARU. As the name suggests, these areas are opened to “urban rehabilitation” by the State. Acquisition of real estate, which must be constructed more than 30 years ago or located in an urban rehabilitation area.  The acquired property must be rehabilitated in accordance with the municipality regulations.  The total amount of the property purchase price and the renovation works must equal or be greater than €350,000.
  • The investment of at least € 500,000 in a qualified Investment Fund.
  • Make a capital transfer of at least 1,5 million euros in a Portuguese bank account.
  • Invest at least €500,000 for the creation of a commercial company or to reinforce the share capital of a commercial company, through which you create at least five full-time jobs.
  • Make a capital transfer of at least €500,000 for research activities in science or technology by either public or private scientific research institutions.
  • Launch a company in Portugal and create at least ten new, full-time jobs for Portuguese nationals.
  • Make a capital transfer of at least €250,000 to support the arts.

Portugal’s Golden Visa through the purchase of property

Purchasing real estate is the most popular option to obtain a Golden Visa in Portugal. More than 90 percent of the Visas are given through the purchase of real estate in Portugal. Below we provide you more detailed information about this option.


When do you qualify for a Golden Visa through property investment?

In order to be eligible for a Golden Visa in Portugal  a property purchase has to be done for at least € 500,000. You can buy a commercial (= a touristic licensed) property throughout Portugal (all locations). If you are buying a residential property (= a property with a habitation license), since January 1st 2022, this property needs to be located in a low-density area. Only when being located in a low-density area, residential property purchases above € 500.000 are eligable for a Golden Visa application. Porto and Lissabon are not classified as low-density areas; purchasing a property in Porto in Lisbon for a Golden Visa application is no longer possible. The whole of the Alentejo, for example, is classified as low-density. As well as certain councils and parishes in the Algarve. 

Areas that are classified as low-density areas in the Algarve are the councils of:

  • Alcoutim
  • Aljezur
  • Castro Marim
  • Monchique
  • Vila do Bispo

Also a few parishes are appointed as low-density areas. These are the parishes of:

  • Alte, Ameixial, Salir, and the parish of Querença, Tôr and Benafim,  located in the council of Loulé.
  • São Marcos da Serra, located in the council of Silves
  • Cachopo and Santa Catarina da Fonte do Bispo, located in Tavira council.

However there are other types of investment to get the Golden Visa permit, these do not bring the same benefits of when buying a property in Portugal to obtain your visa.

Additional benefits of buying a property are:

  • The opportunity to have your own family vacation spot in Portugal, where you are guaranteed a sunny climate and safe living environment (Portugal is ranked 4th in the ranking of safest countries in the world (!!), in the Global Peace Index 2021)
  • The possibility of renting out your property as a holiday home in Portugal for an attractive return on investment, thus generating additional income.
  • The possibility to increase the value of the real estate and therefore your investment, simply by keeping it in your possession (which you are obliged to do for five years in order to keep your Golden Visa, see below).


Golden Visa Portugal: rules and conditions


As an non-EU national investing in Portuguese real estate, what should you take into account if you want to be eligible for a Golden Visa?

  • You must be over the age of 18, and own the money that you invest.
  • The property you purchase must meet the requirements described above and it is important that you keep the property in your possession for at least five years.
  • You are required to spend only seven days in Portugal in order to keep your visa.
  • Finally, you must not have a criminal record if you want to obtain a Golden Visa.


Do you meet the necessary conditions to start the Golden Visa application? You can expect the procedure to take approximately three to six months.


 Golden Visa Portugal: costs to be aware of:


The costs that the Portuguese government charges for obtaining a Golden Visa are relatively low:

- To apply for a visa, the amount due is slightly above 500 euros (plus around 80 euros for every family member who also wishes to apply for a visa).

- If the application for the Golden Visa is granted, a fee of approximately 5,200 euros per visa holder will be added.

- The visa must be renewed at the end of the first and third year. This entails a cost of around 2,600 euros per visa holder.

- In subsequent years, the renewal fee is around 500 euros per person.


The step-by-step plan for a real estate investment in order to obtain a Golden Visa for Portugal


If you choose to invest in real estate in order to obtain your Golden Visa, we recommend that you first gather reliable information about the Portuguese real estate market.


What are the most attractive regions of Portugal for making an investment that meets your wishes? On which real estate investments can you make a good return? Which region is the best for rentals? Which regions in Portugal are appealing to you if you plan to regularly spend time in your holiday home? 


Divine Home can assist you in the preparation. Because we know Portugal so well, we give you the best advice regarding the most attractive regions for making a real estate investment that matches your personal wishes. When doing a proper preparation your time in Portugal can be spent wisely. We can show you the various options that match your criteria and help you with the purchase of your property, and with the legal proceedings that you must go through when purchasing a property in Portugal. We can advise you a lawyer you can organise the Golden Visa for you and help you get a fiscal number, and bank account. 


Are you planning to make a real estate investment in Portugal, and do you want us to help you? Contact us for expert advice.


Below image shows the low-density areas in the Algarve. Image drawn up by Martinez-Echevarria Ferreira & Rivera Law firm