Considering obtaining Spanish residency by property investment in 2020? Archipelago’s definitive 2020 Golden Visa Spain FAQ answers all your most frequently asked questions about the Spanish investor visa programme. Find out more about your investment options as a non-EU investor, or contact us now for a free needs analysis and consultation.

1. How much does the Spain Golden Visa cost?

The minimum property investment requirement is €500,000. There are also a number of other investment options, priced at €1 million+ and €2 million+, respectively.


A Golden Visa requires to a specific class of residency permit enabling non-EU nationals to obtain residency in Spain on the basis of an eligible business investment or through the purchase of a qualifying property.

3. What are the tax implications of getting a Spanish Golden Residency permit?

Foreigners are exempt from taxation on their worldwide income in Spain, provided that they reside in Spain for less than 183 days per year. Rental income derived from a Spanish investment property is taxed at a rate of 24%. If you were to permanently reside in Spain, or spend more than 183 days per year in-country, you’ll become treated as tax resident, in which case you will start being taxed on your worldwide income.

4. What documentation is required to apply?

The following list of required documents was deemed accurate as of July 2019:

  • A passport valid for at least 1 years.

  • A property registry filing or notarised deeds and proof of the inclusion thereof in the Property Registry.

  • Certified proof of a clean criminal record

  • Proof of financial solvency

  • Two ID photographs

  • A marriage certificate, if you will be lodging an application for your spouse as well

  • Birth certificates for your children under the age of 18 years.

5. What are the benefits of a Spanish Investor Visa?

In addition to granting the investor residency in Spain, the investor visa also affords the holder freedom of movement across 26 other Schengen countries. While a Spanish property or business investment can also deliver significant potential returns, most non-EU nationals choose to get the investor visa as a Plan B against socio-economic and political risks in their native countries. In addition, Spain offers one of the highest living standards and a thriving economy in one of Europe’s most vibrant and scenic destinations.

6. What about the renewal intervals?

Your Golden Visa is initially issued for a period of 1 year, after which it can be renewed for an additional two years, after which it can be renewed again. Permanent residency can be applied for after you’ve actually lived in the country for a period of 5 years.


7. Why choose the Spanish Golden Visa?

Boasting sunny weather, diverse and beautiful scenery, as well as sumptuous local cuisine and a culture highly compatible with those of outdoor living focussed countries such as South Africa, Spain is an excellent choice as a second residency country. It is also renowned for its technology and public transport infrastructure, and serves as the perfect location for those seeking to do business in Europe or create a second base in the EU. Spanish residency also gives you the right to live, work and study in Spain, while also giving you visa free mobility across 26 other EU countries.

8. How long does it take to apply?

One of the key advantages of the Spanish investor visa programme is the speed with which the primary applicant can obtain their Golden Visa. Once the requisite investment has been made and the full application has been submitted (a process than takes around 3 months), visa approval or denial can be expected within approximately one month.

9. What is the legal basis for the Spanish immigrant investor programme?

Law 14/2013, gazetted on 27 September 2013, makes provision for the creation of an investor specific visa category allowing non-EU nationals to obtain Spanish residency by making an eligible investment of at least €500,000.

10. What are the minimum stay requirements for maintaining my Spanish Golden Visa?

The minimum prescribed stay requirement in Spain is only one week per year, making the country highly attractive for those seeking a low maintenance Plan B option in Schengen Europe.

11. What are the 2019 requirements for a Golden Visa in Spain?

While the below list is not exhaustive, the following application criteria apply as of August 2019:

  • Applicants have to be non-EU nationals over the age of 18

  • The spouse, dependent children and dependent parents of the primary applicant are eligible to apply as well

  • A clean criminal record is a non-negotiable requirement, and the applicant must be of good international standing.

  • The applicant must make an eligible investment of no less than €500,000

  • The investment forming the basis upon which the Golden Visa is applied for must be maintained for the duration of the Golden Visa residency.

12. Spain immigration: What should I expect?

While there have been reported cases of some anti foreigner sentiments pertaining to tourism, especially in Catalonia and Barcelona specifically, Spaniards are generally very gregarious and welcoming. The lifestyle is highly compatible with that of South Africa, and with English widely spoken throughout Spain’s major cities, it makes for a relatively easy cultural transition.

13. Are my family members eligible for a Golden Residency in Spain?

Yes. Your spouse and dependent children under the age of 18 years can be included under your application.


14. Does Spain offer a direct Citizenship By Investment Programme?

No. With the Spanish Residency Programme, as with most other Golden Visa Programmes in Europe, the road to permanent residency and eventual eligibility to apply for citizenship is a step by step process known to take up to 10 years or more. It is important to note that you’ll only become eligible to apply for citizenship after having lived in the country for 10 years. For most applicants, however, the objective is to obtain a second residency in Europe, without necessarily wishing to obtain a Spanish passport.

15. What is the legal basis for the Spanish immigrant investor programme?


Law 14/2013, gazetted on 27 September 2013, makes provision for the creation of an investor specific visa category allowing non-EU nationals to obtain Spanish residency by making an eligible investment of at least €500,000.

16. What is the NIE?


Short for “Numero de Identidad Extranjero“, the NIE is the identification document issued to non-Spanish residents. It is required to work, study, open a bank account and buy property.

17. What are the investment options available under this residency programme?

  • Property: Investors can choose to invest either in real estate (commercial or residential), with minimum investments from €500,000.

  • Spanish bank deposit: Alternatively, investors can opt to make a €1 million bank deposit in a Spanish Financial Entity,

  • Business investment: The golden residency permit can also be obtained by investing a €1 million in the shares of a Spanish company.

  • Government bond investment programme: Foreign capital investors also have the option of making a €2 million investment in Spanish government bonds.

  • Job creation: The Golden Visa can be obtained by establishing a business entity that creates employment opportunities for Spanish citizens, or that has a beneficial socio-economic impact in Spain. Businesses that can contribute to scientific or technological advancements for the country are also more favourably considered.

Given all the above benefits, it’s no wonder that Spain has recently taken the lead as the top EU Golden Visa destination. Simply complete the below form and request a free consultation and get started.