Your Ultimate Guide to the Portuguese Golden Visa 2023

Portugal Golden Visa Changes, Updates & New Rules for 2023

Important
PORTUGAL GOLDEN VISA PROGRAM IS STILL ALIVE!
New Golden Visa Rules from October 2023
Contact DRP Advisers Team
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What is the Portugal Golden Visa Program?

The Portugal Golden Visa program, also known as the residence permit for investment activity, is a residency by investment scheme designed for non-EU citizens. It is the fastest program to obtain EU residence permit through investment activity in Europe.

The initiative was set up by the Portuguese government to boost the economy through foreign investments. It works by granting investors Portuguese residency for investment in different areas of the country.

How to Obtain a Portugal Golden Visa in 2023

To obtain the Golden Visa in Portugal, you must make a qualifying investment and keep it for five years. To apply for a Portugal Golden Visa, it is advised to consult with a Portuguese lawyer or Golden Visa Consultant, who will explain the whole procedure step by step and help you to choose the best investment.

Capital Transfer for Research Activities: Another option is to transfer a substantial capital amount, equal to or exceeding €500,000, to support research activities conducted by public or private scientific institutions that are part of Portugal's national scientific and technological system.

Supporting Cultural Heritage: Golden Visa applicants can also opt for capital transfers of €200,000 or more, specifically earmarked to support investments in artistic production, the restoration and maintenance of national cultural heritage. This can be achieved through various entities, including public institutes, central or peripheral direct administration services, public business sector entities, public foundations, private foundations with public utility status, inter-municipal entities, local business sector entities, municipal associative entities, and public cultural associations. These organizations typically engage in projects related to artistic production or the preservation of Portugal's rich cultural heritage.

Investing in Non-Real Estate Funds: Golden Visa candidates may choose to make capital transfers amounting to €500,000 or more, with the objective of acquiring participation units in investment funds (non-real estate collective investment entities) or venture capital funds. These funds should primarily focus on capitalizing companies incorporated under Portuguese legislation. Additionally, these investments must have a minimum maturity period of five years, and at least 60% of the investment value should be directed toward commercial companies based in Portugal.

Incorporating or Expanding Commercial Companies: Another viable avenue is to make capital transfers equal to or exceeding €500,000 for the incorporation of a commercial company with its headquarters in Portugal. This should be combined with the creation of at least five permanent jobs in such company. Alternatively, investors can opt to increase the share capital of an existing commercial company headquartered in Portugal in the amount of €500,000, with the condition of generating five permanent jobs or maintaining ten jobs for a minimum period of three years, five of them need to be permanent.

Job Creation. Creation of a minimum of 10 new full-time jobs in a Portuguese business that is owned by yourself as the main applicant.

These alternative pathways to the Golden Visa program in Portugal provide flexibility and options for investors, allowing them to choose the most suitable route based on their financial goals and business plans. As the program evolves, potential applicants should stay updated with the latest requirements and guidelines to ensure a successful Golden Visa application.

Benefits of Portugal Golden Visa

EU Residency

Family EU Residency (including children & parents)

EU Citizenship

EU Citizenship after 5 years, Portuguese passport 6th strongest in the world - Free movement worldwide

No residency requirement

No requirement to reside in Portugal, only visit of 7 days per year

Work and Business

Opportunity to work & conduct business in Portugal & EU

EU Education

Free EU Education for your children

Profitable investments

5-20% annual dividends

Income from Rent

Possibility of renting out the property after purchase & generating stable passive income

Easy investment exit

Easy investment exit with possibility to sell the property after 5 years and benefit from price appreciation

Investment from €280,000

Real Estate Investments from €280,000

Golden Visa Process and Timeline

The detail process of getting your golden visa in hand in the next 6 months.

Step 1
1 day

Signing a contract with a law firm for the provision of Golden Visa service

Step 2
2-4 weeks

Client signs power of attorney for lawyers to act on behalf of him and submit for TAX number, open bank account in Portugal

Step 3
1 - 2 weeks

Choosing the right investment together with DRP Advisers

Step 4
1-10 days

Investment purchase

Step 5
2-6 weeks

Collection of documents and online submission of the Golden Visa application to SEF

Step 6
6-12 months

Collecting of biometric data & submission of the original documents, personal visit to Portugal is required

Step 7
3 months

Golden Visa approval

What are the requirements for 2023?

1

Any non-EU/EEA/Swiss national can apply for the Portugal Golden Visa;

2

You’re required to be at least 18 years old and hold a clean criminal record from your home country;

3

The funds for the investment should arrive from outside of Portugal;

4

Make and maintain a qualified investment for 5 years;

5

Spend a minimum of 7 days annually in the country;

6

Under family reunification, you may extend the Golden Visa to the rest of the family members;

7

The main applicant needs to make the investment from a bank account in Portugal (you must also have a NIF number, which is a tax identification number in Portugal, to open the account).

What are the investment categories for Portugal Golden Visa Program?

There are a few different investment categories that qualify an investor for the Portugal Golden Visa. PGV offers these investment options:

Real Estate Acquisition

Investment Funds

Capital Transfer

Company Establishment

Cultural Heritage

Research Activities

Real Estate Acquisition

The lowest real estate investment threshold for the Golden Visa Program in Portugal is €280,000. In order to qualify for this option, the property needs to be older than 30 years old, renovated and located in a low-density area.

Another real estate acquisition option is getting a new property for €500,000 or choose to go with an urban where the minimum investment value drops down to €350,000. The objective of this option is to promote urban rehabilitation and offer the investors a series of benefits for contributing to the renovation of the property in return. This option is called “Urban Rehabilitation Real Estate Investment for Golden Visa”.

As of January 1st, 2022, areas where you can invest in real estate to qualify for the Portugal Golden Visa have been restricted. Residential properties purchased in Lisbon, Porto or the coastal towns do not qualify for the program. However, you can choose to invest in commercial properties and hotel investments in these locations and residential in the Autonomous Regions of the Azores and Madeira.

Company

Invest a minimum of €500,000:

  • in an existing Portuguese business, where the incorporated business must create a minimum of 5 new full-time jobs for at least 3 years;
  • creating a minimum of 8 new full-time jobs in a Portuguese business formed in a low-density area, owned by the main applicant;
  • creating a minimum of 10 new full-time jobs in a Portuguese business that is owned by yourself as the main applicant.
Donation

Here, you have 2 options:

  • Invest a minimum of €250,000 in preserving national heritage, and
  • Invest a minimum of €500,000 in a research and development activity.
Capital Transfer

A minimum of €1,5 million capital transfer to Portugal is required.

Fund Subscription

A minimum of €500,000 subscription in a venture capital Portuguese fund is required.

PORTUGAL GOLDEN VISA Investment Options

Option A
Investing in Non-Real Estate Funds
Golden Visa candidates may choose to make capital transfers amounting to €500,000 or more, with the objective of acquiring participation units in investment funds (non-real estate collective investment entities) or venture capital funds. These funds should primarily focus on capitalizing companies incorporated under Portuguese legislation. Additionally, these investments must have a minimum maturity period of five years, and at least 60% of the investment value should be directed toward commercial companies based in Portugal.
Supporting Cultural Heritage
Golden Visa applicants can also opt for capital transfers of €200,000 or more, specifically earmarked to support investments in artistic production, the restoration and maintenance of national cultural heritage. This can be achieved through various entities, including public institutes, central or peripheral direct administration services, public business sector entities, public foundations, private foundations with public utility status, inter-municipal entities, local business sector entities, municipal associative entities, and public cultural associations. These organizations typically engage in projects related to artistic production or the preservation of Portugal's rich cultural heritage.
Incorporating or Expanding Commercial Companies
Another viable avenue is to make capital transfers equal to or exceeding €500,000 for the incorporation of a commercial company with its headquarters in Portugal. This can be combined with the creation of at least five permanent jobs. Alternatively, investors can opt to increase the share capital of an existing commercial company headquartered in Portugal, with the condition of generating five permanent jobs or maintaining ten permanent jobs for a minimum period of three years.
Capital Transfer for Research Activities
Another option is to transfer a substantial capital amount, equal to or exceeding €500,000, to support research activities conducted by public or private scientific institutions that are part of Portugal's national scientific and technological system.

Required Documentations

1

Copy of a passport or the government-issued travel document;

2

Proof of evidence of the qualifying investment made by the main applicant individually;

3

Criminal record of the current country of residence;

4

A sworn declaration on compliance with the minimum investment requirements for the necessary time period of 5 years;

5

Documents outlining good standing with the Portuguese Tax and Customs Authority & Social Security System;

6

Receipt of ARI application payment.

The Application

The Golden Visa application is quite straightforward. If you take the necessary steps, you’ll have a successful application process. Check the steps below.

Step 1:

Decide on your Investment

Step 2:

Get a NIF and Open a Bank Account

Step 3:

Finalize the Investment

Step 4:

Gather all necessary documents

Step 5:

Submit Pre-Application

Step 6:

Schedule and Attend your SEF Appointment

Step 7:

Get your Golden Visa and Renew

Step 8:

Become a Portuguese Citizen

Fees and Costs

In addition to the minimum investment, you make and the necessary fees related to the transaction of the investment property, you will be faced with legal fees and government application fees, such as:

Processing Fee:

once at the beginning and then at each renewal €533 per applicant

Initial Application Fee:

once at the beginning €5,325 per applicant

Renewal Application Fee:

at each renewal €2,663 per person

Timeline

It can take up to eight months for SEF to approve and provide a biometrics appointment date. As the main applicant, you and all your dependents should book the SEF appointment. After the in-person interview, you will receive your Golden Visa Cards. It typically takes around 6-12 months to receive these residence permit cards.

Portugal Golden Visa Renewals

Residency under the Portugal Golden Visa Program must be renewed every 2 years. In total you have two renewals before you can apply for citizenship (year 2 & 4).

Renewals are processing very fast now. The automatic online renewal process introduced by SEF has been confirmed to be a quick process so far. Some of the first applicants who renewed their Golden Visa online reported receiving their new residency cards less than two weeks later. Additionally, a big advantage is that there is no requirement to submit documents that SEF already has access to as part of your initial application. This means that you will not need to present a new criminal record, apostilles, biometrics, etc.

Portugal Golden Visa Statistics

From October 2012 until 2023. In total, 12,497 investors have benefited from the Portugal Golden Visa during this time period with 5,366 going to investors from China, 1,221 from Brazil, 729 from the United States, 584 from Turkey, and 534 from South Africa, the top five nationalities to receive the Golden Visa over its ten-year history.

Kindlyt note, that as from October 2023 Real estate investments are not eligible for Golden Visa Program.

The investment types were as follows from October 2012 to July 2023.

Real estate acquisition: 10,624 residence permits

Real estate acquisition at a minimum value of €500,000: 9,152 residence permits

Real estateacquisition at a minimum value of €350,000: 1,516 residence permits

Capital transfer: 920 residence permits

Capital transfer into a Portuguese bank: 535 residence permits

Capital transfer into an investment Fund: 371 residence permits

Capital transfer and the creation of jobs: 7 residence permits

A donation for the preservation of cultural heritage in Portugal: 6 residence permits

A donation for research activities in Portugal: 1 residence permit

The creation of business and ten full-time jobs: 22 applications

How to get Portuguese EU Citizenship?

The Portugal Golden Visa Program is the fastest path to EU citizenship. Though it is important to know, that is not automatically granted. You must hold your investment for at least five years before you become eligible to apply for permanent residency or citizenship. With citizenship you can live, work, and study anywhere in the EU and travel visa-free to 172 destinations.

Kindly note that to acquire citizenship, you must have a clean criminal record, have a A2 Portuguese language certificate or pass a language exam, and demonstrate that you have genuine links to the country (by providing evidence of your investment, along with documents that prove your presence in Portugal such as your NIF number and Portuguese bank account).You do not need to live in Portugal, 7 days a year visit is the only requirement for Golden Visa. You and your family members can become EU citizens in just 5 years with no residence obligations.

Who we are and
how we can help you ?

We are the leading pioneer in Portuguese real estate consultancy and Golden Visa Program. Since 2015 our company has grown and have become a one-stop shop solution for this program offering bespoke services, expert knowledge, and custom-tailored services towards client needs. Our company works directly with you to provide expert advice on the investment and acquisition of property within Portugal – suitable for your investment requirements.

With a cosmopolitan team, our secure network of lawyers, property consultants and property developers are here to guide you every step of the way through your investment journey. DRP takes pride in its truly international team, with specialist representatives speaking French, Portuguese, English, Russian and more.

We are delighted to offer a comprehensive selection of specialized services like real estate purchase, Golden Visa, D7 Visa, Corporate Services, etc.

To find out more, please contact us:

frequently asked questions

What is a Portugal Golden Visa Program?
The Portugal Golden Visa Program, also known as the residence permit for investment activity, is a residency by investment scheme designed for non-EU citizens. It is the fastest program to obtain an EU residence permit through investment activity in Europe.
Who can apply for a Golden Visa?
Non-EU citizens over 18 years old who carry out an investment activity in Portugal.
What Are The Main Advantages of the Golden Visa Portugal Program?
  • Eligibility for Portuguese passport after 5 years, the fastest path to EU citizenship
  • Visa-free travel to the EU and Schengen Area
  • Affordable investments from €200,000
  • Family eligibility
  • Minimum stay requirements is only 7 days a year
  • Free healthcare and education
What is the process of the Golden Visa Portugal Program?
  • Get a NIF Tax Number & Open a Portuguese bank account.
  • Make an investment in Portugal
  • Collect all the documents required by SEF
  • Submit an online application with the required documents and pay the necessary administratives fees
  • Biometrics: After the preliminary approval of the application, an appointment is scheduled with SEF to submit in person all the documents and collect all the required personal data.
  • The applicant is after notified of the final approval for the final issuance of the residency cards
How Long Does it Take to Get The Residence Permit?
After the application is submitted, the government has 90 days for the approval, investors should receive their residency cards within 150 days.
What is the minimum investment for Golden Visa Portugal?
from €200,000
Which documents are required when applying for the Golden Visa?
  • Passport - It must be valid for at least another six months.
  • Criminal Records from your country
  • Proof of taxpayer number from your country
  • Proof of made investment in Portugal
  • Marriage certificate for the spouse
  • Birth Certificates of children & parents
What are the Government fees associated with the Golden Visa Application?
Processing fee (application and renewal): €514.80 per person
Initial golden visa: €5,147.80 per person
Renewal of golden visa: €2,573.90 per person
Can I apply remotely?
Yes, the DRP Advisers team has assisted hundreds of clients remotely. Investors are required to sign the POA with a legal firm that will represent their interests in Portugal. Nethertheless, it is a must to visit the country one time during the biometrics appointments.
Can I include my family members?

Yes, investors can include their spouse, dependent children up to 26 years old, parents over 65 years old or dependent on the main applicant.

Can spouses who are not officially registered apply?

Yes.

Can sisters/brothers of the main applicant apply?

No, they need to make their own investment and apply individually.

What are the Investment options for the Golden Visa Portugal Program?


  • A minimum of €500,000 investment in a qualifying Portuguese fund
  • Business Formation & Creation of a minimum of 5-10 new full-time jobs in a Portuguese business
  • Invest a minimum of €200,000 in preserving national heritage in Portugal or €500,000 in a research and development activity in Portugal.
Do Real Estate Investment options qualify for the Golden Visa Portugal Program?

As of October 2023 real estate investments do not qualify for Portugal Golden Visa Program

What Properties qualify for the 500k Golden Visa Portugal Program?

Purchase of commercial or residential inland & Madeira real estate with a value of at least €500,000;

What is the most popular investment for Golden Visa Portugal Program in 2024?

One of the top investment options under the Golden Visa program is to invest in a qualifying Portuguese investment fund. These funds are typically focused on various sectors, such as agriculture, finance, ai, healthcare, hospitality, etc.

What Properties qualify for the 350k Golden Visa Portugal Program?

Purchase of commercial or residential inland & Madeira real estate with a value of at least €350,000 that was constructed 30+ years ago or is located in an urban rehabilitation area. The value €350,000 must include not only the property price but also the cost of refurbishment works;

What Properties qualify for the 280k Golden Visa Portugal Program?

Purchase of commercial or residential inland & Madeira real estate with a value of at least €280,000. This 20% reduced property investment option has the same requirements as the €350,000 investment but property must be located in a low-density area.

Is It Possible To Make Property Investment In Co-Ownership?

Yes, as long as each investor makes the required minimum investment.

Can I take a loan to fund the investment for the Portugal Golden Visa?

Yes, you can. However, it cannot be issued from a Portuguese financial institution. To qualify for the Golden Visa program the funds invested must come from outside of Portugal. As an alternative you can

What are the Taxes And Fees For Purchasing Real Estate In Portugal?

DRP Advisers can send you calculations of all the costs for investors.

Property Purchase Tax IMT ranges from 6% to 8% from the property price.

Stamp duty tax is 0.8% from the property price.

The Notary Cost is around €1,000.

Land Registry Fees are around €200-300.

Annual Real Estate tax IMI ranges between 0.3% to 0.8%.

Legal fees - it is advised that you hire a Portuguese lawyer for the purchase of the property.

DRP Advisers can introduce you to the best legal firms in Portugal.

Are there any taxes from the property rental income in Portugal?

28% tax for any individual receiving rental income in Portugal.

Do I have to pay taxes in Portugal?

If you don't spend more than 180 days a year in Portugal and become a tax resident, you are not required to pay taxes in the country.

What are the benefits of the NHR tax system?

You can enjoy the tax exemption on almost all foreign source income for 10 years.

How many days do I need to stay in Portugal to keep the Golden Visa?

You don’t have to move to Portugal to keep your residence permit.

Minimum stay requirement for Golden Visa is 7 days a year or 14 days in 2 years.

For how long is the Portugal Golden Visa valid?

Your first residency is valid for 2 years with two renewals in total (year 2 & 4).

When can I apply for Portuguese Citizenship?

After 5 years of residency in Portugal investors and their family members can apply for citizenship.

How many countries can I visit with a Golden Visa and Portuguese Passport?

With the residence permit issued by Portugal, you can visit or live in other Schengen states for up to 90 days in a 180 day period without a visa.

Once you become a Portuguese citizen, you get visa-free access to 188 countries and live in any EU country full-time.

Portugal vs Spain vs Greece Golden Visa: which one is better?

If your goal is to obtain an EU passport, the Portugal Golden Visa would be the best option.

What happens with the status of the investor if the law changes and Golden Visa is no longer allowed in Portugal?

Any changes shall only apply for the future, meaning that all Golden Visas that were granted until the changes were made shall remain valid under the current terms and conditions.

How can DRP Advisers help you?

Portugal’s leading real estate consultancy for locals and expats around the world.

We develop individual solutions for our clients to remove visa restrictions, create a safe haven for them and their families, legally reduce their taxes and also support them throughout the immigration process. With our extensive portfolio of properties, we provide smart, creative solutions for both buyers and sellers to ensure you optimize your purchase, sale or investment.

Does DRP have a licence?

DRP Consultores Madeira LDA is regulated by IMPIC (Instituto dos Mercados Públicos, do Imobiliário e da Construção) holding Real Estate AMI Licence 21431

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