Major Changes Coming to the Portugal Golden Visa Programme
11 October 2020
The Portugal Government is set to make significant changes to their popular Golden Visa programme that will have major implications for clients considering this popular EU residence by investment option.
Why is the programme so popular?
The Portugal Golden Visa programme has been one of the world’s most successful residence by investment programmes due to its minimal residence requirements and flexible path to citizenship. Portugal residence permit holders also gain the right to live and work year-round in Portugal and enjoy visa-free access to the entire EU.
They offer several qualifying investment options from Portugal real estate to venture capital funds to even business options. However, buying property in Portugal accounts for over 90% of applications.
Forbes magazine even recently rated Portugal has the top destination country to live after the global pandemic and it is easy to see why with their stunning weather, vibrant culture and fantastic wines.
What are the proposed changes?
While the government was originally studying proposed changes back at the beginning of the year many industry professionals assumed such changes would be put on hold due to the global pandemic. One change being studied was the removal of the option to purchase properties in Lisbon and Porto as the qualifying investment for Portugal residency.
Surprisingly, we have now received confirmation that they will proceed with the removal of Lisbon and Porto from the Portugal Golden Visa programme.
How does this affect applicants?
For those interested in buying real estate in Lisbon or Porto you must start your application right away to ensure it is submitted before the new regulations take effect. While no definitive date has been announced, we anticipate the changes to be implemented at the beginning of the New Year. While some clients were planning to wait until after the global pandemic, unfortunately, this is no longer an option for those interest in real estate located in Lisbon or Porto.
For clients who are unable to visit, Latitude is well-positioned to assist with remote property viewings, bank account openings and submission of applications and ensure a smooth process under the current regulations.
Clients who are not prepared to move forward at this time will still be able to purchase real estate for the qualifying investment as long as it is located outside of Porto and Lisbon. For these clients, we have fantastic options for EUR 280,000 outside of these two cities.