Title: Residence Permit/Golden Visa
Residence Permit in Greece
A residence permit is a document or a card which allows a foreigner to stay in a foreign country. This permit may be permanent or temporary. A residence permit is determined by the law and may differ from country to country. If you would like to travel to Europe, have free movement, live in Europe, you may apply for a residence permit in Greece. One of the ways to get a residence permit is to buy a property in Greece. This process is also called Golden Visa.
Greek Golden Visa
A golden visa is essentially a residence permit by investment. Greek Law determines the necessary conditions for the application process. People from non-European Union countries may apply for residence permit when they meet these conditions. With this visa, you can have most of the rights -roughly except the right to vote – that a European Union citizen has. Law requires you to buy property or invest in Greece in order to get this visa. The property or properties should worth 250.000 euros or more. There are no limitations for the number of properties. You can apply for a residence permit by buying one or multiple properties. There are also no limitations in terms of the type of property. You can buy an apartment, commercial property, parcel of land, cottage, parking lot, hotel, or other kinds of properties singly or together.
At the end of purchase, you can apply for the residence permit. Residence permit includes the applicant, their marital partner, their own parents, marital partner’s parents, and the children of the couple who are younger than 21. There is no condition of staying in Greece for a residence permit. You can also rent your property. A residence permit is valid until the sale of the properties which were previously bought. In the case of the sale of the properties, the permit is canceled. The card for a residence permit is renewed every five years.
The residence permit with the acquisition of a residence permit does not include a working permit. However, there is no limitation in terms of establishing a company. With your residence permit, you can establish a company and you will be able to work in another company with a bill of the service fee from the company that you established.
Greece is the birthplace of democracy. Western civilizations have their roots in Greece and they adopted many elements from Greek culture including their language, arts, politics, and sports. In addition to this, the Mediterranean climate, fresh and natural foods, turquoise seas, and hospitality make Greece one of the most popular destinations for a vacation in Europe. Greece has been a member of the European Union for almost forty years, the Schengen area since 2000, and the Eurozone since 2001. Greece is a country in which you can live your life in safety with high living standards and where the law is respected.
Buying a Property
Our company will help you to find the property in Greece which is suitable for you. We will show you a number of properties among which you can choose after we inform you about the conditions and values of the properties. Although we always advise you to come to Greece and see the properties with your own eyes, it is possible to do the transaction without your presence through your lawyer with a power of attorney.
After you decide on the property which you want, you will need a tax number and a bank account in Greece. You need to fill two forms to have a tax number. Form M1 is for your personal details and the second is M7 for the Antiklitos. According to the law in Greece, you are supposed to be affiliated with a permanent resident of the country for a tax number. This person who provides communication between you and the tax office is called “Antiklitos”. This operation does not put any financial burden on you or the Antiklitos. Antiklitos’ only responsibility is to inform you when an official document that belongs to you does not reach you. Then you can open a bank account with your tax number and other documents (passport, residence certificate from your home country, statement of income or employment, mobile phone number from a Greek company).
Before the purchase of the property, an engineer inspects the technical quality of the property and a lawyer makes checks about the history of the property with the local authorities such as the Office of Land Registry. The lawyer needs to make sure that the seller is the current owner of the property, there is no annotation on the property, and the current owner paid all the debts attached to the property. If everything is in order and both sides agree, you give your documents to the notary. Every property purchase in Greece is done in front of a notary. Notary prepares the sale contract and both sides along with their lawyers inspect the contract. If the sides have no objection, the sides sign the sale contract in front of the notary and the lawyers. After the signing of the contract, your lawyer should inform the official authorities about the changing hands of the property as soon as possible because in Greece the new owner of a property is not the one who buys it first but the one who informs the authorities first.
All of these operations can be done by your lawyer with a power of attorney. For the transaction, we advise that you use a daily bank cheque from your bank account in Greece. This cheque should be prepared only for the seller with their name and it should be with double lines. Double lines make sure that only the seller can cash this cheque. On the day of the sale, this cheque is given to the notary because the number of the cheque and the amount on it should be added to the contract of sale. It is the safest way and also it will be useful when you apply for a residence permit.
What are the expenses for buying a property?
The expenses while buying a property in Greece:
- Real Estate Transaction Tax %3.09
- Legal Representation Expense %1
- Property Purchase Commission %2
- Notary %1
- Registration of the Property in the Land Registry Office (no stable number, it varies) the most %0.8
All the expenses in total are approximately %8.3-%8.5 of the price that you paid for the property. With the addition of the expenses from the residence permit application, it totals %10 of the price that you paid for the property.
Application for a Residence Permit
After you buy a property and prepare the necessary documents, you need an appointment from the department of immigration. This can be done via email. The department gives an appointment considering their workload and contacts your lawyer or proxy. The Greek government now lets the applicants apply to the branches that have less workload. When you apply, you will receive a temporary residence permit (blue paper). The permanent residence permit takes some time to be issued. Technically you can apply for the residence permit by yourself, but it is better to have a lawyer oversee this process in terms of speed and exactness of the application. We can do and complete all these processes for you with a power of attorney. However, you need to visit the Immigration Office in Greece one time so you can submit your biometric data.
Expenses for the Application:
The expenses related to the preparation of your documents for the application are below.
-Legal representation: 1.000 euros for the investor and 500 euros for the other family members and children under 18 years old.
-Fee to the Greek State: 2016 euros for the investor, 516 euros for the family members who are older than 21 years old, 16 euros for the family members who are younger than 21 years old.
How much is the rent income tax in Greece?
Annual tax for the rent income:
% 15 for the income up to 12.000 euros
% 35 for the income between 12.000 and 35.000 euros
% 45 for the income more than 35.001 euros