The Portugal Golden Visa program offers a myriad of opportunities to acquire permanent residency or citizenship. Since its inception in 2012, these investment options have evolved and expanded. The increased choices provide investors more opportunities to fulfill investment requirements to obtain the visa. More options mean investors can find the investment that fits their needs and lifestyle.
Portugal Golden Visa investment options include the most common €350K real estate purchase, capital transfer, investment in business/fund, job creation or donation as low as €250K.
Investment Options Overview
The opportunities through the Portugal Golden Visa investment program are vast and varying. There are options to satisfy all types of investors with selections in real estate, business ventures, donations, and capital transfer. Though real estate has been the primary investment choice in years past, the other opportunities are gaining traction.
The Portugal Golden Visa investment types include:
Purchase of real estate with a value of at least €500,000 EUR;
Purchase of real estate with a value of at least €400,000 EUR. This 20% reduced property investment option has the same requirements as the €500K EUR investment but must be made in a low-density area;
Purchase of real estate with a value of at least €350,000 EUR that was constructed 30+ years ago or is located in an urban rehabilitation area. The value must include not only the property price but also the cost of refurbishment works;
Purchase of real estate with a value of at least €280,000 EUR. This 20% reduced property investment option has the same requirements as the €350K EUR investment but must be made in a low-density area.
Invest capital of at least €350,000 EUR in an existing Portuguese business where five new full-time jobs are maintained for a minimum of 3 years;
Invest capital of at least €350,000 EUR in a qualifying private equity fund or Portugal Golden Visa venture capital fund aimed at providing capital to companies that meet certain requirements.
Transfer of capital of at least €1,000,000 EUR to a Portuguese bank account.
Financial contribution of at least €250,000 EUR in preserving national heritage in Portugal or support for artistic production;
Financial contribution of at least €350,000 EUR in a public or private research & development institution that is part of the national scientific or technological system in Portugal.
Creation of at least 10 full-time jobs in Portugal;
Creation of at least 8 full-time jobs in Portugal if the business or single-member company is located in a low-density area;
The Golden Visa investment needs to be performed by the main applicant as an individual. The only exception is the transfer of capital of at least €1,000,000 EUR. With that capital the main applicant can establish a Portuguese company and the company can make investments on behalf of the investor with that capital.
Purchase of Real Estate
Property investment in Portugal is an attractive opportunity as the real estate market outlook appears optimistic. Whether you would be investing in a vacation home, full-time home, or rental property, the time to buy property in Portugal is now.
There are a couple of options for obtaining the Golden Visa through Portugal property investment. These options include investments ranging from €280,000 EUR to €500,000 EUR. The minimum amount for each opportunity must be met to qualify for the investment. However, you may purchase more than one home to meet the minimum. All property types (land, property under construction or fully built) qualify.
For all property investment options, it is also possible for two purchasers to qualify for the minimum investment on the same property. For instance, two friends may opt to purchase a larger home for one million euros. In this case, they both qualify as long as they split the purchase evenly at €500,000 EUR each.
Property Investment €500,000 EUR
The property investment of €500,000 EUR has the least amount of restrictions. An investor must acquire real estate worth €500,000 EUR in Portugal. This property may serve as a home for you or rental property. With this option, you may purchase a newly built or existing property.
When considering a property in a low-density area in Portugal, the minimum investment amount drops 20% to €400,000 EUR. This is an ideal opportunity for acquiring a property in a quickly developing part of the country before demand increases.
Property Investment €350,000 EUR
The Portugal Golden Visa €350K EUR investment has a few restrictions compared to the aforementioned property option. To qualify for this investment, the home purchased must be 30+ years old or in an urban rehabilitation area, and total spend between purchase and renovations must meet or exceed €350,000 EUR.
The renovation project would need to be approved by Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) as qualifying for the reduced investment amount. It is important to ensure that legal advice is obtained from an experienced professional before embarking on such investment.
Many locations are low-density and offer beauty, diversity, and culture. Low density areas are defined as areas with less than 100 inhabitants per square km and the GDP per capita is less than 75% of Portugal’s average.
Currently some of the most popular areas for Golden Visa property investment are Lisbon, Algarve (Faro and Vilamoura), Aveiro, Viseu, Viana do Castelo, and a few neighborhoods in Porto and Coimbra.
However, according to new legislation coming into effect on 1st of January, 2022, your new property can only be located in a low density areas, such as Douro Valley, and Peneda Geres.
One of the Portugal Golden Visa business investment opportunities is the creation of ten full-time jobs. This is the lowest-cost investment option to qualify you for the Portugal Golden Visa. If the roles reside in low-density areas, then the qualification may lower to eight full-time jobs.
Employees pay an 11% rate on their salary, and Portuguese companies pay 23.75% of gross wages to social security.
An in-demand field includes the tourism industry with roles like caterers, hotel staff, guides, and restaurant staff. Other jobs include call-center workers, IT staff, nurses and doctors, and other professional services personnel.
If entrepreneurship or owning a small business is of interest to you, then this business investment opportunity is a worthwhile venture. The total amount invested can be as low as €100,000 EUR.
Another Portugal business investment visa option is to invest a minimum of €350,000 EUR in an existing Portuguese business. This business must create a minimum of five new full-time jobs and maintain them for at least three years.
A simple choice for a venture is another Portugal Golden Visa capital investment type. The transfer of capital amounting to €1,000,000 EUR to Portugal may qualify you for the Golden Visa. You may transfer the funds into a bank account in Portugal or invest in Portuguese business, equity funds, or government bonds.
Invest capital in an existing Portuguese business
If you own a business in your home country and wish to expand its frontiers, the golden visa through capital investment in Portuguese business is for you.
As an investor, you can decide to open any type of business you want in Portugal and in any location, while also making a living instead of relying on savings. As with all businesses, the best course of action is to research the area you are interested in and get an understanding of the local economy and what they need. You will also need to become familiar with the local laws so as to not get into any legal trouble while also understanding the culture.
Portuguese Fund Subscription
A Portugal Golden Visa investment fund subscription is one of the simplest ways to invest. This option is newer, but it is gaining momentum in popularity among investors.
This popularity is rooted in the qualifying fund minimum and ease of acquisition. The minimum investment amount for this option is €350,000 EUR. Acquiring index funds is a simple process that can be completed in minimal time. You may save time and money by investing in Portuguese index funds.
These funds will fall into the categories of traditional venture capital funds and private equity funds. There are also options directly designed for Golden Visa investors. These funds accept the minimum investment of €350,000 EUR, have a length matching the program, and offer assistance with the Golden Visa process.
The types of funds are continually changing. However, there are typically index funds available in sectors like industrial, energy, real estate, and technology. These funds are managed by corporate experts who invest in start-ups or medium-size projects with growth potential.
Though managed by experts, due diligence is expected by the investor by reviewing credentials for fund strategy, management history, and legal contracts. You should also weigh your level of risk tolerance and choose a venture that matches your desired outcomes.
As a final note, not all venture funds are eligible for the Golden Visa. Seek legal advice or consult an expert before investing.
Comparison Real Estate vs. Funds
After rising by 1.6% and 0.5% in the first and second quarters of 2020 respectively, compared to previous quarters, house prices in Portugal continue to rise during the COVID-19 pandemic: prices rose by 1% between July and September compared to the previous three months, to €2,090 EUR/m2. In annual terms, compared to the third quarter of 2019, the increase amounts to 5.5%, according to the idealista price index.
Donation: Investments in Portuguese Heritage & Research
As part of the Portugal investor immigration program, you may choose to invest in Portuguese heritage. This investment is a donation in preserving the national legacy. The minimum investment is €250,000 EUR.
This is an option for those that are interested in conserving existing heritage and supporting cultural expansion. Ventures include supporting the arts, reconstruction/rehabilitation of national monuments and buildings, and investment in public foundations, public institutions, and local corporate sector organizations.
As a Portugal investor visa applicant, another option available is the donation of funds to research in Portugal. This investment must equate to €350,000 EUR in a research and development activity. It can be made to a public or private research and development institution that is in the national scientific and technological system in Portugal.
FAQs About Portugal Golden Visa Investment Options
1. What types of investments qualify for the Golden Visa?
The Portugal immigration investment program offers numerous options for investment. These options range from job creation, index funds, real estate property purchase/rehabilitation, capital transfer, capital investment into existing Portuguese business and donations to Portuguese heritage and research.
2. What is the most common type of investment?
The most common type of investment is in real estate. It has long been the most popular selection. This is due in part to the affordable properties for sale available in beautiful coastal and city areas. These homes may be used for leisure by the owner or as a rental property to accrue revenue.
3. Can a loan be taken out to fund your Golden Visa investment in Portugal?
Yes, a loan can be taken out to fund your investment. However, it cannot be issued from a Portuguese financial institution. The funds must come from a non-Portuguese bank.