The investor needs access to the EU
Ole and Inger are former biathletes from Norway. In 2021, they ended their successful sports career. Ole could no longer compete due to numerous injuries. Inger wanted to have a family and devote herself entirely to raising a child in the future.
The ex-biathletes wanted to move to a southern EU country and live by the sea to improve their health in a maritime climate and with the help of advanced modern EU medicine.
As EEA nationals, Ole and Inger can stay in an EU country for three months as tourists. To stay longer in an EU country, they are to be employed, self-employed, a posted worker, a student or have enough funds to support themselves.
Ole and Inger did not want to engage in bureaucracy: from time to time to provide an EU country’s authorities with proof that they have the right to long-term stay in a country. Moreover, they did not want to repeat the process after leaving a country and coming back again.
The couple wanted to go to Norway at any time without worrying that they might lose their EU long-term stay permit.
To speed up and facilitate the process of moving to an EU country, the couple decided obtain residence permits by investment.
The investor turns to a licensed agent: why Immigrant Invest
According to government citizenship and residence by investment programs’ rules, an investor can apply for a program only through a licensed agent. On behalf of an investor, an agent contacts a program’s authorities and applies the documents for Due Diligence.
Due Diligence is the key stage in a program. If an investor passes it, they obtain citizenship or a residence permit. If an investor is refused, the way to other investment programs can be closed.
So, much of the responsibility for an investor’s successful outcome lies with a licensed agent. Since it is an agent who submits documents for Due Diligence. However, there is always a risk of rejection, as the final decision remains with a program’s authorities.
Ole and Inger have chosen Immigrant Invest. On the Internet, they discovered that Immigrant Invest conducts preliminary Due Diligence.
The preliminary Due Diligence at Immigrant Invest helps eliminate possible risks and identify a list of suitable programs for an investor. The check is carried out before signing a contract with an investor and takes one workday.
Also, Ole and Inger liked that Immigrant Invest has been checked and accredited by the EU’s citizenship and residence permit programs. The licences confirm it.
On 21 January 2022, the couple contacted Immigrant Invest.
The lawyers from our internal compliance department found no issues preventing Ole and Inger from participating in a program: no criminal record or visa denials, and they have no tax debts. They have a legal source of income for the investment contribution under a program. The Immigrant Invest team was 99% confident that any citizenship program would approve Ole and Inger’s application.
Head of the Legal Department, lawyer, PhD in Law
The investor chooses an investment program
Ole and Inger’s goal was to get a residential status in a southern EU country by the sea. Moreover, the couple were interested in programs with the possibility of investing in real estate, as they wanted their own house in an EU country. Their budget was €300,000.
Under the couple’s budget, four programs allowed the couple to obtain a residential status in the EU by investing in the country’s real estate.
Greece residence permit, or in other words, the Greece Golden Visa, requires €250,000 — an investor has seven options to choose from. Six of them are related to the purchase or rental of real estate.
Portugal residence permits offer an investor seven options. Under the supporting country’s culture and art option, the minimum investment amount is €250,000. The option of real estate purchasing requires €280,000.
Malta residence permit is obtained by renting real estate for €8,750 per year or buying it for €220,000. Under the Maltese residence permit program’s terms, the investor becomes a tax resident of Malta and cannot spend more than 183 days a year in any other country.
Malta permanent residence is obtained by renting real estate for €50,000 for five years or buying it for €300,000, pays government fees and contributions in the amount of €98,000, and donates €2,000 to a charitable organisation. Also, an investor should have a capital of at least €500,000, of which at least €150,000 must be liquid financial assets.
How did the investor was choosing an investment program
|Residential status in Europe||Costs under a buying real estate option for a family of two||Visa-free Schengen Area||EU citizenship|
|Greece residence permit||€277,750||After 7 years|
|Portugal residence permits||€311,586||After 5 years|
|Malta residence permit||€326,100||After 5 years|
|Malta permanent residence||€374,800||After 5 years|
Ole and Inger chose the Greece Golden Visa as it is the less expensive program in the EU that allows getting status by investing in housing the investor can immediately move into.
Moreover, in Greece, real estate prices are lower. For €250,000, the investor can buy a two or even three-room modern business-class apartment and immediately move into it. In Portugal, investors can only purchase a share in the hotel for this money.
The costs differ dramatically not only at the level of investment but also in the associated costs. For example, for a residence permit card in Portugal, the fee is €5,340, and for a residence permit card in Greece — only €80. But the card is renewed every 2—3 years. The same goes for the cost of living and medicine. Greece is less expensive than other European countries. In addition, Greece is a warm country with a sea.
A former biathlete champion
If Ole and Inger live in Greece for five years, they can get permanent residence. After another two years, they can apply for citizenship in Greece.
Greece allows its citizens to have multiple passports, as does Norway. Ole and Inger will not have to give up their Norway citizenship.
The investor buys real estate to get a Greece residence permit
1. Choosing real estate. Immigrant Invest Real Estate Chief Operations Officer Natalia Oganesyan selected ten suitable properties for the couple. Ole and Inger wanted to have an apartment by the sea.
We offered the investor apartments in the prosperous and prestigious neighbourhood of Athens. The objects differ in value — the farther from the south and central parts of Athens, the cheaper the real estate. Before offering the investor objects for consideration, our lawyers checked the developers’ reliability and the objects’ legal purity.
Real Estate Chief Operations Officer, RICS certified professional
Ole and Inger chose a new two-bedroom apartment worth €250,000, just five minutes walk to the sea. The residential complex has a swimming pool, recreational facilities, restaurants, parking space, storage room and garden.
The complex is in a modern area in southwestern Athens, just fifteen minutes from shopping centres and sports facilities. The site is well known for its excellent environment, fresh air and green surroundings.
2. Obtaining a taxpayer identification number and opening a bank account in Greece are mandatory requirements under the Greece Golden Visa program. An investor can get a taxpayer number in Greece in person or remotely by power of attorney. An account in a Greece bank can be opened in person only.
Ole chose a remote way to get a taxpayer number. He signed a power of attorney for Immigrant Invest lawyers to act on his behalf in Greece. The lawyers apostilled power of attorney and sent it to Greece.
Under a power of attorney, the Immigrant Invest lawyer from the Greece office obtained an individual taxpayer number for Ole.
Ole went to the National Bank of Greece in Athens to open a bank account. In the bank, the Immigrant Invest lawyer has submitted the necessary documents to open an account for the investor, and Ole submitted biometrics and signed the documents.
3. Buying real estate. When Immigrant Invest lawyers checked the legality of the purchase and sale agreement, Ole signed it. Then, the lawyers submitted the contract for registration in the Real Estate Register to receive a registration certificate for the investor in Greece.
Along with signing the documents, Ole transferred €250,000 from his Greece bank account to the developer’s account. The real estate purchase tax was 10%. Immigrant Invest lawyers checked the legality of the transaction.
€277,910 — the investor’s costs for the purchase of real estate under the Greece Golden Visa program
The investor applies for a Greece residence permit
1. Document preparation. Immigrant Invest lawyers filled out the forms with personal data for Ole and Inger and collected all the necessary documents:
- application in two copies;
- contract for the sale of real estate;
- four recent colour passport photographs;
- a certified copy of a valid passport or travel documents recognised in Greece, provided, where required, a valid visa;
- receipt of payment of state fee;
- sample digital signature;
2. Submitting the documents and the biometrics data is carried out in the Greece Department of Migration Policy of the Ministry of Internal Affairs on the same day.
Ole and Inger arrived at Greece Migration Department on the appointed day to take fingerprints while Immigrant Invest lawyers submitted the documents there.
The Greek authorities study the submitted documents, decide on issuing residence permits, and print residence cards for about two months.
The investor obtains residence permits in the EU
On 22 July 2022, the Greece Ministry of Immigration notified Immigrant Invest lawyers of Ole and Inger’s application approval.
Investors can obtain a residence permit card or entrust a lawyer to get it for them. Upon receipt of documents for a residence permit, a lawyer presents the investor’s foreign passport and a certificate of submission of documents for a residence permit
Head of the Sales Department
The Immigrant Invest lawyer from the Greece office picked up the couple’s residence permit cards under a power of attorney. Ole and Inger got their Greek residence cards valid for five years at a convenient address two days later.
6 months to obtain a residence permit in Greece
The investor’s future with the Greece Golden Visa
Ole and Inger are ready to move to Greece and reside there. They are glad that the residential complex where they bought an apartment has many different recreational facilities nearby. So they can keep fit and improve their health.
The couple plans to go to Norway on big holidays such as Christmas or their parents’ birthdays. With the Greece Golden Visa, they are not bound by the rules of staying in the country. They can move to another country they want and come back to Greece anytime.