Greece Doubles the Investment Requirement for the Golden Visa. According to an amendment tabled in Parliament on Wednesday, Greece will raise the minimum value of property required to qualify for a Golden Visa to 500,000 euros ($532,000) in certain parts of the country.

The new minimum purchase value will apply to the country’s north part, the central and southern sectors of Athens in the Attica Region, the islands of Mykonos and Santorini, and the Municipality of Thessaloniki.

It also applies to the total agreed-upon price of contracts for the lease of hotel accommodation or furnished tourist residences in these areas, which must be paid in full before an investor can apply for a permanent residence permit.

According to Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, this was done because investors were snapping up Greek properties, particularly in Athens, driving Greeks out and raising rents.

The price of a golden visa for the rest of Greece will remain at 250,000 euros.

The amendment clarifies that the above investment is for the purchase of a single property, whereas in the case of joint property ownership, the minimum value of the ownership share must be 500,000 euros, again for the purchase of a single property.

For the rest of the country, the previous minimum value of 250,000 euros will continue to qualify for an investor permanent residence permit, also known as the Golden Visa.

Third-country nationals who already have a permanent residence permit for investors can renew it for the same period of time as long as they own or have possession of the property. However, the absence from the country should not cause any issues. Furthermore, third-country nationals who own property in Greece may lease it.

The Golden Visa is issued within two months of the application and supporting documents being submitted.

Third-country citizens will have until December 31, 2023 to complete contracts in the areas where the upper limits will be changed.

Golden visa demand skyrocketed in 2022

According to Bank of Greece data, capital inflows from abroad for the purchase of real estate in Greece totaled 414.4 million euros during the second quarter of the year. This represents a 67 percent increase over the same time period last year.

Foreign investors prefer apartments in Athens’ center, quality constructions along the Athens Riviera, and luxurious country houses in popular tourist areas.

Foreign capital inflows into Greece increased by 61% year on year to 788 million euros in the first half of 2022, compared to 488 million in the same period the previous year.

Analysts believe that based on the current pace and the fact that real estate investment activity is traditionally strongest in the second half of each year, a new record will be set in 2022.