May 8, 2024

Spain to end Golden Visa Program


Spain has made the decision to end the Golden Visa scheme that grants residency rights for up to three years to foreigners who make substantial investments in Spanish real estate. In a move to prioritise their own citizens access to affordable housing, Spain will discontinue the scheme.

Spain golden visa working team


What has changed?

The Spanish Golden Visa currently awards non-EU citizens investing at least 500,000 EURO (mortgage free) in Spanish real estate a special residence permit enabling them to live and work in Spain for up to three years. The Spanish authorities now intend to terminate the visa meaning new applicants will need to access another route for residency. Alternative options include other visa programs, work permits or investment opportunities in line with Spain’s new policies.

Individuals holding an existing Golden Visa should not be impacted and should continue to benefit from the visa’s residency rights for the duration of the issued validity. However, it is wise to monitor any potential change to these circumstances.

The visa is being discontinued as part of Spain’s efforts to make affordable housing “a right instead of a speculative business” according to Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez. Furthermore, he stated that “major cities are facing a highly stressed market and where its almost impossible to find decent housing for those who live, work and pay taxes there”.

As yet no legal process to terminate the visa has been started and it is likely that any change will take several months to come into effect.

Who is affected?

For now the Spanish authorities continue to accept applications, however the end of the Golden Visa scheme will impact future foreign investors looking to obtain short term residency in Spain. From 2013 to 2022 Spain issued almost 5,000 Golden Visa permits with top numbers of investors including applicants from China and Russia. The discontinuance is also likely to impact British nationals for whom the scheme was popular as it enabled them to remain in Spain without the usual restrictions for non-EU nationals. 

What you need to do

For further information on Spanish residency options, please contact the Sterling Lexicon immigration team at


Leanne Cottrell

Leanne Cottrell

As Head of Immigration with Sterling Lexicon, Leanne leads a team of specialists who are responsible for ensuring the entire immigration process is smooth and stress-free for clients, assignees and their accompanying family members. She brings over ten years of experience in strategic immigration management, planning and consultation to her role, and has cultivated invaluable knowledge and experience in processing countless global migration applications. As a trusted partner, she consults with clients on everything from policy considerations and cost or efficiency improvements, to the impact of opening offices in new locations. Leanne is a frequent presenter and author on global immigration topics and trends.

Related Posts