FAQ Residence Permit for Real Estate Owners in Greece

Is it necessary to hire a lawyer to collect the documentation?

There is no legal requirement to collect and process the documents through a lawyer. In cases where the applicant does not speak Greek and/or is located outside of Greece, it may be preferable to ask for the support of a legal representative or proxy, to facilitate the process.

I am not currently in Greece. Do I need to submit the documents in person?

The application process for the initial residence permit, the submission of additional documentation and the receipt of the residence permit or its rejection can be done either in person by the applicant or through a legal proxy. Even if the application in question has been submitted by a proxy, the applicant is required to be in Greece on the date of the application submission.

Who is considered a family member?

According to the law, family members of third-country citizens entering the country are:
a. Spouses who are over the age of 18, as well as unwed children under the age of 18 where there is shared custody, including children who have been adopted
b. Other unwed children under the age of 18, of the other spouse including children who have been adopted, provided that the applicant is their legal guardian.

Can my parents or my children who are over the age of 18, accompany me (both in the cases of strategic investments or in cases of real estate ownership in Greece), and be included in the family provision? What about the children who turn 18 during the period when their parents’ residence permit is valid?

No parents or adult children are included in the provision above. Children who become adults during the period when the residence permit is valid will be granted a separate residence permit.

Are unmarried partners entitled to a residence permit?

The family members do not include unmarried partners.

Can I travel to other countries within the EU with a residence permit for owners of real estate? Are there any conditions related to this?

Yes. The residence permit and long-term visas are valid as far as the free movement of the person in the Schengen area is concerned. Any citizen who holds a long-term visa (such as the residence permits for real estate owners) which has been issued by a member state and are valid for one year are able to travel to other member states for up to 3 months within a six month period, under the same conditions which apply to the holder of a residence permit, while they are also granted a right for multiple entries.

Can the residence permit be considered as a work permit? Can my spouse, the legal representative of my company, my children, or myself, work in Greece?

In no case does the residence permit provide access to any type of employment. Employment, according to paragraph 3, article 36A, of Law 3386/20 0 5, does not include the exercise of economic activity in the capacity of a shareholder or a Chief Executive Officer. The family members that have been issued a residence permit for the same duration as the sponsor are similarly not granted access to the employment market.

Does the residence permit give me the right to apply for citizenship?

The years covered by the residence permit for real estate owners are not taken into account for the required years for the granting of citizenship to residents.

Does the amount of €250,000 include the ValueAdded Tax? What should the value of the investment be if the ownership / sale document includes the name of both spouses?

The amount of €250,000 refers to the price indicated on the contract. In cases of joint ownership of the real estate property by spouses, the residence right is granted to both spouses.

Can I obtain more than one piece of property, the individual value of which is less than €250,000, if the combined value is equal or greater than €250,000?

You are entitled to residency rights irrespective of whether you own one or more properties, provided that their combined value is equal to or greater than €250,000 .

Can I buy commercial property or a combination of commercial and residential properties or land?

The law states that €250,000 must be the stated price on the contract. It does not distinguish between commercial and residential properties.

Are there any restrictions that apply to the real estate market? (e.g. location, size in square meters, or other factors).

There are restrictions on properties located in border regions. It should be noted that as border regions are defined the prefectures of the Dodecanese, Evros, Thesprotia, Kastoria, Kilkis, Lesvos, Xanthi, Preveza, Rodopi, Samos, Florina, Chios, and the islands of Thera and Skyros, as well as the former regions of Nevrokipi in the former prefecture of Drama; Pogoniou and Konitsas in the prefecture of Ioannina; Almopia and Edessa in the prefecture of Pella; and Sintiki in the prefecture of Serres. Individual or legal entities, which are affected by the restrictions above, can request the lifting of the ban for the border regions, along with their application, which should clearly state the intended use for the property. The decision to lift the ban is made by the Minister of Defence, following the submission of an application.

Can I travel to Schengen countries directly, after my residence permit has been issued, from my country, or do I need to first come to Greece?

You can arrive in any Schengen country you wish to.

What is the arrangement regarding the access to education and health services? Can the children of the residence permit holder attend a Greek public school?

The holders of the residence permit have access to public education, analogously to that of Greeks. Regarding access to health services, third-country citizens and their family members who fall under the regulations of the current law, must have insurance that covers their healthcare and medical care expenses.

Can I purchase a car with Greek license plates for my transportation needs in the country?

Yes, under the specific regulations of the Ministry of Transport, which apply to third-country citizens.

Can I take a mortgage out on the property in order to receive a loan?

You can take a mortgage out on the property, in the same way as Greeks.

Is it required of the buyer to prove the source of their income?

The income of the applicant must be proven by documentation which proves their capacity (e.g. Certificate by class-A certified bank or an official financial institution or other recognised institutions to store bonds) and certify the existence of bank accounts or other transferable securities, especially shares or bonds.

If 8 third-country citizens jointly buy a property for €2.000.000, are all the joint owners entitled to a residence permit?

Yes, provided that the amount invested by each one is €250.000.

What happens in the cases where someone tarnishes their criminal record, either in their country of origin or in Greece, during the period of when their residence permit is valid?

This leads to the revocation of the residence permit.

If someone holds a long-term Visa for a different Schengen country, does this Visa need to be cancelled to obtain a type D visa in Greece?

A Schengen visa by a different country gives the applicant the ability to enter Greece and settle issues regarding the purchase of the property. The type D visa is necessary for the application process as prescribed by the current law, so it is recommended that applicants obtain a type D visa in advance. A medical certificate must be submitted to the consulate in the country of origin of the applicant in order to obtain a type D Visa.

Does the applicant also need to undergo an additional medical examination in Greece in order to submit their application for the residence permit?

Third-country citizens who enter the country with a type D Visa, which has been issued in accordance with article 36 A of Law 3386/2005, are exempt from the requirement to submit a medical certificate in order to obtain the residence permit, but they provide a certified and translated copy of the equivalent medical certificate which they have already filled with the relevant consulate in their country of origin in order to obtain the type D Visa 

Is it possible to rent the real estate property to thirdparties?

Third-country citizens who own real estate have the right to rent their property.