At €500,000 the Golden Visa from August 1st

This will be the minimum investment to buy a property in Athens, Mykonos, Thessaloniki and Santorini - €250,000 remains in the rest of Greece



8/12/20234 min read

At €500,000 the Golden Visa from August 1st

Changes to the map of the Greek real estate market are brought about by the new value of the Golden Visa, which prospective investors from third countries from abroad will pay in gold, as from August 1 it increases from 250,000 to 500,000 euros for those who choose to buy real estate in Athens, Thessaloniki , Mykonos and Santorini.

According to information from "business stories" , the Ministry of Finance will ultimately not give another extension to the grace period that ends on July 31, so that they can obtain the Greek Golden Visa under the conditions that were in force from 2013 until today. Now the sales offices in the golden areas such as the Athenian Riviera or Mykonos will only concern foreign investors , who will be willing to allocate at least half a million euros or even more to obtain a Permanent Investor's License in our country.

The data in the real estate market is thus changing drastically, as many small and medium-sized foreign players (from countries such as Turkey, Lebanon or ... champion China, etc.) who in recent years had made a massive landing in Greece are out of the fray for the specific areas real estate market and mainly in the golden fillet areas.

This development overturns the situation in the real estate market throughout the rest of the country, as it shifts to other areas the purchasing interest of those foreign investors who wish to obtain a residence permit in our country. A question that remains to be answered in the near future is whether it can also affect the course of state revenues which had been significantly strengthened as, through this process, direct foreign investments in real estate reached 2 billion euros in 2022, a figure which, according to estimates, is expected to be surpassed this year.

Golden houses

Since September of last year, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis had announced government intervention , mainly because the buying frenzy from abroad had pushed up the sale prices of houses, especially in areas of high demand . Especially for them, the limit of 250,000 euros that was set a decade ago now seemed low, since it was automatically exceeded by buying even a simple apartment in a neighborhood apartment building.

This intervention was implemented in the spring, doubling the required investment/home purchase limit, from 250,000 to 500,000 euros, for specific areas. However, a grace period was given until Monday, July 31 , as well as the possibility during this time for someone to seize the privileges of the Golden Visa by signing pre-purchase agreements and paying immediately just 10% of the value of 250,000 euros, while the rest can be given at a later time.

However, this regime is becoming a thing of the past for these areas, since from August 1 onwards the minimum investment limit is doubled to 500,000 euros. These are the central, southern and northern sectors of Attica, as well as Mykonos, Santorini and the Municipality of Thessaloniki.

Especially in the capital, they will become unapproachable for most foreign buyers:

■ All the areas of the southern suburbs, i.e. the Municipalities of Moschato - Tavros, Kallithea, Palaio Faliro, Nea Smyrni, Elliniko - Argyroupoli, Agios Dimitrios, Alimos and Glyfada.
■ The center of Athens (Municipalities of Athens, Byron, Galatsi, Dafni - Ymitto, Zografou, Ilioupoli, Kaisariani and Philadelphia - Chalkidona).
■ The whole of the northern suburbs, i.e. the Municipalities of Agia Paraskevi, Amarousi, Vrilissi, Heraklion, Kifissia, Lykovrysi - Pefki, Metamorfosis, Nea Ionia, Papago - Cholargo, Penteli, Filothei - Psychiko and Chalandrio.

In fact, it is stipulated that the amount of the investment must concern only one property by paying at least 500,000 euros, and not covering the limit by acquiring two or more properties of lower value.

Practically, however, this also means for all other domestic buyers that, to a certain extent, demand and prices for medium-sized properties, worth 250,000-500,000 euros, are "decompressed" in these areas.

In all other areas, however, where the limit remains at 250,000 euros, investors will continue to have the possibility to purchase more than one property in order to reach the minimum investment limit. In these areas, buying interest may intensify from residents abroad who will direct their funds to other areas - based on their capabilities.


However, concern is expressed if there will be a risk that foreign investors will turn their backs on the Greek Golden Visa . Especially since, in addition to investments in real estate, from January 2024 the minimum amount that someone should invest in term deposits and in the bond market will increase to 500,000 euros , from 400,000 euros which is currently.

However, from the moment it was announced that the "window" would be closed, there was an explosion of buying interest , which led to a more than doubling of Golden Visa applications . In the first five months of 2022, according to data from the Ministry of Immigration, 777 Permanent Investor permits were granted, while this year more than 1,900 rushed in and received a permit.

For 2022, however, according to official data from the Bank of Greece, net inflows from property purchases by foreign investors amounted to 2 billion euros, marking an average annual increase of 68% from 1.1776 billion euros in 2021. And within 2023, the Central Bank has recorded for the first quarter of the year a 42.1% increase in net foreign direct investments in Greece for the purchase of real estate, exceeding half a billion euros, with accelerated growth rates compared to the first quarter. A trend that, if maintained on an annual basis, seems more than capable of leading to investments of more than 2 billion euros, with the BoE analysts commenting that "expectations for the Greek real estate market remain positive despite the rise in interest rates, energy costs and amid inflationary pressures, in an international and European environment of challenges".