The Portuguese government introduced a Golden Visa for foreign investors. Buyers from China, Russia, the Middle East and elsewhere who spent at least 500,000 euros on property, get a permit that lets them travel freely within Europe’s 26-country Schengen zone without restriction.
The incentives, along with depressed housing prices, are showing the first signs of nibbling at the huge market glut of 3 million empty homes on the Iberian peninsula.
The Portuguese government said last week that 318 permits had been issued since the programme began a year ago, bringing in 200 million euros in investment – most of it in residential property in the last few months – and expected it to reach more than 300 million euros by December. That would exceed an estimated 250 million euros invested in all real estate in Portugal last year according to Cushman&Wakefield consultants.
There’s a growing interest in the golden visa programme, and a lot more of it materialising in actual deals. Last month Marinha Guincho sold a large residential property in Cascais to a private Chinese investor seeking the permit.