Written by Scarlett Murray,
7th March 2023

Beloved spots like Mykonos and Santorini are increasing their minimum spend to qualify for a Golden Visa to €500,000. But the great news is that most of the country, including Corfu and Crete, will retain the €250,000 real estate minimum. Find out where in Greece you can still get your hands on a Golden Visa with a budget of €250,000.  

Gorgeous Crete retains a €250,000 property spend for a Golden Visa there.



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Where is the minimum spend rising to €500,000?

From May 1st, Greece have increased the minimum spend to receive their Golden Visa from €250,000 to €500,000 in the central and south sectors of Athens in the Attica Region, the islands of Mykonos and Santorini and the municipality of Thessaloniki. It should be noted that there will be a grace period for people who put the deposit down before the end of April and apply for a Golden Visa before December – they will still be able to obtain a Golden Visa with €250,000 spend in the highlighted areas.

If you cannot make that deadline, do not be disheartened. For, the majority of the country will still have a €250,000 minimum spend for a Golden Visa. The Golden Visa is as residency by investment scheme. It offers visa-free travel within Europe’s Schengen Area, residence for the whole family, and eligibility for citizenship after seven years.

But I was dreaming of a home in Mykonos…

It may be that after multiple holidays to Mykonos, you had set your sights on purchasing a property there, worth €250,000 to get a Golden Visa. But with the rule change puts an abrupt halt to those plans.

We understand, it’s a steep increase! And you may not be able to budget for a home twice the cost that you were originally looking at. The great news is that you can keep your search within Greece, you’ll just need to look outside of the areas that have seen the price increase. Indeed, this is an opportunity to explore up-and-coming areas of Greece to own a home in.

Here is a run-down of some of the fabulous locations in Greece that are excluded from the minimum spend increasing to €500,000. Meaning, to own a property there that will qualify you for a Golden Visa, you need €250,000.



Fancy Halkidiki?

If you had your eyes on Thessaloniki, a home in Halkidiki might soften the loss, as it is just an hour away. Halkidiki is a verdant peninsula on the northern side of the country. It is divided into three “legs”: Kassandra, Sithonia and Athos. All sixty-two of the beaches in Halkidiki are beautiful but the ones in Kassandra are the most user-friendly while the beaches in the second peninsula are more secluded and designed for camping. With a terrain of clifftops and forests, Halkidiki is a popular choice for jeep tours, horse-riding, and mountain biking. In terms of sight-seeing, there’s the impressive Mount Athos, though if you are a woman, it will really just be sightseeing, as women are not allowed inside, and men can only go in with special permission. However, all are welcome to do some contemplative brooding in Aristotle Park, with its dedicated statue and memorabilia.

For a €250,000 Golden Visa property in Halkidiki, this will get you a two to four bedroom maisonette, townhouse or villa. It is possible to even find a sparkling new villa in a residential complex with amenities such as access to tennis courts and a swimming pool.



The white-washed port of Naoussa.

Being situated between Mykonos and Santorini, it’s surprising that Paros hasn’t also seen the €500,000 price increase. Like Mykonos and Santorini, it is a beautiful and pleasure-filled spot. If it is the aesthetic of white-washed houses with blue roofs that you so love, then you will adore Naoussa. It has been developed as a tourist destination while retaining the picturesque charm of a fishing village from long ago. On August 23rd, they have a festivity where pirate raids are re-enacted, food and drink are served freely, and fireworks light up the sky until morning. It’s also home to Kolimbithres beach, which is distinct for its huge blocks of granite that have been smoothed over centuries. It also has sandy coves that you can find vacant and enjoy a private swim in. Meanwhile, Golden Beach hosts an international annual wind-surfing competition.

Property can be pricy in Paros. This is maybe somewhere to look at owning a home if you are after a Golden Visa for real estate that is over €250,000 but is not €500,000. For €250,000 you are looking at a one or two bedroom home.



Maybe your Greece home-owning dreams lie in Greece?

Crete is another cherished destination that will be retaining the €250,000 minimum spend. With pleasant to warm weather from April to October, there is plenty of opportunity for appreciating the sea. Balos Beach is especially praised, with water of greens and blues, and sand that is flecked with pink; here, you can find Eleanora falcons, Mediterranean monk seal, and sea turtles. For summer fun, the cosmopolitan resort of Agios Nikolas will be your go-to. Crete is a treat for historians with its architecture possessing influences from the Arabs, the Venetians, the Ottomans.

Crete is the largest of Greece’s islands and this means that there is plenty to choose from property-wise. With €250,000 you could find a two to four bedroom property. Usually, the two beds will be in a relatively newly built, possibly in a resort, or have their own private pool. A four-bedroom might be less centrally located and have fewer modern touches, but still, it could suit you perfectly.



Beautiful Corfu.

The Queen of the Ionian Islands, Corfu is a lush and beautiful location. It is home to more than two million olive trees and 215km of coastline. It has an enthralling history, and its architecture wears the coats of the French, Venetians, and the English. Indeed, the Palace of Saint Michael and George is the only Georgian style palace outside of the UK. Paleokastritsa beach boasts of a diving club and more watersports while Myriotissa beach works well if you like to swim in the nude – so Corfu has every type of beach you could want.

It is not hard to find a two to four bedroom house with a starting price of €250,000 in Corfu.

As you can see, even if the central and south sectors of Athens in the Attica Region, the islands of Mykonos and Santorini and the municipality of Thessaloniki are now out of reach for you because you would need a €500,000 property to obtain a Golden Visa, there are still plenty of places to choose from. The ones I have picked here are by no means exhaustive – there’s Thassos, Palairos, Lesbos, Chois….

Beware of the changes to Greece’s Golden Visa

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