Revealed: The most popular locations for ‘golden visa’ homebuyers in Spain – including the Costa del Sol

THESE are the most popular locations for ‘golden visa’ homebuyers in Spain, including this Costa del Sol region.

Since 2013, many foreigners have come to Spain under the so-called ‘golden visa’. 

Introduced to attract investment in the Spanish economy and real estate sector, the scheme granted residency to anyone who purchased a property of €500,000 or more. 

The mechanism also applied to investments of more than €1 million in deposits or shares of Spanish capital companies, or more than €2 million in government bonds.

Pedro Sanchez has vowed to end golden visas. Photo: Cordon Press

READ MORE: Spain to end golden visas that grant residency to foreigners who buy a €500,000 home

Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, recently pledged to end the scheme after it was criticised for causing price inflation and allowing ‘dirty money’ to enter the economy. 

But where did the golden visa reign supreme? 

Just three cities received 70% of golden visa investments: Malaga, Barcelona and Madrid. 

The Catalan capital received the majority of applications, constituting 33% of granted visas. 

Madrid was next with 19%, followed by Malaga with 18%. 

Other areas such as Alicante, the Balearic Islands and Valencia have also seen much investment from the scheme. 

Since its creation, the golden visa has attracted some 14,576 investors, mainly from China and Russia. 

READ MORE: Ending the golden visa in Spain is a ‘big blow’ to British and US buyers, say property experts – as political leaders brand it ‘senseless’ and ‘anti-business’

The decision to eliminate golden visas comes after a report was released revealing that the system was making housing unattainable for locals. 

Isabel Rodriguez, the Minister for Housing said that the investment created ‘tension in the market and increased the price of housing’. 

Although the report suggested the decision to retire the scheme would do little to lower housing prices nationwide, Rodriguez maintained it would alleviate pressure in the high impact areas. 

It comes after the European Union introduced stricter measures on schemes granting residency in exchange for investments. 

Ireland and Portugal have eliminated their versions of the visas, while other countries have maintained their permissions. 

Now, Spanish lawmakers are hoping for a more ‘balanced’ strategy to manage foreign investment in the Spanish real estate market.

READ MORE: Real estate agents say scrapping of Golden Visa will cause ‘irreparable’ economic damage to Spain’s Costa Blanca

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