“Get expert advice to help you get your visa – it’s money well spent”
Tony Holmes and his wife Sam moved from Ashford in Kent to Javea on the northern Costa Blanca in August 2021. Whilst Sam got a working visa as a teacher Tony and their two children (pictured) were advised to get a non-lucrative visa (NLV) by Sun Lawyers. With the law firm’s help the family are happily settled into their new life in Spain. Here Tony shares their story.
“We had used Sun Lawyers for the property purchase and they put us in touch with their relocation expert, Mark McMillan. We were aware of the golden visa as an alternative but spending €500,000 on our property was a stretch too far, so we decided on the NLV,” says Tony.
“We started the application around two months before our planned departure date – you are required to provide the Spanish consulate in London with a travel date and then you get a slot for your in-person appointment to present all the paperwork. I started gathering all the documents together and Mark helped us every step of the way. If ever there was something I was unsure about, I picked up the phone and he provided a solution.
“Apart from proving financial self-sufficiency (I had to show €48,000 for the three of us for two years) with bank statements, we had to take out private healthcare cover (€1,800 for us all) and provide a police check (ACRO) and medical certificate.
Tips on applying for your NLV
“A little tip here. Make sure your medical certificate is worded exactly as it should be (with the wording translated into Spanish, certified and apostilled). Ours hadn’t been so it was rejected by the consulate but I have to say that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office staff were super helpful in liaising direct with our GP about providing the form of words.
“On our second visit to the consulate we were successful – with only a few days to go – and thankfully we were able to head off to Spain. The delay incurred some extra costs so I would advise anyone embarking on this process to expect to pay a bit more if you need to expedite the application. Paying €350 per person for Sun Lawyers to help us through the purchase no doubt saved us a lot more. The cost of the visa itself was £516 each.
“It was so worth it. We are all so much stronger and happier as a family now we live here, the children are happy in their new schools and I am renovating the house. I have joined the local tennis club and we’ve got a new social life through the school. With the NLV I am not allowed to work so I am thinking of whether I might be able to register as Autonomo (self-employed) in the future. We’ve no regrets and just wish we’d done it sooner.”
Watch our video: Applying for the non lucrative visa