Useful things to know when applying for a Non-Lucrative Spanish visa in 2022

Useful things to know when applying for a Non-Lucrative Spanish visa in 2022

The most popular route for many Britons moving to Spain after Brexit is the Non-Lucrative Visa. This visa allows third-country nationals to spend more than 90 days at a time in Spain and get their TIE residency permit, but it does not allow them to work.

Since January 2021 when British nationals started applying for these visas at the Spanish Consulates - in London, Manchester and Edinburgh – there’s been a lot of progress in understanding the requirements from both the consular staff, relocation lawyers and prospective applicants.  For all involved, it was completely new ground, and there have been many reports about people receiving inconsistent advice from the different consulates.

But the good news is that much has been learnt and we can share some insights to help you navigate the process. Here are some things to consider once you’ve understood the basics of the application requirements and process.

Top tips for getting a Spanish visa


  • Booking your in-person appointment. At the London consulate can now be done online. At the time of writing this is not possible in Manchester or Edinburgh.
  • Minimum income requirement. The main applicant is expected to prove an income of around £2,000 per month; with another £500 for any spouse or dependent. Will your pension over this? But it’s become clear that the consulates can be receptive about seeing other forms of income or potential sources of funds.
  • Rental income from a UK property. If you have a buy-to-let home in the UK this can help your cause. But you will need to show documentary proof that you receive the income whilst residing in Spain (because the NLV does not permit income to be earned in Spain).
  • Title deed of your Spanish property. Relocation experts advise clients to take proof that they own a property in Spain even though it’s not a mandatory requirement as it strengthens their application. The fact that you will not be paying rent on a property theoretically lowers your living expenses too.
  • Family with a Spanish home? If your parents or your grown-up children own a home in Spain, there is a chance that they might act as guarantors, suggests Mark McMillan of Sun Lawyers. Seek advice on this, you will need a notarised document.
  • Pension pots you are not using (yet) and dividends. Retirees will show proof of the pension income they are receiving, but if you have another pension that you have not drawn down yet – that is proof of further financial means. But it’s key to present the documentation so the Consulate/Foreigners Office understand it, suggests Melanie Radford of the relocation department of My Lawyer in Spain. Seek advice on this. She says that dividends in the UK can work but you will need to show proof that it’s not in relation to any work activity carried out for the company if you are a director or shareholder of that company.
  • The S1 form – for those of state pension age. If you are in receipt of a UK state pension, the S1 form offers you access to Spanish healthcare on the same basis as the Spanish. This can save you the cost of an annual private healthcare policy, once you have received your TIE card so you can access the social security system.
  • Bank statementsbeware! We have also learnt why applications can be rejected. If bank statements are shown for a current account with a consistent use of an overdraft facility then the application can be rejected on the basis of it suggesting insufficient resources. It’s the same for consistent negative balances in a current account.

There is no better way of finding out more about visas than by visiting our next exhibition; but you can read more about the NLV here.

Find out more: 

Liz Rowlinson