Not all consulates post a specific number but this chart from the Spanish Consulate in Los Angeles will serve as a guide regardless of where you’re applying.
You’ll need the equivalent in US dollars of:
2,130 euros per month for the main applicant (25,560 euro annually)
533 euros per month for each dependent applicant (6390 euro annually)
If you’re in the fortunate position to be sitting on a big stock pile of cash or other guaranteed source of provable income that you get just by having a pulse, great. Print off and translate a bunch of bank statements and you’re be good to go. Not your case? Bear in mind the following:
These numbers represent the minimum?funds you must possess – the consulate always has the right to ask for more. I know of one family who, during their application appointment, were told by the consulate officer that they needed to provide double?the then published minimum and prove it within 24 hours. In other words, this couple had one day to convert about $50,000 in invested assets into cash and come back to the consulate with statements in hand showing they’d done so. Hopefully stories like this are rare, but you wouldn’t want that to you be if the market is on down day. Plan ahead and ideally provide paperwork that exceeds those minimum amounts.
Unless you’re proving your financial means via a contract that expressly states you will be receiving a salary while working remotely (more on that below), you’ll be showing your sufficient funds in the form of non-working income sources – savings, investments, annuities, salary while on sabbatical, etc. The consulate will want to see that those investments can be turned into cold hard cash for your use while in Spain. Many other Live Abroad Dreamers I’ve met here achieved this by setting up a CD ladder totaling the annual required amount divided into individual CDs each coming due monthly or quarterly throughout their time abroad. Do you need start moving money now to coordinate maturity dates with your desired dates in Spain? Plan ahead.
Most consulates will want to see at least the last three months (and possibly as far back as twelve months) of your checking or savings account statements, regardless of whether those are the accounts holding your funds you’re using as proof. Does your income ebb and flow through the year??Plan ahead to make sure your closing statements for the months in question are going to look pretty on paper.
Speaking of paper, which is really what matters most here, if you’re depending as part of your proof on income that goes straight into your checking account – for example, rental real estate income – you might start thinking now about how to create a contract, financial statement, business operating agreement or the like that qualifies those deposits and will make it easier for the application processors to see it for what is it – a reliable source of ongoing income.
Do not plan to use copies of your tax returns or other US tax related documentation. The Spanish won’t be able to make heads or tails of our tax forms, just as the American government wouldn’t with theirs.
Finally, for those of you hoping to work while you’re here for a company based outside of Spain – the D.C. Consulate is the only one to expressly state permission for this. Demonstrate the work relationship clearly with a copy of your contract and if necessary a letter from your boss or HR department written on company letterhead expressly stating your contract and salary remains in force during your intended stay in Spain. If the company you’re working for is your own, make sure its clear you’re running a legitimate business and that you can operate it remotely (Articles of Incorporation for example, plus a letter from your accountant or financial officer). Finally, even if your virtually earned income meets or exceeds the posted amounts, I’d bring statements proving savings meeting those minimum numbers anyway. Better to be safe than sorry.