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Residency by investment – Global country list

If you're considering moving or investing abroad, there’s no need to think small. In an age when the entire world is at your fingertips, you can easily select any country in the world to live or invest in. The good news is that not all countries have strict immigration policies, and many of them incentivize you to become a resident through special programs

Keep reading and discover some of the most popular countries and their residency by investment programs.

“Residency by investment” – what is it, how does it work?

Through investment in the local economy, most often in either business or property, or both, individuals can obtain a residence permit or even citizenship in many countries around the world. Countries offer “residency by investment” programs to encourage foreign investment and boost their economies. As far as benefits and requirements go, these programs vary greatly.

In order to qualify, you typically need to invest in businesses (existing or new), real estate, bonds, etc., you must have a clean criminal record and sufficient financial resources (acquired legally). In some cases, you are required to keep the investment for a set period of time or meet the minimum stay requirements. 

In what ways can a residency by investment benefit you?

By obtaining residency through a country's residency by investment program, you are entitled to many benefits and privileges, including:

  • a temporary or permanent residency permit (renewable), for you and your family, usually leading to citizenship

  • the possibility to explore new business opportunities, take advantage of favorable business conditions, tax-free policies and benefits 

  • the freedom to travel without visa restrictions, unrestricted access to a number of countries

  • the option to work and live in a country with a stable economy, social environment and politics (extremely important, especially in the midst of the current world turmoil)

  • a higher standard of living and access to better or free education, healthcare, infrastructure, etc.

When applying for the program, what do you need?

For most "residency by investment" programs, you need the following documentation:

  • application form

  • photograph

  • valid passport

  • document accrediting legal entry and stay in the country

  • documents accrediting the investment and financial means

  • clean criminal record certificate

  • health insurance 

  • proof of payment of the visa fee

Comparative tables

With so many countries to choose from, we prepared a table you can use to compare countries and their residency by investment programs. Here are the minimum investment amount, types of investments, and validity of visas in order to help you make an informed decision.



Minimum Investment (USD)

Minimum Investment (local currency)

Type of Investment



Business Innovation and Investment visas  


AUD 1,250,000


4-5 years (renewable)


Investor Residency Program




2 years (renewable)


Bahamas Residency By Investment (aka Bahamas Golden Visa)


BSD $750,000

Real Estate


Valid for life 


Permanent Residency Investor Visa VIPER (aka Golden Visa)


BRL 150,000


Real Estate 

Visa is permanent as long as the investment is maintained


Bulgarian Immigrant Investor Program


€512,000 BGN 1,002,615


Permanent residency (after 6 months) 


Startup Visa Program


CAD 75,000


Permanent as long as the investment is maintained 

Cayman Islands

Certificate of Direct Investment, Certificates of Permanent Residence


KYD 500,000


Real Estate 

25 years (renewable)


Resident Investor’s Visa


COP 769,439,125

Real Estate


Permanent (renewed every 5 years)

Costa Rica

Investor Visa (Inversionista)


CRC 79,866,075


Real Estate



2 years (renewable)


Golden Visa / Permanent residence scheme



Real Estate

Share Capita

5 years (renewable)


Talent Passport Scheme




4 years (renewable)


German Entrepreneurial Visa, or Self-Employment Visa




3 years (renewable)


Golden Visa Program



Real Estate

Government bonds


5 years (renewable)


Investor Visa Program




2 years (renewable)


Japanese Investor/Business Manager Visa


JPY 2,500,000


5 years (renewable) 


Investor Program




3 years (renewable)


Permanent Residence Programme



Real Estate (Rent)

5 years (investment to be maintained)


Golden Visa Investor Program


MXN 1,805,525

Capital investment

Real Estate 

1 year (renewable)


Investor Residency Program/ Golden Investor Visa




Real Estate

1 – 10 years (renewable in stages)


Foreign Investor Scheme   




3 years (renewable)


Residence Permit for Investment (ARI/Golden Visa



Real Estate

Capital transfer 

1 year (renewable)


Permanent residency by investment 



Real Estate


1 year (temporary, renewable); eligible for permanent after a 5-year interrupted stay


Investor Visa



Real Estate




1 year (if requested from abroad); 2 years (in Spain)


Self-employed residence permit


SEK 200,000


2 years (renewable)


Swiss Residence Program


CHF 200,000

Lump-sum tax


1 year (renewable)


Innovator Founder Visa 




3 years (renewable)

United Arab Emirates (Abu Dhabi and Dubai)

UAE Golden Visa 


AED 500,000

Real Estate


5-10 years (renewable)


EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program



Capital investment

Conditional green card valid for 2 years then renewed

Disclaimer. The amounts above represent illustrative and approximate values based on the exchange rate at the time of writing (October 5, 2023).

This table outlines the minimum investment you need to make in order to qualify for a visa. There are additional options, requirements, rules or restrictions for each country listed in the table, so please refer to the information below. Also, we recommend visiting government websites or contacting immigration/visa grant officials before applying or investing.

More on each country

1. Australia

Australia’s Business Innovation and Investment Visa program has several sub-categories based on the amount of investment: 

  • Business Innovation Stream – $790,960 (AUD 1,250,000) net assets 

  • Investor Stream – $1,581,925 (AUD 2,500,000) 

  • Significant Investor stream – at least $3,163,850 (AUD 5,000,000)

  • Premium Investor stream – $9,491,550 (AUD 15,000,000) in Australian investments and/or philanthropic contributions 

  • Entrepreneur stream – no minimum amount with a third-party funding agreement and nominated by a State or Territory government agency

2. Austria

To obtain a visa through investment in Austria,  you need to:

  • invest in your own business or a majority-owned business in Austria that either: 

    • involves a sustained transfer of investment capital of $104,995 (€100,000+)

    • creates new jobs or secures existing jobs 

    • involves the introduction of new technologies 

    • is business of considerable significance throughout the region

  • establish a start-up to launch innovative products or services (with proof that capital amounts to $31,500 (€30,000) minimum and an equity share is at least 50%)

3. Bahamas

If you invest in real estate or business in the Bahamas, you can obtain a permanent residence permit that is valid for life. The minimum investment amount is typically $500,000, however, buying a property for at least $750,000 or owning a property valued at $1,500,000 or more means you will be considered more quickly. 

4. Brazil

Investing $29,025 (BRL 150,000) in an innovative Brazilian business to boost the local economy or create the equivalent of 10 or more local jobs. Alternatively, a direct investment of at least $96,750 (BRL 500,000) in a new or existing business. 

Buying $135,450 (BRL 700,000) worth of real estate in the north and northeastern regions of Brazil (or $193,450/BRL 1,000,000 in other regions) will get you a permanent visa in Brazil as long as the investment is maintained. 

5. Bulgaria

Amendments voted on in 2022 included the cancellation of several residency by investment acts in Bulgaria, including the bond investment route and fast-track option. Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and Alternative Investment Funds (AIFs) are the current viable options for obtaining residency. Those who make investments in AIFs or ETFs of amounts of $538,190 (€512,000) or greater can obtain permanent residency in Bulgaria. 

6. Canada

A minimum investment of $54,700 (CAD 75,000) is required if the investment is from a designated Canadian angel investor group. If that’s not the case and it comes from a designated Canadian venture capital fund, then you need at least $145,869 (CAD 200,000). There is no minimum investment requirement as long as the applicant’s business ideas are endorsed by a Canadian business incubator 

7. Cayman Islands

A sandy beach in the Cayman Islands featuring palm trees, blue skies and crystal clear waters.

There are four routes to become a resident of the Cayman Islands: Certificate of Direct Investment, Residency Certificate (Substantial Business Presence), Certificates of Permanent Residence for Persons of Independent Means, and Residence as a Person of Independent Means. 

To get a Certificate of Direct Investment you must make a direct investment of $1,201,800 million (KYD 1 million) in an employment generating business on the Cayman Islands. 

To get a Residency Certificate via Substantial Business Presence, you must either own 10%+ share in an approved business or work within senior management in an approved business.

To get a Certificate of Permanent Residence for Persons of Independent Means you must invest $2,403,595 (KYD 2 million) in developed real estate and have sufficient financial resources to maintain yourself.

To get Residence as a Person of Independent Means you need the following, based on location. 

The Grand Cayman: 

  • Annual income $144,215 (KYD 120,000),

  • Account maintained with at least $480,720 (KYD 400,000) in assets

  • Investment of $1,201,800 (KYD 1,000,000), of which at least $600,900 (KYD 500,000) must be in developed real estate in Grand Cayman. 

Cayman Brac or Little Cayman:

  • Annual income $90,135 (KYD 75,000)

  • Account at least $480,720 (KYD 400,000)

  • Investment of $600,900 (KYD 500,000) of which at least $300,450 (KYD 250,000) must be in developed residential real estate in Cayman Brac or Little Cayman.

8. Colombia

The Resident Investor’s Visa will be yours if you make a direct foreign investment in the form of property purchase or acquisition of stocks in a corporation of the value of 650 minimum Colombian Salaries with foreign money converted to pesos in your name. 

9. Costa Rica

Costa Rica offers Investor Visa (Inversionista) to all individuals who invest at least $150,000 (or potentially $200,000+) in active business, real estate, stocks or securities or $100,000 in forest plantations.  

10. Cyprus

The amount of at least $315,425 (€300,000) will be more than enough for you to obtain the Cyprus Golden Visa if you use it to: 

  • buy a brand new residential or commercial property

  • invest in a Cyprus-based company’s share capital 

  • invest in units of the Cyprus Investment Organization of Collective Investments. 

You must also have an annual income from abroad of $52,570 (€50,000), with higher income restrictions if you are sponsoring a spouse and/or dependents. 

11. France

You can’t obtain a residence permit by investing in securities, bonds or real estate but you can invest in a business and take advantage of the Talent Passport Scheme. This scheme requires you to invest: 

  • at least $315,425 (€300,000) in a new or operating company

  • at least $31,540 (€30,000) for starting a new business, or 

  • at least $21,030 (€20,000) for establishing an innovative start-up. 

The Eiffel Tower in Paris, France next to the River Seine.

12. Germany

Germany’s investor visa scheme is meant for foreign entrepreneurs or self-employed business people who invest at least $378,510 (€360,000) in opening a business or a company in Germany. 

13. Greece

The Golden Visa Program in Greece offers quite a few options if you’re interested in living or investing in the country. When it comes to real estate, you can:

  • invest at least $262,855 (€250,000) or $525,710 (€500,000) in real estate property, depending on the location 

  • conclude an agreement for at least a 10-year lease of hotel accommodation or furnished tourist residences in tourist accommodation complexes (same minimum real estate values as above) 

On the business investment side, you can obtain a golden visa if you:

  • make a capital contribution of at least $420,570 (€400,000) in securities or a bank deposit in Greece

  • make a capital contribution of at least $420,570 (€400,000) in bonds or shares of a venture capital fund, private equity fund, or a mutual fund based in Greece, or

  • invest $841,130 (€800,000) in shares, corporate bonds, or Greek Treasury bonds listed in trading facilities operating in Greece. 

14. Italy

Under the Investor Visa Program in Italy, you can secure residency if you:

  • invest at least $2,102,830 (€2,000,000) in Italian government bonds 

  • invest at least $525,710 (€500,000) in Italian shares

  • invest at least $262,855 (€250,000) if investing in innovative startups or

  • donate at least $1,051,415 (€1,000,000) to projects of public interest in Italy, such as culture, education, ecology, immigration management, research and development, arts, and heritage.

15. Japan

The Japanese Investor/Business Manager Visa is for individuals who wish to invest in (at least $33,570/JPY 5,000,000) or manage a business in the country/occupy a senior management role in Japan (reduced $16,790/JPY 2,500,000). You must also employ 2 full-time Japanese residents, have a co-founder/director that is a Japanese resident, and have a physical office space in Japan.

A Japanese temple in front of Mount Fuji's snowy peak in the background.

16. Luxembourg

Under its Investor Program, Luxembourg grants you a residence permit as long as you: 

  • invest at least $524,840 (€500,000) in an existing business

  • invest at least $524,840 (€500,000) in a new business 

  • invest at least $3,149,025 (€3,000,000) in a management and investment structure (new or existing), or 

  • deposit at least $20,993,500 (€20,000,000) in a financial institution. 

17. Malta

The Permanent Residence Programme in Malta is characterized by several steps. To qualify, you must have assets of $524,840 (€500,000) or more, of which at least $157,450 (€150,000) is financial assets. In terms of real estate, you must:

  • buy a property worth at least $314,900 (€300,000) in the South of Malta/Gozo ($367,385/€350,000 in the rest of Malta), or 

  • rent a property with the minimum amount of rent of $10,495 (€10,000) in the South of Malta/Gozo ($12,595/€12,000 in the rest of Malta) annually.

Additional non-real estate related fees for this program include: 

  • an administrative fee of $41,990 (€40,000)

  • a government contribution of $29,390/€28,000 (if buying a property) or $60,880/€58,000 (if renting a property)

  • a $2,100 (€2,000) donation to a local NGO registered with the Commissioner of Voluntary Organisations

18. Mexico

For those interested in investing and living in Mexico, the Golden Visa Investor Program specifies eligibility criteria as an investment of at least $188,674 in real estate or capital investment in a Mexican company of at least $100,000. 

19. Monaco

The Investor Residency Program/Golden Investor Visa in Monaco enables you to either rent or buy real estate or invest in business to obtain residency. Specifically, the investment should be at least $1,049,675, (€1,000,000), $524,840 (€500,000) of which is reserved for a bank deposit and the other $524,840 (€500,000) to purchase a property. When it comes to business, you can establish a new company and create at least 10 jobs. 

20. Netherlands 

If you invest at least $1,312,095 (€1,250,000) in an innovative Dutch company (start-up, venture capital, etc.) and create at least 10 jobs within 5 years, then you’re eligible to become a resident in the Netherlands in accordance with the Foreign Investor Scheme

21. Portugal

The Residence Permit for Investment (ARI/Golden Visa) for non-Portuguese, non-EU and non-EEA nationals (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway), gives the right to live, work and study in Portugal if you: 

  • transfer capital at least $1,574,510 (€1,500,000)

  • create at least 10 job positions

  • buy real estate property worth at least $524,840 (€500,000)

  • buy 30-year-old real estate property or older, located in urban regeneration areas, that needs refurbishing, for a total value of at least $367,385 (€350,000)

  • transfer capital with a value of at least:  

    • $524,840 (€500,000) for investing in research activities

    • $262,855 (€250,000) for supporting the arts

    • $524,840 (€500,000), or higher, for acquiring units of investment funds or venture capital funds of funds dedicated to the capitalization of companies

    • $524,840 (€500,000), or higher, for constituting a commercial society with a head office in Portugal 

22. Serbia

With no minimum investment requirement, Serbia grants temporary and permanent residency to investors. Either as a natural or legal person, by purchasing real estate, investing or establishing a company in Serbia you not only acquire residence (a higher level of investment can even lead to citizenship) but also enjoy a wide range of tax (and other) benefits. 

Nightscape of Belgrade, Serbia featuring a lighted bridge, riverfront and high buildings.

23. Spain

Investor Visa in Spain is given to foreigners who:

  • purchase unmortgaged real estate for a minimum of $524,840 (€500,000)

  • invest at least €2,099,350 (€2,000,000) in Spanish public debt securities

  • invest $1,049,675 (€1,000,000) in stocks or shares in Spanish companies, investment or venture capital funds incorporated in Spain, or 

  • begin and manage a business project in Spain that creates jobs and has a significant socio-economic impact or innovative contribution 

24. Sweden

Sweden doesn’t have a specific program through which it attracts foreign investment or gives temporary/permanent visas. However, there’s an investor visa for non-EU nationals who are self-employed and wish to open a business. You must be a 50% owner of the business in Sweden and provide proof of at least $18,000 (SEK 200,000) to support yourself, plus more to sponsor a spouse and/or dependents. The business must be beneficial to the economy.  

25. Switzerland

The quickest method to acquire a Swiss residence permit is to pay $217,510 (CHF 200,000) as a lump sum tax to the Swiss canton where you live (the amount could be as high as $652,520/CHF 600,000 depending on the canton). The Swiss Residence Program also has an option for company formation where you invest at least $1,087,540 (CHF 1 million) annually in a pre-approved business or establish a new Swiss company. 

26. UK

The UK’s Innovator Founder Visa requires that you set-up and start an innovative business that offers something different than anything in the market and is endorsed by an approved body. You need to prove you have at least $1,540 (£1,270) to support yourself as well as pay an application fee. 

27. United Arab Emirates (Abu Dhabi and Dubai)

The UAE Golden Visa has many sub-classes that provide a path to residency for real estate investors, investors in public investments, entrepreneurs, specialized talents, doctors and scientists, inventors, creative people in the fields of culture/art, executive directors, athletes, specialists in engineering and science, outstanding students, pioneers of humanitarian work, and frontline heroes. 

You can obtain a Golden Visa in the UAE as a real estate investor if you: 

  • buy a property worth at least $544,515 (AED 2,000,000) in any of the freehold zones

  • buy a property with a loan (from specific local banks only)

  • buy one or more off-plan properties worth at least $544,515 (AED 2,000,000) (from approved local real estate companies only)

On the other hand, if you’re investing in business, you’ll meet the eligibility criteria if you:

  • deposit at least $544,515 (AED 2,000,000) to a UAE-accredited investment fund, prove that your capital is not less than $544,515 (AED 2,000,000), and prove that you pay the government no less than $68,065 (AED 250,000) annually 

  • own an economic project of technical or future nature that has a value of more than $136,130 (AED 500,000)

  • establish a company with a capital of more than $544,515 (AED 2,000,000) 

  • partner with an existing or new company with a share value of more than $544,515 (AED 2,000,000) 

  • become the owner or the partner in a start-up company, registered in the UAE as an SME (small and medium enterprise), that generates at least $272,260 (AED 1,000,000) revenue annually

  • obtain approval for a start-up idea from an official business incubator, the Ministry of Economy or other competent local authorities

  • have sold your own entrepreneurial project for the total amount of at least $1,905,800 (AED 7,000,000)

Dubai skyline at night dominated by a number of high-rise buildings.

See what else Dubai offers and learn how you can get a Dubai visa.

28. USA
The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program is aimed at reducing high unemployment rates which is why you’d only need to invest $1,050,000 in a new commercial enterprise and create 10 full-time jobs (either directly or indirectly depending on the location). If the investment is in a Targeted Employment Area (TEA), that is a rural area or one with high unemployment, then the investment must be at least $800,000 (including infrastructure projects).

Disclaimer. The amounts above represent illustrative and approximate values based on the exchange rate at the time of writing (October 5, 2023).

Next steps

Having learned more about the residency by investment programs in these 28 countries, you probably feel more prepared and confident about investing. If one of the countries that sparked your interest is Serbia, the USA or the UAE, we can help you.

We specialize in real estate and mortgages in the UAE, so take a look at our services, check out our growing portfolio of Dubai properties, or get help from one of our experts here

In the US, we provide mortgage services to residents and foreign nationals alike whether they are buying a home or investing. Check out our US-based services here or get in touch with our US experts.

We also offer real estate and mortgage services in Serbia. If you want to invest in luxury property, check out our property page, find the perfect financing option through our mortgage portal, or contact one of our experts. 

As we have contacts all around the world, we can connect you with our international mortgage experts, wherever you are interested in investing. 

Photo credits:

  1. Photo by Nataliya Vaitkevich | Pexels 

  2. Photo by Azzedine Rouichi | Unsplash 

  3. Photo by stevanaksentijevic | Pixabay 

  4. Photo by Nextvoyage | Pexels 

  5. Photo by Chris Karidis | Unsplash 

  6. Photo by David Edelstein | Unsplash