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As restrictions begin to lift all around the world, people are looking closely for investment opportunities. Placing their quality of life at the forefront of their decision making, some of these investments will inevitably mean relocation to a new home – and potentially even a new country. In this three-part series we’ll explore destinations around the world with benefits like residency and citizenship by investment programs, tax incentives, and more, as well as hear from local experts throughout the Sotheby’s International Realty® brand network along the way.
Often considered to be the bridge between Russia and Western Europe, and the gateway to Central Asia, Latvia joined the European Union in 2004 and the Eurozone in 2014, the same year Riga, the country’s capital, was also named a European Capital of Culture. Latvian is the official language, though Russian and English are commonly spoken, the country is seeing many expats from Russia, Vietnam and Ukraine. A €250,000 minimum requirement real estate investment in Latvia will set you on the path to residence that includes free access to all 26 Schengen countries and a 23% flat tax on personal income.
“Purchasing activity in Latvia’s premium residential segment – apartments, private houses, land, are growing,” says Vestards Rozenberg, Owner and CEO, Baltic Sotheby’s International Realty. “As social behavior continues to change and people search for less urban destinations and ones with lower social density to relocate, places like Latvia – boasting the 4th lowest rate of population density in Europe, four distinct seasons, and access to picturesque Nordic nature – become much more sought after.”
Mauritius, the island nation in the Indian Ocean, is home to turquoise waters, rare flora, a rich multicultural population and perhaps, most distinctively, the world’s most famous extinct bird, the dodo. Often referred to as the “miracle” nation, consistent growth and prosperity are the norm here. Between the $375,000 minimum required real estate investment for residency, 0% tax on capital gains, and its unrivaled tropical lifestyle, it’s no surprise that Mauritius is a top destination for those seeking a Golden Visa.
“The Mauritian government has announced various measures to encourage Foreign Direct Investment (FDI),” says Timo Geldenhuys, Owner and CEO of Mauritius Sotheby’s International Realty. “The most notable measure is that with a real estate purchase of $375,000 an investor [and their family] can obtain permanent residency. That along with daily flights to India, China, Europe, UAE, and Australia this culturally diverse country is a great place to live all year round.”
In recent years, some have begun calling the small nation of Montenegro the next Monte Carlo or Cote d’Azur. With the lion’s share of Montenegro’s most sought-after real estate locales along the Adriatic Coast, seaside towns like Budva and Sveti Stefan, and Tivat on the Bay of Kotor have seen recent upticks in development. With a €250,000 minimum real estate investment required for residency and an under three-month process to obtain citizenship, Montenegro offers those looking to relocate much in the way of incentives.
“Obtaining a passport in Montenegro is a three-month process that grants you free access to 130 countries,” says Niko Lakovic, Partner and CEO of Montenegro Sotheby’s International Realty. “On top of that, Montenegro is well on its way to joining the European Union (EU) – something we expect to happen by 2025. It’s a beautiful country, a short flight from major EU destinations, and with personal and corporate taxes at 9%, we’re attractive to foreign buyers.”