Retire to the Caribbean

Old Sep 4th 2016, 7:53 am
  #16  
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Default Re: Retire to the Caribbean

My information is correct, a relative in govt is somewhat involved in the programme... The statement says you can invest in 'approved' real estate, this means you can invest in building or existing hotels condos appts etc for rent, your own accomodation is not considered part of the investment.

The amount is also sometimes quoted at half a million us, but this is a moveable feast, depends on what you are actually doing, but its a guide sum, but they would expect you see the investment in action before granting citizenship. In the first instance, contact keith mitchell, the PM.

Below is a list of the approved property investment sites http://www.cbi.gov.gd/grenada-real-estate/

Last edited by uk_grenada; Sep 4th 2016 at 7:57 am.
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Old Sep 4th 2016, 8:02 am
  #17  
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Default Re: Retire to the Caribbean

You can always just give them 250k as a donation. NB there is risk involved in some of those property investments, and some are i believe personal projects that would not allow or welcome external investment - most of the hotels are personally financed.
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Old Sep 6th 2016, 7:23 am
  #18  
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Default Re: Retire to the Caribbean

Originally Posted by peter67 View Post
The total assets are £850k so looking to invest £600k in property, so with this would I be able to gain a visa to stay in the country without renewing it.
My two cents worth on this:

The citizenship by investment programmes (CBI) are designed to attract high net worth individuals to the region who will hopefully change the economic landscape of the region by injecting much needed funds into said economies. The attraction to the individual is a passport that will allow access to countries which would otherwise not be so easily accessed - we are talking about Chinese Russian etc. etc. nationals. So the Caribbean is competing with countries such as Malta and Portugal which are running similar programmes in Europe. There will also likely be tax advantages in most cases.

I personally don't see the need for individuals, who can quite easily gain access to Caribbean residence in an event, to spend a big pile of money on CBI programmes.

For example, one can reside in St Lucia by simply owning real estate BUT one has to have one's passport stamped every six months to allow this to happen until one gains permanent residence.

Four to five years hence is a long time and I can see certain islands catching on to the idea that it will behoove them big time moving more into the gated community for seniors scheme of things with easier long-term residence as a given in the next couple of years as the cost of senior care spirals out of control in the UK for example.

There are other things to consider such as tax. Some islands really function as tax havens for non-island income such as dividends, capital gains and pension income while Barbados taxes on world income.

If you are tax ordinarily resident in St Lucia you would have to pay tax on UK real estate income for example but I'm not sure residents comply with tax laws to the letter, IYKWIM. St Lucians shelter St Lucia real estate in 'offshore' companies so there must be ways around this.

So far as banking is concerned, in my experience, the Canadian banks offer the best linkages with the UK and the best online banking systems - these are Royal Bank of Canada and Scotiabank. When I first had connections with St Lucia I opened an account with First Caribbean because Barclays had an interest but it is now owned by CIBC so there are no UK connections left.

It would be expensive to live out of an ATM machine in terms of drawing on that UK NHS pension and there are costs in converting sterling into the local Caribbean currency which would typically be East Caribbean dollars or Barbados, both of which are pegged to the USD at this point and likely to remain so.

If I were doing it again with sterling cash I would probably use Scotia for a sterling and dollar account and use an exchange company to move between those currencies for larger amounts and then draw the EC$ or whatever out of the dollar account where conversion charges are usually pretty low.

BTW, if push came to shove, the best thought-out CBI programme is apparently for Antigua & Barbuda BUT it is not at the cheaper end of things.

In my opinion, any scheme which involves some sort of 'discretion' on the part of 'government' is opening up a can of worms in terms of potential for corruption.

For me, if I were looking to return to living in the Caribbean full-time post the age of 65 I would need to work out how I could properly deal with health insurance and the state health facilities where I chose to settle now that UK state pensioners no longer have access to the NHS for arising issues when in the UK.

Last edited by Pistolpete2; Sep 6th 2016 at 7:32 am.
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Old Sep 6th 2016, 7:30 am
  #19  
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Default Re: Retire to the Caribbean

Originally Posted by Pistolpete2 View Post
My two cents worth on this:

The citizenship by investment programmes (CBI) are designed to attract high net worth individuals to the region who will hopefully change the economic landscape of the region by injecting much needed funds into said economies. The attraction to the individual is a passport that will allow access to countries which would otherwise not be so easily accessed - we are talking about Chinese Russian etc. etc. nationals. So the Caribbean is competing with countries such as Malta and Portugal which are running similar programmes in Europe. There will also likely be tax advantages in most cases.

I personally don't see the need for individuals, who can quite easily gain access to Caribbean residence in an event, to spend a big pile of money on CBI programmes.

For example, one can reside in St Lucia by simply owning real estate BUT one has to have one's passport stamped every six months to allow this to happen until one gains permanent residence.

Four to five years hence is a long time and I can see certain islands catching on to the idea that it will behoove them big time moving more into the gated community for seniors scheme of things with easier long-term residence as a given in the next couple of years as the cost of senior care spirals out of control in the UK for example.

There are other things to consider such as tax. Some islands really function as tax havens for non-island income such as dividends, capital gains and pension income while Barbados taxes on world income.

If you are tax ordinarily resident in St Lucia you would have to pay tax on UK real estate income for example but I'm not sure residents comply with tax laws to the letter, IYKWIM. St Lucians shelter St Lucia real estate in 'offshore' companies so there must be ways around this.

So far as banking is concerned, in my experience, the Canadian banks offer the best linkages with the UK and the best online banking systems - these are Royal Bank of Canada and Scotiabank. When I first had connections with St Lucia I opened an account with First Caribbean because Barclays had an interest but it is now owned by CIBC so there are no UK connections left.

It would be expensive to live out of an ATM machine in terms of drawing on that UK NHS pension and there are costs in converting sterling into the local Caribbean currency which would typically be East Caribbean dollars or Barbados, both of which are pegged to the USD at this point and likely to remain so.

If I were doing it again with sterling cash I would probably use Scotia for a sterling and dollar account and use an exchange company to move between those currencies for larger amounts and then draw the EC$ or whatever out of the dollar account where conversion charges are usually pretty low.

BTW, if push came to shove, the best thought-out CBI programme is apparently for Antigua & Barbuda BUT it is not at the cheaper end of things.

In my opinion, any scheme which involves some sort of 'discretion' on the part of 'government' is opening up a can of worms in terms of potential for corruption.
Thanks - the idea of buying a property and then having to have my passport stamped every 6 months concerns me , if they don't stamp it i have to leave and with my money tied up in property there i wouldn't be able to live anywhere until it was sold.

This is the usual information , just what i wanted to find out - Thanks
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Old Sep 6th 2016, 7:48 am
  #20  
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Default Re: Retire to the Caribbean

Originally Posted by peter67 View Post
Thanks - the idea of buying a property and then having to have my passport stamped every 6 months concerns me , if they don't stamp it i have to leave and with my money tied up in property there i wouldn't be able to live anywhere until it was sold.

This is the usual information , just what i wanted to find out - Thanks
I thought that might bother you. I did it for the best part of eight years BUT I am married to a citizen which could help things somewhat. HOWEVER, I believe that in St Lucia they have tried to streamline the process to make it easier for this type of resident. They are actually not a hostile lot for those individuals who are known to be legit and work with the system.

I'm sure that the smaller islands such as Dominica, Grenada and St Vincent are much the same in that they are trying to attract stayers.

It is very very unlikely that one would get on the wrong side of the Ministry of Home Affairs as a retired person. The Department of Immigration (in the Ministry of Home Affairs) was headed by police officers administratively and this added to the intimidation somewhat, I have to say, but this is now apparently being changed so that civilians run the show.

Best to have a chat with somebody senior (supervisor) in the Ministry for how this would all work for a buyer who wanted more stability.
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Old Sep 6th 2016, 8:22 am
  #21  
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Default Re: Retire to the Caribbean

Pistolpete - one thing re moving money, as there are zero loading credit cards available eg halifax clarity, and scotiabank in gda doesnt charge itself for credit card withdrawls over 1000 ec, you can xfer money with a credit card at that days true exchange rate with no extra costs which is unbeatable. Check it out at Money Saving Expert: Credit Cards, Shopping, Bank Charges, Cheap Flights and more.

I have tried when doing all sorts of transfers big and small, for big, the best is actually cash from the companies who try hard [look at the same website] who beat the so called big fx brokers easily [could it be cause the best ones are all small shops run by indians?]

I once took 300k us dollars in cash to the island, a bit harrowing but it worked and its. Entirely legal if declared.
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