If the EB-5 path to residency was a metaphorical door, the investment portion would be the key. This investment funds EB-5 projects and creates the required number of jobs, unlocking the EB-5 door to residency. By familiarizing yourself with current trends in EB-5 projects, you can start creating a key capable of opening the right door. Here are some of the 2023 EB-5 investment trends to be aware of as you begin crafting your investment key:
Current inflation rates, interest rates, and banking chaos have made it more difficult for developers to acquire capital for their projects. This gives investors increased power and popularity in the capital markets. It means EB-5 investors are likely to be more sought after for capital as other sources may not be able to produce funding. The current economic climate is creating a variety of opportunities for private investors to provide funding for projects and other investment opportunities. When supply is limited, basic economics tells you the price should inversely increase. These conditions can be seen as favorable for potential EB-5 investors as the returns on their investments should be higher than previous years due to the need for capital with a limited supply. If you are considering investing in an EB-5 project, the time is now. Houston EB5 is equipped to help you find the right project for your investment during this period of economic flux.
Currently, the highest share of visas allocated for EB-5 projects is set aside for rural projects. This means rural projects can offer more opportunities to secure a visa through the EB-5 program. In addition to access to a larger pool of available visas, investing in rural projects gives EB-5 applicants access to priority processing. The wait time for receiving a visa can be lowered to one year by choosing a rural project. Combined with the current need for investor capital, investing in a rural project can be a comparatively fast-paced path toward obtaining residency. The two largest pools of EB-5 applicants, those from India and China, stand to benefit the most from investing in rural projects. This is because of the strong demand from these markets which will likely cause retrogression in the future. Rural projects provide the safest path at avoiding extensive waits caused by retrogression. For further commentary regarding retrogression, please take a moment to read our recent blog.
The EB-5 investment program is shaping out to be quicker and more efficient. The Reform and Integrity Act of 2022, or RIA, has laid the groundwork for further refinement of EB-5 petition processing. It is estimated that EB-5 processing may be reduced to as little as 120-240 days. It is already possible for regional centers to reduce processing times from years down to less than a year in some cases. This trend of increased processing speed is only expected to continue in the wake of the RIA. Our Houston EB5 Regional Center has fully adopted RIA improvements and protections. By doing this, we can help streamline and potentially speed up your investment processing.
There are a significant number of H-1B visa holders living in the United States. Increasing numbers of those H-1B recipients are opting to adjust their status from H-1B to EB-5. Part of the reason for this trend is that an EB-5 makes it easier for individuals and family members to live and work in the U.S. without the need of an employment sponsor. H-1B recipients are starting the EB-5 application process to free themselves from dependency on sponsorship employers. If an H-1B recipient pursues an EB-5 application, they can become permanent residents. This eliminates the worry that their immigration status will be at risk if their H-1B employer lays them off. Adjustments of Status to a pending EB-5 petition can give individuals more flexibility and security in who they choose to work for by obtaining the EAD in as little as 75 days. The Adjustment can be submitted at the same time as the EB-5 petition, leading to a quick and easy solution for someone who’s looking to resolve the 60-day grace period after being fired by the H-1B employer or to an applicant who’d like to begin working in the U.S. without the need of an employment sponsor as soon as possible.
The global trend in EB-5 demand is currently showing an uptick in applications. People in many nations, including Vietnam, South Korea, India, and China, are applying at a high rate. While the RIA has done a great deal to improve processing, a limited number of EB-5 visas are available. Applicants from the previously mentioned high-volume countries are recommended to file for EB-5 sooner rather than later. If there are more applications than available spaces, retrogression may occur, extending wait times further even after visa approval. Fortunately, the RIA has implemented new and stronger investor protections to mitigate the risk of unwanted delays.
The future of the EB-5 program is bright, with RIA refinements and economic conditions ripe for investment in rural projects. Our Houston EB5 team is prepared to help guide you through the process and explain the availability of our potential projects. The economic and immigration trends of 2023 are making EB-5 investment visas one of the most attractive paths to residency. Now is the time to take advantage of these opportunities and start your journey toward receiving a green card. Contact us today to schedule a consultation or learn more about the EB-5 visa program.
Our goal is not to profit off EB-5 fundraising as a regional center, but rather aim to profit as a developer of real estate. However, in order for us to do that, we must fully pay dividends owed to EB-5 investors before we can receive a dime of profits. Further, we can only exit the project after the EB-5 investments have safely returned to our investors. This is why we’ve had a 100% success rate in repayment of EB-5 funds, an accomplishment that only the gold-standard of regional centers can say.