Buy a House, Get a Green Card? Unfortunately, No.

Buy a House, Get a Green Card? Unfortunately, No.
November 7, 2011

With an excess of supply stalling a recovery in the US housing market, Senators Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) and Mike Lee (R-UT) announced that they will offer a bipartisan proposal to boost demand for homes by luring foreign investors to purchase residences and live in the US.

 

If passed, the legislation would provide a three-year residential visa for foreign nationals who invest at least $500,000 in residential real estate in the US with at least $250,000 spent on a primary residence where the visa holder will reside for at least 180 days out of the year while paying taxes to the US.  The concept is aimed at boosting travel, spending and investment in the US and the visa it would provide is a nonimmigrant (priority visitor) visa, not a green card (immigrant visa).  In effect, the visa is like a guaranteed B-1/B-2 visa and the visa holder will not even have US work authorization.

 

To receive US permanent residency (green card) through investment, the EB-5 program remains the only option.  See: EB-5: Invest in the US for Permanent Residency