If your goal is to immigrate to the US as soon as possible, you might have checked out the EB-5 immigration program. One of the biggest decisions you will make with this program is where to invest your funds. Plenty of places in the US need your help, whether to save a business, create ten jobs, help improve the local economy, or all three. You will simply have to consider the characteristics of each of the more than 50 regional centers in the US that accept the EB-5 immigration visa, and location is likely to be one of the major factors in your decision.
1) Think about the industry you want to be a part of. While the main point of most regional centers is of course to stimulate the local economy and create jobs, many have a more specific purpose, as well. For example, some centers in Los Angeles focus on improving the film and television industry, so if this is something that appeals to you, consider applying there. Centers in Las Vegas specialize in the hospitality industry like most businesses in the area, so if hotels, bars, casinos, and entertainment interest you, use your EB-5 immigration there. It’s similar to looking for a job; you will be happiest if the work interests you, no matter how involved you are in everyday operations.
2) Think about the location. If you prefer to be based on the coast, clearly regional centers in areas like California, Washington, Oregon, Florida, New Jersey, and more will likely catch your attention first. If you love tropical settings, consider Hawaii. If the Midwest appeals to you, Illinois and other central states also feature regional centers. Even if you choose not to use your EB-5 immigration visa at a regional center, you can open your own business anywhere you’d like, in which case you have even more options when it comes to location.
3) Consider whether you will live near the regional center you choose. If you are using your EB-5 immigration visa in an area with low employment, you do not have to live near the center at all. In fact, you could live clear across the country if you do not want to be involved in daily operations. This would work if, for example, you are interested in the film industry in Los Angeles but prefer to live in a rural area that gets snow, like Vermont. You could invest your money at the regional center that interests you most while living somewhere else.
Whether you use your EB-5 immigration visa at a regional center that needs your help, or choose to open your own new business, you have options. Deciding where to apply is one of the first steps to take toward obtaining this visa, and gaining some knowledge about how to select a location is important before making the commitment to a particular area. Clearly, this program offers some flexibility, so you do not have to live somewhere you don’t like just to participate in an industry that interests you. Knowing this can save you the trouble of getting involved in a program you do not care about, or perhaps living somewhere you can’t stand.