Invest in Confidence: Why Having an Investment Attorney Is a Smart Move

Even as economic investment opportunities may be drying up elsewhere, such opportunities abound in the United States.

For about the last twenty years, China has been a sought-after destination for foreign capital, as relaxed laws and a growing economy made a very attractive investment environment. But the September 2017 economic figures from China were incredibly weak almost all across the board, leading many to speculate that the country has yet to move past the economic crisis of 2016, which included two stock market crashes and a currency devaluation.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the globe, the Brexit controversy drags on, creating a great deal of uncertainty not only for the UK, but in the remainder of the European Union. There are signs of slower economic growth and higher unemployment rates, and that combination spells trouble for new investors.

Why America?

For the past several months, traditional gateway cities like New York and Los Angeles have been investment hotspots. While opportunities remain in places like these, they may not be as plentiful — or as financially attractive — as they were in early and mid-2017.

Fortunately, the United States is a very big place.

Places like Nashville, Phoenix, and Denver offer a lower cost of doing business and emerging opportunities in the energy and manufacturing sectors. Many other locations, most notably Salt Lake City and Raleigh, are in the midst of significant employment booms, and all those people with disposable incomes need places to spend them.

Investor Visa Benefits

All these opportunities are simply theoretical without assistance from qualified lawyers, because attorneys are integral to the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. Whereas some other countries offer limited-purpose investment visas which are essentially only valid for a few business trips, the EB-5 is a green card visa that has significant benefits for both investors and their families, including:

  • The ability to live in, work in, and travel to any location in the country without any need for renewal or re-application. So, if that opportunity in Seattle does not work out, you can follow up on a lead in Las Vegas, and stop to see the sights in San Francisco on the way.
  • The potential to own your own business, as opposed to the limited potential of investing in someone else’s business.
  • A path to naturalization for both you and qualified members of your family, because they all get green cards as well.

The minimum investment has always been as low as $500,000, and in 2011, the State Department made some changes to make EB-5 visas even easier to acquire.

Qualification

Attorneys can also help expedite the process of qualifying for these visas. EB-5 investors usually have two full years to invest the minimum amount of capital and create, or preserve, at least ten domestic jobs.

Because they create so many jobs in both construction and in the service industry, many EB-5 investors gravitate towards commercial real estate and other such ventures, and these kids of opportunities are tailor-made for the burgeoning, high-employment locations mentioned earlier.

Unlike some other visa programs, there are no national limits or caps to worry about. Everyone capable of contributing to the American economy is more than welcome here.

Don’t Miss These 7 Car Insurance Milestones

Constantly looking for new ways to save can be exhausting. Whether you are trying to save money for a vacation or you’re looking to shave a few dollars off a bill, saving money takes effort. However, every once in a while you get a break when your birthday rolls around. This is especially true with car insurance. There are a number of car insurance milestones that can save you cash.

7 Car Insurance Milestones You Can Benefit From

Car insurance can be expensive, especially if you’ve been in an accident or have had tickets in the past. There are a few milestones that can reduce your auto insurance policy though.

  1. Turning 25 – When you turn 25 you’ll be able to rent a car and you may get a few dollars off your current auto insurance policy. There’s no real reason for this but it’s a milestone that can help you save. If you’ve had a good driving history, your insurance carrier may give you a discount after your 25th.
  2. Getting married – If you’re getting married your spouse’s driving record can help you land a lower rate too. However, if your spouse is a risky driver with accidents and tickets on their record it could have the opposite effect if you’re adding them to your policy.
  3. Having a child – Some families choose to purchase a newer, safer car when they have a child. If you choose to get a car with advanced safety features your insurer may provide you with a lower rate because the vehicle you are traveling in is safer than the one you had before.
  4. Relocating – If you have to relocate for work (or simply have to move), your auto insurance rates could go down as well. Areas with higher traffic, like New York City, are subject to higher car insurance rates. The farther away from the city, the lower your insurance.
  5. Turning 50 – Oftentimes car insurance rates lower again once you hit your 50s, especially if you’ve had a good driving record. This is because individuals in their 50s are more likely to drive safer vehicles and are less likely to take risks while driving.
  6. Sending your kids to college – Many parents keep their kids on their auto insurance policy through college. If your child gets good grades at school your insurer may reward their grades with lower rates.
  7. Retiring – Similar to the rate decreases at 25 and 50, retiring can also help reduce your auto insurance rate. This is usually because retirees have older, safer cars that are simply cheaper to insure. However, you’ll also be getting a senior citizen discount and may get additional discounts, depending on your location and insurance company.

Saving money is tiring but every once in a while you’ll hit one of these car insurance milestones that will help you save without lifting a finger. If you have specific questions about these milestones and discounts offered, give your insurance company a call. You may even be able to save some money today!

 

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How You Can Invest in Luxury Properties

house-1946371_640You might think that you need to be a millionaire or an international property developer to invest in luxury real estate.  Well, you would be wrong.

Before we go any further, this article is not pitching a get rich quick scheme.  Instead, it will outline some simple strategies that the average person on the street can invest in real estate.  Keep in mind, these strategies might not be for everyone and if you have a hard time controlling your finances then the you might want to read this article on how to simplify your home budget.

Now that we have that out of the way, let me explain why you might want to consider investing in luxury real estate.  For starters, it is a hard asset and one that is usually well-positioned to withstand an economic reversal.

Second, the legion of the world’s richest is continually growing.  I know it might not feel that way when you drop your kids off at school but you never know which one of those parents is a successful business person or investor.

That being said, there are five important things that you need to know about investing in something like luxury condos.  Ok, maybe a sixth, as a small piece of advice is that just not all luxury properties cost $1 million.  In fact, many properties are considered ‘luxury’ due to their location or some other characteristic which helps it to stand out from the crowd.

  • Find & Flip

Now, this approach does require some work – both research potential properties and to get them ready for resale.  But you want to know a secret, even ‘rich’ people run into problems with money every now and then.  When that happens, many will choose what is known as a strategic default and this opens the opportunity to buy what would normally be an expensive property on the cheap.

However, there is a lot of skill to this approach and if you are considering getting into the flipping game, then you will want to take some time to study the market and to build up your contacts.  This could include connections in the property tax office, local banks, and even with the contractors who will help you to get a market ready for resale.

In addition, you should be willing to do much of the dirty work yourself as this will reduce how much money you will need to invest in a property – leading to more profit for you.

  • Consider Condos

For starters, condos are smaller than homes, so if you find the right property it will probably cost to prep for resale than a home.  Also, these condos tend to be in well-managed buildings in prime locations and this will and tens of thousands to the sale price.  Another item to consider is that these buildings generally tend to have many services for their tenants including gyms, restaurants, even a dry cleaner all on site.

A final thought about condos, all the work will be inside.  This means you don’t need to worry about expensive roofing projects or landscape gardening.  Not only does this reduce the time needed to prep a property but it also means that it is easier for you to scope out the work that will need to be done.

  • The Grass IS Always Greener

Let me explain.  We live in a global world and there is no law that you can only invest in luxury properties in your hometown or even your own country.  In fact, investment in an exotic location might have a lower upfront cost than anything you can find closer to home.

There are several things that you will need to consider.  First, is whether the country you have targeted allows foreign property investment.  You see some emerging markets restrict the right of foreigners to own property.  As such, you don’t want to make the mistake of investing in a country where you will need a dodgy, and complicated, legal structure own a property.

The second thing that you will need to consider is how you can find, and repair, the property you have in mind.  Fortunately, the internet can help with targeting but construction being what it is, you will need to find a way to be on site during the renovation phase.  If not, the costs will sky rocket and your project will never be completed.

  • Find a Partner

Maybe you have a friend who is already investing in real estate, or maybe it is known developer with a track record of success.  Either way, there are plenty of ways to invest in real estate without owning the entire property, and I am not talking about timeshares either.

  • Buy & Upgrade

‘Luxury’ has less to do with the property’s cost and more to do with the amenities and the location.  As such, you can look for opportunities to buy and upgrade a property.  Who knows you might be able to sell it or you could let it out on Airbnb or similar sites.