INVESTMENT REQUIRED TO QUALIFY FOR THE E-2 VISA?
How Much Money is Actually Needed for the E-2?
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There is no shortage of conflicting information regarding what a realistic investment amount should be to qualify for the E2 visa.
Some sources suggest investors should have $200,000 minimum while others go as low as $50,000. Which is correct? Well the simple answer is they both are correct, but are viewing it from a different perspective.
Technically there is no set minimum amount required by the US Government for obtaining the E2 visa, and every application is handled on a case by case basis. That said immigration officials will need to ensure the business is not considered "marginal" and has reasonable expectations of employing US workers and operating profitably.
And while we have seen approvals for investments as low as $50,000, this is an exception rather than the norm. And in our world of E-2 and franchising, once you include the added expenses relating to the franchise itself, $50,000 becomes almost an impossible number.
Your total budget should also take into consideration your legal fees, business licensing, personal living expenses and business working capital. If your franchise or business is not profitable for 6 months will you be able to survive? Once you consider all these expenses including business and personal rent or mortgage over 6 months we see that a $50,000 doesn't go very far. And if you are purchasing an existing business or franchise that major expense will also be added to the list.
Keep in mind immigration officials are also looking for a reasonable allocation of funds. So if your total budget is $100,000 and you list on your E2 application you are buying a franchise or business for $95,000, your application will likely not be looked upon favorably as you simply don't have the money to keep the business running. It would make more sense in this scenario to buy a business for $60,000 retaining $40,000 for working capital. And this also makes sense from a business standpoint not just for purposes of E2.
Keep in mind you will need to show a logical distribution of funds that cover all your expenses over a given period of time. So if you are starting a business from scratch a minimum of $50,000 is possible, or at least it has been in the past but $100,000 is more realistic. If you are buying a business or franchise $100,000 will likely be your minimum for a service type business, $150,000 for a brick and mortar retail business.
Some of our clients come to us pointing out they have seen food franchises for sale on the business portals for $50,000 or lower and ask if that could be a good investment. Well usually no, and we explore why in our next video entitled "Should I buy a Resale or New Franchise for the E2 Visa".
At franchise.city we work with E2 investors helping to match them with successful American franchises. we work with hundreds of well known brands that can provide an advantage when applying for the E2 visa. To learn more about our service click here: E-2 Visa Franchises