Many of the locations which offer these Citizen by Investment (CIB) programs are idyllic such as Mauritius and the Caribbean with strong tourism and rental markets. These are also destinations that South Africans aspire to travel to, she adds. The investment required is often less than what you would pay for a luxury property in SA, and rather than eyeing second homes here, wealthy South Africans are taking the opportunity to invest in a second home in offshore destinations where they can obtain a second residency or citizenship. Benefits of such a passport include visa-free travel access to countries that they cannot get to with a South African passport. Families want to be mobile in a global market and have access to international education for their children. There are also tax benefits and the peace of mind of having a “Plan B” is a big driver for many investors. Apart from the capital retention that property offers, investors benefit from capital growth and can leverage rental income, adds Ms Read Thaele. This, in addition to the currency hedge by owning a USD-based asset. The property can be used for a luxury holiday or rental income while it continues to grow in value. The required holding period is usually around five years, but certain areas such as The Commonwealth of Dominica (Dominica) in the Caribbean only requires three years.
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