Retiring to the US Virgin Islands – What you should know
If you like the sounds of white sandy beaches, luxury sailing and high-end shopping, the US Virgin Islands are an attractive place to retire or semi-retire.
In this article, we will tell you more about the US Virgin Islands, and how to retire to them as an expatriate.
About the US Virgin Islands
The US Virgin Islands is an unincorporated territory of the USA. This means that the area is “…controlled by the United States Government but that is not “incorporated” for the purposes of United States constitutional law.” Other similar territories include Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa and Northern Marina Islands.
The population of the USVI is just under 110,000 (as of 2018) and the language spoken is English, with some also speaking Spanish and French.
The climate is tropical, with temperatures of 32c in the summer, and 29c in the winter. Perfect if you are looking for warm weather all year round!
Living in the US Virgin Islands
Real Estate: If you are thinking about purchasing property on USVI, then the laws and processes are similar to that in the US. Additionally, a tax is charged annually on real estate, at the cost of 0.0038% of the assessed value.
Cost of living: Compared to mainland USA, Europe and Canada, the cost of living is higher in the US Virgin Islands. In particular, electricity is expensive.
Taxes: Whilst there are no sales taxes on the islands, the rest of the tax rules are similar to that of the US mainland.
Semi-retiring to the US Virgin Islands as a US citizen
If you are an American citizen, then you do not need a working permit for the USVI. The islands also have daily nonstop flights from most major cities in the US, making it the perfect place to semi-retire and/or to remain working.
Retiring or Semi-retiring to the US Virgin Islands as a non-US citizen
Non-US citizens who wish to retire to the US Virgin Islands must follow the same rules and immigration policies at the US mainland. Unfortunately, it is not as simple as applying for a visa and being granted one, but there are a couple of ways to do so.
One way is to obtain an employment visa through sponsorship from a US employer. Another is through a family member who is already a US citizen.
Alternatively, you can invest in the EB-5 investor program. The minimum amount you must invest is $500,000. This opportunity is not only for retirees, anyone has the opportunity to obtain an immigrant visa in this way. The investment scheme helps areas where there are higher than average unemployment rates and helps create new jobs and provides financial supports to struggling businesses.
Healthcare in the US Virgin Islands
There is no free healthcare on the US Virgin Islands. It is advised that everyone holds their own private medical health cover to ensure they can afford to pay for the treatment they may need in the future.
Private Medical Insurance for the US Virgin Islands
We at Healthcare International have been covering expatriates in the USVI for over 25 years. In the case of you needing medical care, we can help you get the treatment you need. This includes the option of travelling back to your home country for treatment should you prefer this.
To find out more about our expatriate medical insurance for the US Virgin Islands, please visit us here: www.healthcareinternational.com