Looking to make Argentina your second home? The country’s Rentista Visa program offers retirees and folks with passive income (e.g. from property rentals) the ability to obtain residency there.
Plus, you can apply for Argentinian citizenship after just two years of residency.
Let’s get into the details below…
A closer look at Argentina’s Rentista Visa program in 2023…
Argentina has had its ups and downs.
The near-constant economic turmoil and corruption have taken their toll on the economy, but that’s not the whole story. It’s safe to say that there’s a lot to love about this South American country.
The Argentine peso has been constantly losing value against major currencies, making the country an extremely cheap option for anyone earning in dollars or euros.
You get a lot of bang for your buck here, plus a reasonably high quality of life.
Some extremely well-traveled people we know call Argentina the cheapest civilized country in the world. And this statement is hard to disagree with.
Buenos Aires, the country’s capital, is often compared to Paris for its architecture and vibrant lifestyle. Sure, it’s a run down version of Paris, and there’s even more crime than in France to watch out for, but that’s true of many big cities.
And Argentina is not only about Buenos Aires. It has much more to offer: From the stunning Patagonian Pampas and volcanoes of the south, to its beach towns in the east, to the lush wine region in the north-west – Argentina has it all.
And the country’s so-called Rentista Residency – meaning “rentier” in English – is an excellent way of obtaining a residency there for retired folks and those with rental income…
The Argentinian Rentista Visa at at glance
|KEY PROGRAM CHARACTERISTICS
|Around $2,000 monthly (calculated as five times the official minimum wage.) Every applicant must have this income to qualify.
Alternatively, you can potentially qualify by remitting around $24,000 (12 x $2,000) to Argentina.
|Qualifying Income Types
|Pension from public or private sources; passive income such as rental income from outside of Argentina, dividend payments, annuity, interest payments from CDs, etc.
Employment income does not qualify.
|Residency Type and Renewal Conditions
|Temporary residency, renewable every year.
To keep it active, you must spend at least six months per year in Argentina.
Understanding the recent changes to the Rentista Visa program
Until recently, the unwritten income requirement to qualify for the residency was about $2,000. (The official requirement, set in inflated Argentinian pesos, lost its significance a long time ago.)
But in July of 2023, the official income requirement changed. Now, you must demonstrate that you enjoy at least five times the minimum Argentinean salary to qualify.
Considering the runaway inflation in the country, this minimum salary changes monthly. As of this writing in August 2023, it equals 112,500 pesos (around $400 according to the official exchange rate).
And in September, it will increase to 118,000 pesos per month.
This new income requirement seems to be in line with the old unwritten income rule – five times the legal minimum wage is also around $2,000.
What has also changed, however, is how larger families are treated:
Each applicant must now show that minimum income, making income requirements for larger families downright onerous.
Another new program novelty is somewhat more positive:
Our contact on the ground mentioned applying on the basis of a savings lump sum may now be possible – provided that it is remitted to Argentina.
The problem here is that at least currently, no Argentinean bank will accept such a “large” transfer for a new client – and at least $24,000 per person is required.
Moreover, in our opinion, the dysfunctional Argentinian banking system is one of the worst places in the world to hold your money…
Will I be able to obtain Argentinian Permanent Residency?
After holding this residency for three years, you become eligible for permanent residency.
However, obtaining it makes little sense, since you can apply for Argentinean naturalization (i.e. citizenship) sooner – after just two years of residency.
That’s one of the fastest timelines in the world. Just keep in mind that the naturalization process is not immediate. As of 2023, it will take around two more years.
And Argentine citizenship is better than permanent residency.
Plus, new residents can take advantage of a tax law provision that lets you avoid paying taxes on your worldwide income for up to five years – but only whilst you’re a temporary resident…
But what if I don’t have passive income?
Again, you could try to apply for the Rentista Visa by remitting the requisite $24,000 to Argentina – but this will be challenging, and likely neither viable nor advisable if you’re applying as a large family.
Whilst Argentina does, on paper, have an investor visa, the country’s bureaucratic ineptitude has made this program practically impossible to navigate ever since it was introduced.
The country does have a digital nomad visa program, too. And we will be examining this here in the near future, so stay tuned…
Argentina is not short on problems… But if you’re earning hard currency abroad, you could enjoy an exceptional quality of life and unrivaled value for money.
So if you’re looking for an affordable, exciting place to call home – with the very real prospect of getting second citizenship and a decent passport after a few years – Argentina might just be your perfect match.
Yours in freedom,
Team Sovereign Man