Aug 01, 2022
By Charles Taylor Harris

The Great American Exodus: Why Americans Are Leaving the US

But since June 24th, when the Supreme Court struck down Rode v. Wade, the landmark ruling that established the constitutional right to abortion, Get Golden Visa has recorded a threefold increase in visits from the United States.

While the recent surge may be attributed to the Supreme Court decision, we have long been observing common factors driving Americans to leave the country... To have a better understanding of their mindset and decision-making process, we’ve reached out to our extensive database of American investors and prepared a whitepaper based on their responses: The Great American Exodus.

Here are our findings and the top reasons why Americans are looking for an additional residency outside the US.

Top Reasons Why Americans Are Seeking Residency Outside the US

1. Social and Political Unrest

Most of the respondents we talked to expressed their growing unease with the social and political upheaval in the US. They are losing hope in the current political system, and they don't anticipate any significant change very soon. They believe that the US needs social reform and unification, but they don't believe it will happen soon with the current divided and politicized state the nation is in.

2. Cost of Living

The high cost of living is another reason why so many Americans are looking for residences outside of the US. The majority of respondents who already left the US responded that they value having access to fresh food at lower costs than in the US. Another reason why Americans search for a second residency in another country is the ability to access healthcare at a lesser cost.

3. Investment Purposes

Making a profitable investment is the main goal for a specific group of investors. They seek to diversify their portfolio and expand outside of the US market, mostly by investing in real estate or investment funds. They are able to do this diversification thanks to Golden Visa programs, which also grant them residence permits. Thanks to the various investment options it provides, Portugal Golden Visa is their first choice.

4. Discouraged by the American Mindset

A significant group of survey participants has stated that the American mindset of more work, more debt, and consequently greater stress is a reason why they want to leave the US. They don't want their kids to grow up in such a stressful environment and they are looking for a more peaceful environment where they can grow up. Many of these parents choose Portugal, which offers an ideal setting to raise a family in.

5. Vacation House

Some respondents state that their hunt for a second residency has been motivated by their desire to own a holiday house in a Mediterranean country. An added benefit of their real estate investment is the residency permit in Europe. They want to stay in Europe as long as they like without being concerned about a travel visa. Programs like Golden Visa offer them this opportunity. Portugal and Greece are the top destinations for these investors.


Below are the percentages for the reasons why people apply for a second residency. As you can see, social unrest is the most common worry among the survey participants.

  • 42% social and political unrest in the US
  • 29% rising living costs in the US
  • 10% getting a second passport from an EU country
  • 8% making a profitable investment
  • 6% making a life change
  • 5% retirement plan

Here is the rest of our engagement statistics:

  • For 90% of the respondents, getting a residency in Europe is the first choice
  • 47% of the respondents stated that the quality of life is the main reason that helped them identify their destination
  • Only 10% of the respondents would consider renouncing their citizenship of birth if they moved to another country full time
  • For 52% of the respondents, it took over one year to make a second residency acquisition decision
  • For only 5% of the respondents, widespread use of the English language is a reason that helps them choose their destination

The Bottom Line

Different factors and motivations drive Americans to leave the US. Despite the diversity of the profile, we believe that the trend will continue and more Americans will look for ways to obtain a second residency, whether or not they have imminent migration plans.

Are you also looking to get residency in Portugal through Golden Visa? Feel free to contact us at for your inquiries. Our team of real estate professionals and investment advisors will be happy to answer your questions.

To read our whitepaper in full, download it here.

Charles Taylor Harris
Executive Director at Get Golden Visa