How to relocate overseas successfully
Alan and Sue had long dreamed of moving to an overseas sunny destination, within walking distance of the beach. The long, cold winter in the UK was the final straw and they decided to turn their dream into a reality.
They managed to sell their home in Aylesbury – Sue takes up the story: “We knew the housing market was far from good at the time,” explained Sue, “but we were told by our agent that if our property was reasonably priced it should sell easily, and sure enough – it did. We were thrilled!”
Aware that a number of Brits had moved back from an overseas move, they decided to initially rent a home – as John remarked: “It is one thing to occasionally spend a holiday overseas, quite another to actually live there permanently. We wanted to suss various places out and chat to local people before finally committing ourselves to an area.”
One of their chief concerns was moving their money overseas. Recent vacillations in the sterling/euro exchange rates filled the press and alarmed them – where to go for expert advice and knowledgeable feedback on a subject that they knew very little about?
Alan turned to the Internet for help: “I looked everywhere for the best deal I could get and spent hours surfing the Internet. It became clear from what I read that specialist currency companies gave better exchange rates than high street banks did: eventually I narrowed my options down to Smart Currency Exchange and actually spoke to a real person when I contacted them, instead of pressing endless numbers on my telephone! I looked into the company, asked around, searched for any complaints – did I mention that I was a pessimist? Nothing found, no complaints and all good reports – and they were also authorised by the Financial Services Authority [the “FSA”], the regulator of all UK financial services, so that reassured me enormously.
“I phoned them and they talked me through the whole process, even advising on the wisdom of ‘forward buying’ – locking the currency in at that day’s rate for a time in the future. This meant that for a small deposit I could stick with the same exchange rate that I was initially offered: that way I would know exactly what I would be getting and could do my sums well in advance. It also meant that my pension would remain unchanged throughout the year…and that was a real plus for me.
“I transferred the bulk of my money over to my overseas bank account before we moved. I must say that when I did this I was greatly surprised with the difference in the costs: my high street bank had quoted much higher costs as well as a far less beneficial exchange rate – all round, I found using a currency exchange specialist like Smart to be a far better option. So far our overseas move has been an enormous success, and it was made that much easier by not having to worry about the money aspect of it all – a great relief!”
How does Smart help overseas property buyers – rather than a bank or competitor?
Even although there are fewer banks after the recent recession (and therefore theoretically less competition) it seems that banks still use what some would say is an almost deliberate device of making the small print so complicated that few actually read it. That means that few ever compare costs – indeed many are unaware that Continue Reading…
Currency – Get Smart
Just looking through the channel 4 Place in the Sun article I saw this statement… Would you buy a home in the UK if you knew the price you were paying for it could rise – or fall – at any time, even after your offer had been accepted? The obvious answer is “No”. Continue Reading…