With a new Prime Minister on the horizon and still no sign of a finalised Brexit deal, there’s a huge amount of unpredictability for anyone sending money overseas. In times like this, expert advice is invaluable. We spoke to our Senior Trader, Barney Cotton, about how to protect your money from the risk of uncertainty when moving abroad.
Personalised solutions tailored to your needs
Smart is currently ranked #1 on Trustpilot in the UK for money transfer, and one of the elements that is cited again and again in reviews is the quality of the service clients receive from their Personal Trader. Can you explain a little about the role of a trader and how you help your clients?
Your trader is here to hold your hand throughout the process. All of our traders specialise in property purchases in different areas of the world and would be able to guide you as you go through an unfamiliar process. When exchanging currency, there can often be unforeseen risks which can have a negative impact on your plans.
In recent years, the political landscape has increased the market volatility and left our clients vulnerable to unexpected changes. All of our traders are versed in providing appropriate solutions to mitigate risk and provide our clients with the clarity they need to plan ahead for the future. Not every client has the same timescale or requirement, so your trader will be able to provide you with a solution catered to your pending transfers.
We know from our recent survey that, while most people do protect their money when they send it abroad, a significant minority do not. What are the risks that they’re running, and how can they protect against them?
You don’t have to look back very far to see the risks of not protecting your money. The 2016 referendum is the perfect example of how unexpected political change can have a huge impact on people’s budget. Three years on and we’re still faced with political uncertainty and similar risks. Whilst we can’t second guess what’s around the corner politically or economically, we can help people to prepare for the worst. For those clients who have recently signed an agreement to buy a property overseas, the only way of removing the risk is to secure the cost of your new home by fixing your exchange in place before your completion date.’
‘Protecting your money is easy. Once you have committed to buying a property abroad call your trader to discuss fixing your exchange in place for a date in the future. It’s a simple case of agreeing on the amount you wish to secure and a date in the future you’d like to settle the exchange. The only thing we would need is a 10% deposit within a few days of agreeing to fix the price.
Our clients completing this July who signed forward contracts back in April and May are now 5-6% better off.
A great example of how this process works would be our clients completing this July and August. They would have signed commitments to buy back in April and May and those that choose to remove their currency risk are now 5-6% better off.
Planning ahead for Brexit
What do you say to people who are worried about Brexit? Is it possible to safely send your money with all this uncertainty going around?
To play it safe.
Brexit is a worry for the majority of our clients but it’s not stopping them from buying overseas. The uncertainty caused by Brexit will remain but so does the desire to get on with plans and buy a property abroad. If, like many of our clients, you’re concerned by the uncertainty caused by Brexit, then fixing your exchange sooner rather than later would be a good move. If you fix and exchange after agreeing to buy a property abroad, then regardless of the political uncertainty, your costs are protected. You can then get on with the other aspects of buying abroad with the knowledge that your property costs aren’t going to spiral out of control.
If I’m moving abroad and I have a UK pension or regular income, what would be your advice on moving that money on a monthly basis?
A regular payment plan would be the easiest way to approach your transfers. All it requires is a simple one-off set up with your trader and bank. This is followed by automatic transfers each month to your preferred EUR bank account. The plan can be amended or cancelled at any time, but if you know how much you’d like to move each month, it’s a frictionless way to move money on a regular basis. Unlike your bank, there are zero fees or charges and our exchange rate will be superior. Over the course of 12 months, we save you hundreds of pounds.
It’s never too late to protect your money – and it always pays to be prepared. To get started, speak to your Personal Trader today on 020 7898 0541. If you haven’t already opened an account with Smart Currency, simply do so today by filling in our enquiry form. And don’t forget to refer the people you know who are sending their money abroad without protecting it to us. You’ll do them a good turn and earn yourself unlimited Smart rewards, too.