If you are planning to relocate abroad, it is often very difficult to maintain focus because of the myriads of things that you have to think about.
However, one particular aspect that requires your full attention is the finances. Money is needed to move, expatriate, and in every other step. Therefore, what is the right time to start thinking about financial status or familiarise yourself with the subject of Expats and money?
Before moving, you have a lot to plan for – opening and closing accounts, sorting your savings, reviewing personal investments, inform tax authorities, and embracing international financial options.
Remember the saying that goes; pre-movers have to get finances right before relocation. What you should know is that it is never too soon or late to start getting finances right.
This is a complete guide to assist you to sort everything about your money.
Expats preparing for new life abroad
Before moving, it is important to focus on the cost of relocation. In addition to counting the cash in the bank account, you will also need to sort out an international bank account.
Unlike the local account that you can open anytime because you are a residence, international accounts can be set before leaving.
Even if you want to keep the local bank account open, getting an international account will make it easier to make transactions abroad as you start a new life.
An international offshore account offers cheaper currency conversion charges, provides you access to your cash when abroad, and helps to keep cash from the host country for tax implications.
Other things to think about include your benefits, pension scheme, income from other assets, and how you will get money when abroad. Will you be faced by double taxation on your cash? What about currency fluctuations.
Money matters for newly arrived expats
Immediately you arrive at the country of choice; the first thing to do should be opening a bank account. Many people do this for common requirements such as utility bills and local mobile communication.
You have to decide whether to open an account. If you opt to, know that banks have a varying interpretation of international policies and your due diligence is critical.
Other banks may require a reference form from your old bank, a copy of personal visa, and proof of address. Therefore, enquire what you need to carry and the cost.
Managing international financial matters for established expats
The point at which you opt to internationalize your finances is really up to you. However, make sure to think about the financial position with a global perspective after settling down in the life overseas.
After settling, you need to get a clear picture of how long you will stay abroad, possible need to migrate again, disposable income, and benefits from the new work.
Focusing on retirement plans is important. If you will relocate back to your home country, a decision to continue contributing your retirement scheme might be a great idea. Others weigh joining a recognized overseas pension scheme to save on taxes and get extra flexibility.
By sorting your financial affairs on the long term, you can enjoy huge benefits from your stay and work abroad. You can also keep down the amount you pay on taxes, enjoy higher interest rates, and grow wealth.
Remember that if you feel inadequate, it is always good to seek expert advice on financial matters when moving abroad.