This is an all too-familiar situation that we hear time-and-time again. But saving doesn't have to be hard! Senior Financial Planner Jonathan Lumb has put together five quick savings tips for expats to help get you on your way.
You can’t start saving until you know exactly what you are spending your money on so the first thing to do is write down your expenditures or use apps such as Mint, or the GWM Group App to track. Split your expenditures into bills and everything else so you can see which areas you can realistically cut back on.
As an expat, it is often easy to get carried away with living an extravagant lifestyle with your higher earnings. However, it is important to make sure your spending is relative to what you are bringing in. For instance, ask yourself - do you need to live in the most expensive area of town? Do you need to buy a brand-new car, or will one a couple years old with a full-service history do?
No-one wants to spend most of their wages on rent and car loans.
Professional advice can be invaluable in enabling you to achieve your goals
There are two types of debt – good debt such as
mortgages and bad debt such as credit cards. Make it a priority to clear bad
debt as soon as possible to avoid paying high amounts of interest over a long
period of time. The money saved by paying debts can quickly be put towards
savings funds that work for you.
It is common for expats to send home money each month to cover mortgages or other responsibilities in home countries, however, most people don’t realise they are losing a significant amount each month on fees and poor exchange rates. Banks can charge up to 5% in transfer fees which is extremely high. There are a number of online FX options such as GWMFX that are accessible anywhere, anytime, and can offer preferential exchange rates. It is important to shop around to ensure you get the best deal.
Jonathan joined GWM when he moved to the UAE in 2008. As a Dubai resident of 9 years; and with over 21 years in the banking and financial industry, Jonathan is well placed to provide qualified, UK compliant advice to individuals, families and businesses in the MENA region.
When saving,Creating a forced, consistent discipline on a monthly basis will help you achieve greater savings.
Get the facts on offshore savings for expats