Beware paying your bank’s ‘price’ for an overseas property

It’s a sad fact, but many overseas buyers needlessly add £000s to the cost of their holiday home. Here’s how to avoid being one of them.

British people who use their UK bank to send money abroad for a property purchase pay an unnecessary excess of around three per cent for their new home, on account of nothing more than poor exchange rates.

Transferring sterling into a foreign bank account is a common requirement of people paying for a house abroad. However, many buyers are not aware that the cheapest and quickest way to make a secure foreign currency transfer is through a currency specialist and not a bank.

The situation is made worse by Sterling’s recent weakening against the euro and dollar – savvy buyers should be looking for ways to minimise the impact of currency fluctations on their overseas purchase, starting with finding the best exchange rate available to them.

“It’s frustrating that by default, people still either head to their local bank or make an on-line bank transfer when they need to send money abroad,” said Charles Purdy, CEO of Smart Currency Exchange, an FCA-authorised currency specialist. “Many people don’t think to ask what exchange rate they are receiving. We typically offer rates that are three per cent better than any high street bank, we only charge fees on low value transactions – and even then they’re far less than the banks’, plus we transfer funds much more quickly. To use our service, you simply open an account with us and the same day your currency could be safely on its way to your beneficiary account abroad.”

The figures speak for themselves. Sending €120,000 to a euro account, for example in Spain or France, would typically cost around £3,000 less using Smart Currency Exchange instead of a bank.

Experience from helping thousands of overseas property-buyers means that Smart Currency Exchange’s service doesn’t just stop at competitive exchange rates. It also offers the facility to fix a rate for a future transaction, using a forward contract. This means that once a client has found a property to buy, they know what exchange rate they will get when they come to exchange and later complete. Fixing the rate means they can be certain the amount the property costs in Sterling won’t change between making an offer and completion.

Article written by Smart Currency Exchange

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Start a Blog at

%d bloggers like this: