Advantages of using a currency broker or foreign exchange specialist

Using a foreign exchange currency specialist

The importance of finding the best exchange rate

Whether your property is an investment, holiday or retirement home, or if you plan to live there permanently, it's easy to forget about the boring things, like how to transfer the money to pay for the place. You'll be paying for your property in a foreign currency and if you choose the wrong method to transfer your cash you could end up thousands of pounds worse off. Finding the best exchange rates and methods of transfer can make a very big difference to the amount you eventually pay. And you will certainly want to ensure that the price that you have to pay for your property does not increase due to an adverse exchange rate movement.

Currency brokers versus banks
This is where currency brokers or specialist foreign exchange companies come in. They are able to offer many benefits over and above what high street banks can offer, while making the process of buying property relatively easy. The main advantages are as follows:

The main advantages of using a currency broker

  • Currency brokers/foreign exchange companies offer the most competitive exchange rates available, saving you money.
  • They offer lower transfer fees than many banks.
  • They can transfer your money more quickly than many banks.
  • They do not charge commission.
  • They can protect you from adverse currency movements, allowing you to lock in to favourable exchange rates, thereby fixing exchange rates for settlement in the future.
  • They have friendly, expert staff on hand to guide you through the process, often available outside of the normal opening hours of banks.

Euro exchange rates - how the rates vary

Here is an example of how differing exchange rates could affect you, as we compare three leading high street banks with foreign exchange specialist Moneycorp.

If you had transferred 50,000 into Euros on 13 October 2005 at 12 noon, Moneycorp would have used an exchange rate of 1.4545, crediting you with €72,725. Their transfer fee would have been 15.

HSBC would have used an exchange rate of 1.3985, crediting you with €69,925. HSBC would also have charged you a 21 transfer fee.

Lloyds TSB would have used an exchange rate of 1.4453, crediting you with €72,265, while also charging a 30 transfer fee.

Barclays would have used an exchange rate of 1.4514, crediting you with €72,570, while charging a 20 transfer fee.

So you would have been €2,800 better off by using Moneycorp instead of HSBC, €460 better off using Moneycorp instead of Lloyds TSB, and €155 better off using Moneycorp instead of Barclays.

Options available from currency brokers

More detailed information about the products on offer from currency brokers can be found by following the links below, but to summarise these are:

Forward Contracts - whereby you 'fix' an exchange rate so that you aren't effected adversely by currency fluctuations in the future. More information is available via the link below.

Spot Contracts - whereby you purchase currency 'on the spot', at the exchange rate of the day. More information is available via the link below.

Regular Payment Plans ? for regular money transfers (eg: pension or mortgage payments) which again can be 'fixed' for up to two years.

Read more about all of these options in our article: Currency exchange options which save you money.

Don't throw money down the drain - talk to the specialists

Whatever your situation, it makes sense to talk to a specialist. Currency brokers monitor the currency markets and are always available to give market guidance. This enables clients to make an informed decision on when to exchange their funds and what type of arrangement would be the best bet.

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