We all know that we need to invest our money to make it grow but the options for expats in the UAE have been a little limited, until now. Following changes in legislation, I am now delighted to offer fully flexible investment options, with negligible penalties, and a very wide range of fund options.
How long do I need to invest for?
Investments are open-ended, with access if required, but these days I recommend a minimum timeframe of five years.
We live in a world where markets fluctuate far more than they did in the past and you need to give your money time to grow.
Can I really invest without any exit penalties?
Yes, you really can. On exit, the only charges are dealing fees to exit each of the funds you are invested in (either $2 or $5 per fund) and $17.50 to process any payment out.
The amount you receive on encashment will be based on the value of the funds held at any given time.
Is this for lump sums or monthly payments?
Both or either are fine
What are the minimum payments to get started?
I have set minimum amounts of $600/£500 per month, or an initial lump sums of $20,000/£15,000. You can add further lump sums, or increase monthly payments at any time.
In addition, if you set up monthly payments, you will not be penalised for ceasing or missing any contributions.
What can I invest in?
I have access to a wide range of investment funds, thousands in fact, from multiple fund managers. These include mutual funds, ETFs, investment trusts and more, in all sectors.
Even better news is that I can access the professional/institutional class of funds which have much lower fees than those available directly to the public.
Who chooses the investments?
This investment option is professionally managed and so I structure portfolios based on multiple factors including your preferred timeframe, your views on investment risk, the currency, amounts, market conditions and more.
All portfolios are recommended for you personally and I don’t have a one-size-fits all approach. Instead, you are treated as an individual and benefit from personalised advice.
Can I choose ethical or ecological investments?
Socially responsible investments, also known as ESG (environmental, social and corporate governance) are much in the press these days and we can certainly include these types of funds in any portfolio.
I have been advising on this area for 20+ years and you can find out more in this article:
FinancialUAE – why investing can be more than just money
Can I lose money?
No investment is without risk but there is no need to take any more risk than suits you. As with all investments, the value can fall as well as rise and you may not get back the amount you invest. This is a standard warning that you will see everywhere.
In all cases, portfolios are set up in line with your level of risk tolerance. We establish that at outset. You will always be in highly regulated funds, in secure jurisdictions, and while funds will fall and rise as markets do, you will never lose it all.
If you want a fairly cautious portfolio, we can set that up. There is never a need to take high risk, unless you want to. Your money will be in good funds that will produce returns.
Investment is based in the Isle of Man, a highly regulated financial jurisdiction, with tax benefits for expats.
Is it expensive?
It really is not. This is far cheaper than regular premium savings plans and offshore bonds.
There is still a place for sophisticated, personalised offshore bonds as they have tax benefits for some investors although they have a higher entry point, but flexible investing is best for most people for multiple reasons.
Can I manage my investment or set this up myself?
This type of investment ‘platform’ is available via professional advisers and comes with proper investment management.
I use a range of specialist tools to select and review funds, with far more information than is generally available to the public. Plus years of experience.
Numerous surveys have shown that expert advice increases returns over time and real investment management is not about chasing the latest trend but about looking after your money and planning your financial future. It takes away worries and concerns.
You will be able to view your investment at all times and the service includes written reviews and ongoing advice.
Do I need to be living in the UAE to invest?
The majority of my clients are in the UAE but I can advise most GCC residents.
How do I get started?
We need to have a chat. Investing needs to be looked at in context of other financial issues and my business is about advising people on what is right for them. This means we need to look at your overall financial situation, discuss your goals and plans, your views on risk and more, before a formal recommendation is made. All advice in in writing.
Real personal financial planning is about advice. No charge for an initial chat so get in touch.
All meetings are currently on Zoom and this is working well, not least for everyone’s time management. All paperwork can be dealt with online too.
Find out more about what a professional adviser does here: FinancialUAE – what has a financial adviser ever done for you
To arrange a discussion on any aspect of your personal financial planning, please email me at email@example.com
I write articles such as this one as part of the holistic personal financial planning service that I provide to expats, and the general consumer, financial and legal information that I provide in The National newspaper, and on the Facebook group British Expats Dubai.
Please take a look at the other useful articles on this website.
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