The chance to live and work abroad can be an enriching experience, bringing excitement and satisfaction in many ways. It also causes challenges and complexity.
Black Swan Capital Europe have made a list of 5 important considerations for people in the European expat community that you might find helpful in your financial planning and also to let you know that you are not alone.
Managing scattered assets
When you have lived and worked in several countries, you may have financial assets spread around the world. These can include pensions that are crucial to handle correctly, but easy to lose track of. It can make managing money complicated and a good reason to seek help from a qualified financial planner with expertise in international regulations.
Children and education
Having children as an expat can bring extra financial pressures. Educating children in international schools can be expensive and going to a local public school may not always be an option. Thought must be given to your child’s primary academic language, what curriculum best suits the child, their cultural needs and their future aspirations. Then there are college or university fees, living expenses and contingencies for difficulties your child might face. Along with this goes planning for being an expat empty nester.
Caring for ageing loved ones
When working abroad we may have to pay to get our loved ones the care they deserve. This requires research and careful financial preparation. Sometimes we have to help ageing family members with their finances from afar, in different time zones.
What’s next? Repatriation or…
How long will you stay in your current country? Most expats really don’t know and have to plan for many different possibilities. Immigration status can change as we have seen post-Brexit, a job might be offered in another country, or perhaps you aim to settle down exactly where you are. If expats want to repatriate, they also need to think about what kind of life they would like in their home country and take into account the variable costs of living, knowing that this is often the most difficult move of all.
Sometimes there are unexpected issues and life changing events. Separation and divorce, redundancy and job loss, illness and death are part of life, but we prefer not to think about them. When you’re living outside of your country of citizenship, these events can be more impactful and complicated. Having a good relationship with your financial planner and having organised integrated support is important in dealing with these unpleasant parts of life that demand principled money management.
Life as an expat can be enriching and challenging. Planning to manage the complexities and making provision for the unexpected can reduce stress and increase your quality of life. Speak with us at Black Swan Capital to see how we can help you.