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- CURRENCY EXCHANGE -

Buying a property abroad is often the realisation of a personal dream and probably represents one of the greatest expenses of your life. As part of the purchase process, you will inevitably need to transfer a sterling sum into another currency in order to pay for your property. This vital element of the purchase process - one that is often overlooked - can make a huge difference to the price, in sterling, that you will have to pay for your dream home.

Exchange rates change constantly and 10% fluctuations in a relatively short space of time are not uncommon. This could effectively increase, by 10% or more, the sterling amount that you will have to pay.

There are various organisations that can convert your sterling into whichever currency you need. Specialist currency dealers will normally offer you a better rate of exchange than your bank and provide a more personalised service. Foreign exchange companies like Moneycorp often offer a proactive service to their clients, using their expertise to monitor exchange rates on the clients' behalf in order to achieve the best possible rate of exchange.

If you ask your bank to send the money you should expect them to charge you for doing so. The local bank may also make a substantial charge for receiving the money. A reputable currency trader may well be able to reduce those overseas charges substantially by sending the money via a cheaper route.

Your currency can be delivered any time within two years at an exchange rate fixed at the time of purchase. This is called 'forward buying' and it will help you secure an exchange rate at an advantageous level even if you do not have all your sterling available to transfer at the time of purchase. Forward buying removes the risk of adverse currency movements that could lead to the sterling value of your overseas property increasing between the time of signing and the contract and the actual payment.

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