Marc Morley-Freer, Head of Private Client Business at Smart Currency Exchange,

“Retiring to the Eurozone is sometimes just a pipe dream for many people in the UK. For those who have made the leap of faith and who have until now been reaping the benefits, the start of 2013 will have proven quite tough.

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“Since January, the exchange rate fell dramatically meaning that those of you who receive regular payments from the UK will be getting far less for your money. Although there is little that you can do other than sit back and hope things improve, you can make sure you are getting the best rates possible on transfers without incurring unnecessary charges from your bank, by utilising the services of a currency exchange broker.

“Perhaps the most valuable service that currency brokers can offer those receiving regular payments from the UK is the ‘Forward Contract’. Once signed up, the brokers will help you to lock in a favourable exchange rate that you are happy to trade at. You can fix the exchange rate for up to 12 months in advance. This allows you to budget and means that your pension and similar payments won’t be subject to adverse market fluctuations.


For those of you who are yet to make the move but are still planning, the recent turmoil in the Eurozone could provide some interesting opportunities

“At the moment, if you are a cash buyer, Cyprus could represent a great opportunity to buy property at a reduced price. And then there are still Spain, Portugal and of course, the Greek Islands that could be considered.

“So, if you haven’t already moved overseas but are planning to do so, now could be the year for you to take the plunge. It’s certainly a buyers’ market out there and if you take the option of fixing your currency you will know exactly how much you have to spend and live on. 2013 is already looking like an interesting year in the overseas property industry.”

For more information, go online at www.smartcurrencyexchange.com