Foreign Exchange

Case Studies

New property purchase in Denia, Spain

Richard Bradfield

Why did you decide to buy an overseas property in Spain?

The family and I have been taking holidays for years in the region. We love the beaches near the nature reserve of La Albufera south of Valencia. 

What advice would you give people thinking of buying overseas property?

Like any home purchase, you'll have the option of buying a resale property or one off-plan (which is basically a home that hasn't been built yet). There are advantages to both. Buying an off-plan property is often cheaper than buying an older home. This is because developers keep prices low at the beginning stages of development in order to get cash flow. In addition, these newer homes have to comply with strict regulations and building codes, something that an older property might be lacking.

When transferring your money what options did you consider?

My first stop was my bank. I then compared their rates with those of the other high street banks. I also spoke to my financial adviser and to some colleagues at work who’d already bought property overseas. Two had used HiFX and recommended I give you a call. 

Why did you choose HiFX?

With HiFX the whole process seemed a lot more simple. One of your Private Client Team walked me through all the options and answered every question and concern I had. I particularly liked the way I could fix an exchange rate using a forward contract, thus knowing ahead of time exactly how much my instalment to the developer would be. The rates you quoted were also far more competitive than those given by the banks.

Since using you for my initial currency needs, I’ve begun transferring my Euro mortgage payments using the Regular Payments Service. The lack of bank charges was a huge attraction! 

 

Buying a character town house in Carcassone, France

Sarah Meadows

Sarah used HiFX for the first time when she purchased a character town house in Carcassone, France.

Why did you decide to buy a property in France?

Ever since I first went on a 6 week exchange to Grenoble when I was 16, I’ve been a bit of a Francophile at heart! I also studied French as part of my university degree so the language is not a problem.

How did you find your property?

Over the space of about 12 months I went to every French property show possible. I also spent hours in my study at home trawling the internet for properties and additional information about the regions I was interested in. 

What advice would you give people thinking of buying overseas property?

Choose your location carefully. France has plenty of wonderful areas in which to live so it's a good idea to sit down and write out exactly what you're looking for in a property. Do you want to be close to a golf course, overlooking the beach or out in the country? Or would you prefer to be closer to a city where you'd have easy access to shops, restaurants and nightlife?

Do your research! Using the Internet is a great way to find exactly what you're looking for. You can type in criteria such as location, price, amenities and more, in order to narrow your search. Also, call your realtor and ask for a current flyer or brochure.

Finally make sure you see the property in person. Buying an overseas property is a major decision. It's essential to make a viewing trip to visit and see the actual property you're interested in. Pictures are great for getting an idea, but with today's technology, it's easy to hide imperfections in a home.

When transferring your money what options did you consider?

I must admit I had never heard of currency companies like HiFX. I went to my bank and tried to get a rate from them. I had to go through their main call centre and after 15 minutes of hold music I gave up. In my frustration I turned to the internet and found your website. I compared your rates with those of the other high street banks and realised how much I could save. 

As I was buying a resale property I decided to buy all my currency in one go using a spot deal. Your dealers monitored the markets for me and contacted me when the exchange rate got to 1.43.  

Why did you choose HiFX?

I’m not exactly a financial expert and as a beginner in the overseas property market your staff guided me, explaining the process step by step. When I call, real people answer the phones and their guidance has helped me save almost £3,000 because of the excellent exchange rate you offered.

Since using you for my initial currency needs, I’ve insured my property with your insurance arm. I made a claim recently when a pipe burst and yet again the service was excellent. A far cry from most insurance companies.