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Clueless where to start

(21 Posts)
GnusSitOnCanoes Fri 30-Dec-16 04:52:18

In a nutshell, I don't understand money and I don't know how to fix the situation. I want to learn how to invest and how best to manage my money, but no idea where to start. I have no debt and I'm a careful saver, so have a nest egg (nothing huge, about 200k), but also no assets and a young family. I live abroad (in a market with no IFAs) which also means a lot of the UK money sites don't seem as relevant for me as an expat. I'm embarrassed by my lack of financial literacy and I'd be really grateful for any suggestions on how best to start fixing it.

Manumission Fri 30-Dec-16 05:44:21

so have a nest egg (nothing huge, about 200k)

You're either hugely tactless or you're an outright GF.

Fartleks Fri 30-Dec-16 05:49:51

I'm a bit like this. I have no debts and some house equity. But also no direction and no idea.

Ditsy4 Fri 30-Dec-16 05:59:10

I was left some and didn't know what to do. There had previously been a Finacial Advisor involved who knew some of the family personally( not me) and offered some free advise. I let him take over and he has retired now but I pay someone else to do it because i don't understand it all. They have increased my nest egg. Couldn't you instruct someone in the UK to do it for you?

GnusSitOnCanoes Fri 30-Dec-16 07:17:42

Manumission - sorry, I mean dirhams. I forgot the currency. That's about maybe 40k in GBP.

GnusSitOnCanoes Fri 30-Dec-16 07:26:15

Ditsy, I thought that. I've struggled to find someone who works with expats though (and I'm also a bit nervous about doing it blind, without any real understanding).

Sunseed Fri 30-Dec-16 07:42:03

The principles of investing will be essentially the same wherever you are - identifying your attitude to risk and selecting appropriate underlying assets accordingly. However, you need advice from someone who is an expert in the local laws and tax regime for the country that you are in because the different array of products are (in the UK) basically just different tax wrappers.

There are plenty of online resources that can help you to understand the principles of investing. There are UK IFA firms who operate internationally but may not necessarily have a representative where you are. Can you say which country you're in? I'm a financial adviser but I don't have the required permissions to advise any clients outside of the UK.

GnusSitOnCanoes Fri 30-Dec-16 11:33:07

Thanks Sunseed - I'm in the UAE (which doesn't, to the best of my knowledge, give licenses to IFAs). If you have any suggestions for a dummy's guide to the principles of investing, I'd be keen to hear them. smile

Sunseed Fri 30-Dec-16 14:12:47

A quick Google search suggests that the UAE Insurance Authority is the regulatory body and there are financial advisers registered with them. It will be a case of you contacting a few to find one that suits.

There was a good thread on here a few weeks ago that had useful resources for learning about investing. I'll try and find it.

Sunseed Fri 30-Dec-16 14:16:29

GnusSitOnCanoes Fri 30-Dec-16 15:04:06

Thanks Sunseed - I'll have a read now. The UAE issue is that all financial advisors have to work within a company. So we have a proliferation of cold-calling 'advisors' without qualifications, who all sell 30-yr plans with excellent returns for them, and very few for you. I'd like someone independent who I can pay for advice, rather than someone who will sell their specific portfolio. Anyway, I'm rambling. smile Will read the link now - thanks.

Sunseed Fri 30-Dec-16 15:21:27

I hear what you're saying!

Lunaballoon Fri 30-Dec-16 15:33:08

Do you have a pension, OP?

GnusSitOnCanoes Sat 31-Dec-16 05:25:40

No. And that's partly why I know I need to start putting a proper financial plan in place.

isthistoonosy Sat 31-Dec-16 05:37:15

Do you plan to return to the UK? If so.would investing in your pension in the UK be a good starting point - voluntary contributions to the national pension, a private UK pension or btl be a good starting point.
I'm also an expat with a similar amount of cash and no IFA where I live either. This is the way I've gone with an additional pension in the country I'm in although that is very small so needs to be seriously built up.
Generally all the offshore, avoid tax, pay X amount for X amount of years type things are a con from what I have a read so best avoided.

InTheDessert Sat 31-Dec-16 06:15:09

Is the money in the UAE or UK?
We are planning on going back to the UK - can't remain in KSA if DH doesn't have a job anyway. We ship as much money as we can to the UK each month - basically just leaving living expenses here. The massive drop in the pound has meant a big "payrise" for us. Were not doing the best we can with it in the UK - currently just stuffed in a savings account, by feel safer in the UK banking system than the local system!!!
So, I guess the first thing to consider is where you want the money to be eventually?

Lunaballoon Sat 31-Dec-16 12:13:32

This is a very good personal finance forum. Lots of IFAs post on there.

SvartePetter Sat 31-Dec-16 12:23:38

If you want to use a wealth manager then there are UK firms with an UAE office. I think Killik for example but there may very well be others.

GnusSitOnCanoes Sat 31-Dec-16 12:31:21

Nosy I've been gone a long time, so I'm not sure paying into a UK pension would be as effective as putting the money to work elsewhere. (But prepared to be corrected on that as have very little idea what I'm talking about!) But definitely something to think about. I agree that the 'pay X for X long' seem to serve the broker and no one else...

Dessert it's in the UAE, but - very similarly
to you - I'm nervous having it here! I'm wondering whether to move it offshore just for ease of access (the sharia law element here always worries me: if anything happened to me, my accounts would freeze and it's a hugely drawn-out process to get the money). I don't know where the next stop is, job-wise, so I do wonder whether it's best to just try and buy a property in the UK so a) we have a foothold in our home country and b) the money is being used rather than just sitting in a bank account.

GnusSitOnCanoes Sat 31-Dec-16 12:33:28

Luna - thank you; adding that to my reading list! I've actually not heard of Killik, Svarte, so will look them up. Thank you.

isthistoonosy Sat 31-Dec-16 21:39:56

I think how long you have been gone is irrelevant what matters is where you intend to live in retirement. If that is the UK the having money on the UK and a foothold on the property market is more important that I you plan to retire in Spain, for example.

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