The exchange rate has in the first six months of the year again become the silent enemy of British overseas property-buyers, as well as residents receiving Sterling based income in the Eurozone.
This is thanks to Â£1 being worth just â‚¬1.156 yesterday, 16th July, compared with â‚¬1.231 on 1st January. It means a typical â‚¬150,000 property in Spain or France has increased in price by around Â£7,800 to a UK buyer – assuming the property's price hasn't changed – purely on account of the weaker pound.
It also means a monthly income of Â£1,000 is worth â‚¬53 euros less in Europe, or â‚¬636 a year – far more than the winter fuel allowance is worth!
Buyers in the US have been hit just as badly too. Yesterday Â£1 was worth $1.508, while at the start of the year, it was $1.626, making a typical $150,000 single family home in Florida around Â£7,200 more expensive to a British person.
On the flip side, the Australian dollar has weakened, from Â£1 to AUS$1.56 to today's AUS$1.66 – great news for anyone emigrating there or receiving a UK income!
This makes using a currency exchange specialist to transfer money abroad – rather than just using a bank by default – even more advisable. Many people might find the strategy of forward buying half of the total amount they need to transfer and leaving the remainder to transfer at a spot rate on the day, a useful strategy to protecting themselves from rate movement.