Expat tips for Brits in Spain looking for a trustworthy IFA

Published:  24 Jun at 6 PM
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Tagged: Spain, UK, Canada, England
As almost every Brit looking to retire outside the home country knows, Spain is an all-time favourite.

The Andalusian region of the Costa del Sol is the preferred option for those looking to enjoy sun-baked days, great food, a friendly welcome and a far less expensive cost of living than in the UK. Overall, Spain is now home to over 195,000 refugees from the UK who’re over the age of 50 and are living their retirement dream. It’s not just Andalusia which is a popular choice for Brit expats, as those looking to experience Spanish life, customs and culture are scattered all over the country.

One thing’s for sure, wherever expats now call home, reliable financial advice can ensure all is well as regards the managing of budgets, no matter how much or how little is coming in on a regular basis. Most expats have sold their British homes and are looking to invest the lump sum where it will earn enough every month to allow for basics and a good few extras. The plan depends on one very important necessity – that of working with a reliable, trustworthy IFA with his clients’ interests at heart. Provided new arrivals avoid the attentions of IFAs with their own bank accounts’ interests at heart, things should go well, but finding the right, qualified and experienced financial advisor can be tricky in major expat hubs.

Checking a potential advisor’s legality and expertise in Spain is similar to the same task back in the UK, with the country’s Comision Nacional del Mercado de Valores – or National Securities Market Commission- the equivalent of the UK’s financial watchdog. The CNMV holds a list of authorised and fully qualified IFAs, thus allowing consumers to check their advisor’s legal right to give investment advice. If an advisor isn’t on this list, they’re not authorised, no matter what excuse they may give to a potential ‘mark’. The CNMV’s listings also show fees and commissions charged to clients for advice, and publishes regular information about scams as well as financial companies whose representatives are working without authorisation.

For newly-arrived British expats thinking of using a British IFA resident in their area, it’s at present legal for any EEA based advisor to ‘passport’ their home country authorisation to another EU state, although this may not be the case after the end of December this year due to Brexit. British IFAs working in Spain are also required to register on the UK’s Financial Conduct Agency’s website, and can be checked if necessary.
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