We get a lot of questions from expats on the complexities of tax and investing as a citizen abroad. However neither The Investor nor I have any experience in this area. We’re both firmly based in Blighty.
However I have come across a few sites in my time that boast an active expat community that should be able to point you in the right direction, or at least sketch out the issues to think about.
So this article is a simple round up of resources that may help you deal with investing while posted abroad.
It’s divided into three sections:
- Investing and tax for UK nationals
- Same again for US citizens
- A general section that applies to everyone
My article is just the start. With any luck, we can crowd-source some better links once the Monevator readership has had its say in the comments below.
Indeed, I’ve already had some invaluable advice from a far-flung Monevator reader named Nigel:
Much of the expat advice available online is a thinly veiled sales pitch from service providers who’d like to charge you fees. There’s nothing wrong with paying for advice but make sure you double check the source of anything you read online. Expat forums can be cruising grounds for advisors looking for business.
My thanks to Nigel.
Note, we can’t vouch for the accuracy of any of the info linked to below. Advice inevitably dates, and some authors have a sales-related agenda.
Go careful and don’t take anything at face value.
General resources for the expat investor
- The International Investor is the site par excellance for advice on investing in foreign brokerages and shares.
- The Bogleheads’ forum is the Wikipedia of passive investing wisdom. One Boglehead has kindly collated a cache of links for expat investors.
- There is plenty more expat material to be found on the Bogleheads and it isn’t just limited to the concerns of Brits and Americans on tour.
- If you have a question about expat investing or tax issues then try searching the site using the advanced Google search term site:bogleheads.org followed by your topic e.g. double taxation treaties.
- Monevator on withholding tax – the bane of an expat investor’s life. Our article is written from the perspective of a UK domiciled investor but the principles are the same no matter where you’re based.
Expat UK investors
- Tax issues surrounding dual citizenship / gaining US citizenship.
- Offshore banking – Note, this is HSBC sponsored content on The Guardian.
- Expat support on Motley Fool.
- HMRC expects – Tax obligations for UK citizens on foreign adventures.
- HMRC outreach – For UK retirees leaving or returning to Britain.
- HMRC on QROPS – The taxman’s advice on transferring your pension to a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS).
- The QROPS list – HMRC’s list of Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes.
Expat US investors
- Bogleheads on the long arm of the IRS grasping US citizens abroad.
- Investing in Vanguard abroad.
- Opening foreign bank accounts.
- HMRC on coming to work in the UK.
- US expats in the UK forum – tax board.
- Primers for US expats – This is research from a financial advice firm.
Over to you
Remember that the basic principles of investing hold true everywhere. If you want to know how to design a portfolio or to escape the rat race then you should use the same trusted UK and US sites and books that you’ll discover through Monevator every week.
Are you an investor planting your corn in a foreign field? Please tell us about the sites or books that have helped you in the comments below, and together we’ll turn this page into a cracking resource for expats around the world!
Take it steady,