Growing Your Finances Without Long-Term Stability Abroad

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If you are living abroad on a temporary visa, it is harder to make a long-term financial decision, because you lack stability. Think about this:

How are you going to justify investing your money, buying a home or a car, or start a business when your visa expires in a year or two?

Growing Your Finances Without Long-Term Stability Abroad

Making Investments

People invest for their retirement for the long term. This can be in the stock market, where funds are invested and left to compound over 10, 20, 30 years.

But how will you invest for the long term, when your visa expires in a few years' time? Also:

  • Will local banks allow you to invest with them as a temporary visa holder?
  • What happens to your investment if you leave?
  • How will your investment be taxed if you leave?

These are potential issues that you have to think about, although they're not unsolvable. There are solutions to cross-border investment strategies you can consult from lawyers, financial advisors, and investment firms.

However, these solutions are typically worth it only if you are investing a sizeable sum of money, otherwise the fees you will have to pay won't be worth it.

Starting a Business and a Side-Hustle

The same issue described above also applies to starting a business.

As someone on a temporary visa, if you want to start a business or a part-time side-hustle, you might not be allowed to. Some Employer-Restricted work visas don't allow that.

But even if you are on a visa that allows you to, we're back again to the question: What happens if you have to leave the country in a few years' time?

It is possible make it work, but you'll need to put in extra due diligence on your part.

Buying a Home

Quite a number of countries around the world encourage foreign real estate investment.

But not a few also impose restrictions on non-citizens and non-permanent residents from buying a home.

When buying a home as a temporary visa holder, keep in mind that:

  1. You might not qualify for any government funding programs including any tax benefits or rebates.
  2. You might also be assessed additional purchase, property, or ownership taxes that are not typically levied to citizens or permanent residents.
  3. Rules for foreign homebuyers change all the time, there may be new taxes that you haven't needed to pay but will have to.

A cheaper home abroad may not always mean a cheaper home, for you.

Of course, there are nuances to this, and it depends on the type of property and where it is located. There are in fact golden visas that you can obtain by purchasing property

Over and Out

When managing your finances abroad, you have to always keep in mind your temporary visa status and your potential lack of stability. Both of these are factors that can make or break your investment.

Long story short, proceed with caution and lots of due diligence!

More on the Cons of Moving Abroad

The following 6 chapters take on a slight naysayer approach, to counter the notorious social media narrative that moving to another country is always a "cool" thing to do. Moving abroad can be one of the best decisions you can make for yourself... But if you're not careful, it will derail your life.

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Hey, Ryan here 🇨🇦


Over the past 10 years, I've lived & worked in 5 cities across 3 countries (Previously in 🇸🇬🇮🇩).

More about me here.

27 years old

12 visas & residence permits granted

18 countries & territories visited

12 houses & apartments lived in