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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here we get teachers pension, in Dubai only a few schools are linked to the uk scheme? I asked someone at teachers pension if we can make voluntary contributions but we can't. My school doesn't offer a pension service so any advice on what i should do? Perhaps look into a private pension?
 

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Here we get teachers pension, in Dubai only a few schools are linked to the uk scheme? I asked someone at teachers pension if we can make voluntary contributions but we can't. My school doesn't offer a pension service so any advice on what i should do? Perhaps look into a private pension?
Hi Michael
My advice after 12 years in the middle east would be 'at least do something'.

It is very easy, and I have seen lots of expats fall for this, to spend as you earn and because it takes discipline to do anything voluntarily a high % of people don't and sincerely regret it...

I have even seen people live a very nice life here, earn good salaries, pay no tax and go home with less than they arrived with and in some circumstances actually in debt...

as for how, be careful of high charge 'pension schemes' through 'ifa's' here. The industry is not well regulated and the plans can be costly if you don't keep up monthly premiums or need to stop for some reason. The newly arrived expat seems to be a favorite hunting ground for these guys.

My personal choice was UK property and I have managed to buy a small house every one/two years and rent it out, they have got cheaper and I am confident that when I finally retire in 10/15 years, they will be mortgage free and a little pension fund for me. Thats just my example and it is personal choice...

my message is really just to say, stick with your intentions now and do something as the time passes quickly and its easy to get caught up with tomorrow/tomorrow here
Good Luck and enjoy
Jackie
 

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Michael,

There is nothing like a pension scheme here, as there is no tax relief available. So assuming you have one in your home country, you will not be able to replicate it here as income is paid gross, rather than with the deduction of tax.

As a consequence there is little choice available, other than to contribute to a "savings plan" of some sort.

As mentioned earlier, some "advisors" will suggest, as you are looking to save for retirement, that you have a plan that would last for the next 20/25 years, thus giving you the opportunity to save for the future.

What they will not tell you, is that the commission figures for policies roughly doubles for every 5 years the plan is put in place for. So a plan with a 10 year term will pay twice as much as a plan for 5 years................a plan for 20 years will pay 4 times the commission. So you can see why so many people are stitched up with longer term plans.

The reality is that the "contract" element of the savings plan is not the term of the plan. So if you had a savings plan on a 5 year contract, you could continue to add to that plan after the 5 year term was completed. You can still achieve your objective, but with less commitment and most importantly, less commission paid to an unscrupulous "advisor".

I know that the previous response mentioned investing in property, but be aware of the high associated costs of such investments, agency fees re-carpeting etc etc. You will also stand to pay Capital Gains Tax on any increase in value above a certain level if the property proves to be a wise investment and any rental income will be subjected to income tax.

I'd be inclined to ensure that you take care to invest off-shore and away from the clutches of the revenue system from your home country. Places like the Isle of Man, and Jersey and Guernsey are the most popular as they offer an element of investor protection.

So to conclude, you need to be very wary of who you're dealing with over here. There is no regulation of the financial services industry, perhaps unlike you are used to. Make sure you ask who ever you meet what their qualifications are, how long they have been in Dubai, and how long they have been in the industry. Don't be afraid of asking them for proof. It's essential that you don;t make the same mistake so many have made.

If you want a recommendation as to who to contact, I'd suggest you contact Elphaba from this forum. I know her personally and you can trust her implicity......she'll give you the right advice for you, and most importantly, not for herself, which is why financial advisors have such a bad name over here!!!!!!

Very long winded, I know, but I hope it helps!!!
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks both, the comments are very useful. It was my understanding that if living outside of the UK landlords don't have to pay tax on the capital of their mortgage repayments
 

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Michael,

There is nothing like a pension scheme here, as there is no tax relief available. So assuming you have one in your home country, you will not be able to replicate it here as income is paid gross, rather than with the deduction of tax.

As a consequence there is little choice available, other than to contribute to a "savings plan" of some sort.

As mentioned earlier, some "advisors" will suggest, as you are looking to save for retirement, that you have a plan that would last for the next 20/25 years, thus giving you the opportunity to save for the future.

What they will not tell you, is that the commission figures for policies roughly doubles for every 5 years the plan is put in place for. So a plan with a 10 year term will pay twice as much as a plan for 5 years................a plan for 20 years will pay 4 times the commission. So you can see why so many people are stitched up with longer term plans.

The reality is that the "contract" element of the savings plan is not the term of the plan. So if you had a savings plan on a 5 year contract, you could continue to add to that plan after the 5 year term was completed. You can still achieve your objective, but with less commitment and most importantly, less commission paid to an unscrupulous "advisor".

I know that the previous response mentioned investing in property, but be aware of the high associated costs of such investments, agency fees re-carpeting etc etc. You will also stand to pay Capital Gains Tax on any increase in value above a certain level if the property proves to be a wise investment and any rental income will be subjected to income tax.

I'd be inclined to ensure that you take care to invest off-shore and away from the clutches of the revenue system from your home country. Places like the Isle of Man, and Jersey and Guernsey are the most popular as they offer an element of investor protection.

So to conclude, you need to be very wary of who you're dealing with over here. There is no regulation of the financial services industry, perhaps unlike you are used to. Make sure you ask who ever you meet what their qualifications are, how long they have been in Dubai, and how long they have been in the industry. Don't be afraid of asking them for proof. It's essential that you don;t make the same mistake so many have made.

If you want a recommendation as to who to contact, I'd suggest you contact Elphaba from this forum. I know her personally and you can trust her implicity......she'll give you the right advice for you, and most importantly, not for herself, which is why financial advisors have such a bad name over here!!!!!!

Very long winded, I know, but I hope it helps!!!
Just to confirm on the tax aspects referred to on property... income tax is only payable on property income if the net amount ( after all mortgage interest payment, letting agency fees and 10% for wear and tear) is higher than your UK personal tax allowance. CGT is payable as you say on profit,,, however for long term expats, when you have been out of the UK for five full years, you are no longer liable to CGT on sale of property. Obviously prior to the fifth year and if you sell after you return to the UK CGT will become a consideration... just thought I would confirm. Yes there are costs associated with property investment and it is not liquid and is therefore not right for everyone, but it has worked for me. The additional tips given above on Financial advisers here is spot on too!
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks both, I've considered investing in a property instead as the pension route doesn't seem ideal when living in Dubai. It was my understanding that when living outside of the UK, landlords don't have to pay tax on their rental incomes? Perhaps I'm wrong
 

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tax

Yes you are correct to a certain extent. As per above, you declare rental income through self assessment, your accountant will deduct mortgage payments, letting agent fees and 10% wear and tear. The net amount is totalled against your UK allowance, if you are within the allowance there will be no income tax due.
Jackie
 

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Jackie,

Yes you are correct, in respect of the deductable allowances given by HMRC, so you've clearly done your homework!!

However, I'd suggest that anyone looking to invest in property in the UK familiarise themselves with the following webpage:

HM Revenue & Customs: The Non-resident Landlord Scheme

So rather than listing all the criteria myself, just have a look and get a flavour for the requirements.

Also make sure that if you're now working in Dubai and you are non-res in the UK you complete the P85 form from the link below to let HMRC know you've left the UK

HM Revenue & Customs: Residence & domicile issues - forms P85 and P85(S)
 

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PM your email and I'll send you across the email the Teachers Pension people sent me as it says you can 'top up' your pension when you come back! So if you set money aside you can pay it in at a later date!!
 
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