British expats Harry Braybrooke and partner Gillian made the right decision to use a currency exchange specialist for sending money between the UK and France, but soon after moving to their French home they found out that not all offer the same level of service.

Article written by The Overseas Guides Company

The Braybrookes used a currency exchange company when they completed on their home in South-west France in 2011, and after moving to France permanently, asked them to begin making regular transfers from the UK to their French bank account. However, after a small problem arose the couple decided to switch to another company, namely Smart Currency Exchange, which specialises in helping overseas property-buyers and expats who make regular payments.

“As our pensions are paid into our English banks it was necessary for me to exchange sums on a regular basis,” explains Harry. “This was fine for a while but then a problem arose which necessitated me talking to them on the phone. During the conversation I was told that they didn’t usually deal with small sums. I made the point that sums between £1,000 and £2,000 per month may not be considered ‘small’ to some people. I made the decision to try another exchange company!”

Harry and Gillian approached Smart Currency Exchange, having read about them in the free France Buying Guide, which they’d used when researching their purchase in France. “In my initial conversation with Smart my first question, of course, was ‘is it a problem to exchange smaller sums?’ I was assured it wasn’t, so have used Smart for over a year now. The efficient, accurate and prompt service I receive, allied to a high degree of courteousness, is something I personally find very reassuring.”

The Braybrookes live in a three-bedroom villa on the edge of Navarrenx in Aquitaine. “We saw this property on the internet and viewed it in July 2010 while on holiday at a local campsite,” says Harry. “We have a friend living down here who is an estate agent and the property was on his books. We surprisingly sold our house in Suffolk to the first viewer and immediately put a bid in on this property. Our first bid was rejected, but a second bid was accepted. We signed the ‘compromis’ in December 2010 and completed in March 2011. Many of the property’s fittings, including central heating and windows are the originals, so there is a considerable amount of updating still to do.”

To see properties for sale in France, visit the French listings on Rightmove Overseas. For more information on how Smart Currency Exchange could save you money when sending money between the UK and France, visit the Currency Zone or download their free report here.

To understand the full step-by-step process to buying a property in France, collect The Overseas Guides Company’s ‘France Property Buying Guide’

The views and comments herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Rightmove Overseas, Rightmove Group Ltd or Rightmove Plc