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The reality of the potential Brexit is that nobody can know what it will mean in practice until it happens (if it happens). In some ways, the result of the referendum may have very little europe-63986_640result on financial planning. Regardless of whether or not the result of the vote is to leave or to stay, mortgages will still need to be paid, retirement savings organised and healthcare managed. There are, however, some, perhaps unexpected, ways in which a Brexit could impact your finances, particularly if you travel in Europe. These issues may make little to no difference in terms of the overall economic debate since many of the issues raised will apply equally to people from the EU travelling to or otherwise working with the UK, but they may impact on the finances of particular individuals.
1 – Payment for visas
At the moment the EU is technically a superstate without borders. If there is a Brexit then countries may require UK citizens to have visas to pass through their borders. Of course, these visas may be issued for free or for a nominal charge, however UK citizens would still need to be aware of the requirements for them and the need to check for them might impact on transport arrangements, e.g. the requirement to arrive at international train stations in time for checks to be undertaken.
2 – Roaming charges for mobiles/tablets
In a similar vein to borderless travel, the EU has regulated charges for travellers who roamed between networks within its borders. This regulation applies to calls, texts and data and essentially aims to minimise the impact of moving across national borders. If the UK were to leave the EU then travellers could find themselves in the same situation as when travelling outside the EU at the moment.
3 – Increased cost for goods from the EU/delivering goods to the EU
The EU is a free-trade area, which means that individuals and businesses can send goods (and services) across intra-regional borders without any customs duties being paid. If the UK leaves this free-trade zone then the buying and selling of goods across national borders may become subject to customs charges. In addition to the fees themselves, this may cause the shipment of physical goods to take longer and become more burdensome to the sender and/or recipient, as they may need to manage customs declarations. There may also be the complication of dealing with different sets of legal systems, rather than having one set of pan-EU rules, which, again, may add to costs.
4 – Increased cost for travel insurance
At this point, travellers within the EU can access local healthcare services on the same basis as local residents. All that is required for this is an EHIC card (European Health Insurance Card). This reduces the potential liability for travel insurance companies. Again, if the UK withdraws from the EU, it may cease to be possible for travellers to make use of this system which could have an impact on the cost of travel insurance.
Financial institutions which issue payment cards such as Visa and Mastercard, set their own fees and charges, which reflect the costs they pay themselves. At the moment, even though the UK is outside of the Eurozone, it is part of the EU itself and therefore banking and other financial services work on the same free-market basis as other goods and services. In the event of a Brexit, this may mean increased costs for UK financial institutions when they do business in the EU, including when their payment card holders use their cards in EU countries and this may result in higher charges for using cards overseas.

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