FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do you charge for your services?
Options typically include:
AN HOURLY RATE - This will vary and is dependent on the specific piece of work that needs to be undertaken
A SET FEE - The fee will vary depending on the complexity of the task
AN ANNUAL MANAGEMENT FEE - Clients are charged an annual management fee in return for providing an ongoing holistic advisory service. This fee is usually dependent on the assets under management. to find out more visit the
Fee transparency page
Do I really need financial advice?
According to Vanguard a financial adviser can add as much as 3% (in some cases more) to your net portfolio over time. (Source: Francis M. Kinniry Jr., Colleen M. Jaconetti, Michael A. DiJoseph, and Yan Zilbering, 2014. Putting a value on your value: Quantifying Vanguard: Advsiers Alpaha.
It isn’t just all of the work that goes on behind the scenes, such as ensuring you have the right asset allocation, rebalancing exersises and advice on investment vehicles. But rather they suggest the biggest value your adviser can give you is Behavioural coaching.
Your financial adviser should be there to coach you, knows your plan, where you need to get to and can help to keep you on the right path.
Financial matters can be complicated. Tasks such as - preparing for retirement and protecting your estate so you can pass it on to your children are all complex. A financial adviser can help you make sense of all of these tasks. Financial advisers can holistically examine your financial situation and help you craft a financial plan to ensure you make decisions that are in line with your larger financial goals.
Furthermore, financial advisers have the investment expertise that you probbaly don't. A financial adviser can help you to create an asset allocation that fits with your goals and adjust it as you get older or your goals change. At the same time, financial advisers can help you to protect your assets, which becomes especially important as you near retirement.
There are so many financial advisers in Dubai. Why should I use AES?
Just read the credentials!
Highly regulated in various jurisdictons, including the UAE, Europe and the UK
Winners of 26 highly prestigous awards
Next generational investment philosophy
Keeping your investment costs low
Robust ongoing annual progress reviews
To find out more see the
What services do you provide?
Retirement planning for expats
Pension Transfers for expats
SIPPs and QROP's advice
Offshore banking for expats
Life insurance and critical illness cover
Tax and Estate planning
Lending and levergaing
Investment advice and asset mangement
Education fee funding
X ray portfolio reviews
Direct investment access to low cost investment portfolios
Scientific/evidence based investing
Where are you regulated?
It is paramount that you work with a regulated adviser (i.e., one that enforces high standards and it’s rules) As an example, in the UK the regulator is the FCA (the Financial Conduct Authority),in the US it is the SEC, in Singapore the MAS
AES is an integrated financial services group focused upon the international, offshore and cross-border market place. We are regulated across the globe by the nessesarry regulatory bodies in those jurisdictions.
AES Financial Services Ltd (“AESFSL”),operates in the UK, trading as AES International, and is registered in England no. 06063185, its registered office being at 7 Bell Yard, London, WC2A 2JR. It is authorised and regulated in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority ("FCA") in respect of its UK activities. Its number on the Financial Services Register is 464494.
AES Middle East Insurance Broker LLC is regulated by the UAE Insurance Authority, licence no. 189 and registered with the UAE Ministry of Economy, UAE, licence no. 571368, and Commercial Registration no. 75162, Note that this authority regulates and authorise AES Middle East Insurance Broker LLC in respect of those activities it performs in / or from the UAE (not the DIFC - see below)
AES Financial Services Ltd (AESFSL), trading as AES International, is registered with the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) licence no. 2128, and is regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) In respect of those activities AES FSL performs in or from the DIFC,
Do you provide pension transfer advice for expats in Dubai?
Yes - AES financial Services Limited provides advice on pension transfers to expats, from its London office, under UK regulation and law. If you are thinking of transferring your pension you should always seek advice from a pension transfer specialist, with the necesssary permissions.
Do you provide advice on offshore banking?
We belive “If you are from country A but live in country B, then you should bank in country C.”
Local laws here in the UAE mean that the government of Dubai has the right to freeze your bank account without notice, meaning you and or your spouse could be in a position where you have no access to any money. Reasons for freezing a bank account include the death of a resident or it has even been known for bank accounts to be frozen following a car accident. The process of getting your account to be unfrozen and regain access to your capital is not an easy process. Sharia law prevails here and thus with it the Government have ultimate power over your bank account.
Banking offshore as an expat can help ensure that should anything happen to you, you know your money is being held securely in another location.
Banking offshore can provide a safe haven for your capital whilst providing flexible and versatile investment accounts, that allow for superior investment growth and suitability of services, including :
Of the host of other services available, the most commonly used are:
GBP, USD and EUR account facilities opened as standard
Lending secured against UK property
loans secured against your investment portfolio
Highly competitive foreign exchange rates
low cost investment solutions on the integrated investment platform
Transparent fee charging
Complete flexibility – no penalties for withdrawal of funds
What happens if I move country?
We are experts in cross boarder financial advice. No matter where you move to. Investment portfolios and offhsore accounts are versatile and allow for portability,
What investment solutions do you offer to expats in Dubai?
We offer a suite of investments and underling investment mandates, including access to low cost ETF's and passive portfolios. We are also pioneers in Dubai of investment science and evidence based investing. To find out more visit the Investment Services page
How often will my portfolio/investments be reviewed?
At least once annually we will conduct a Progress Review, which will review past perfromance and incorporate cashflow planning alongside a holistic view of your financial plan. If necessary your asset allocation may be altered and your portfolio rebalanced.
We are also always at hand to discuss performance, market activity and any other financial aspects that may arise as a client
Why Is working with a fee based adviser better than one who charges commission?
Commission paid from financial advice was banned in the UK in 2014, via the Retail Distribution Review. It essentially prevents financial advisers making commission from giving advice and recommending investment products and solutions. Currently (2019) many advsiers in Dubai still operate using a commission based model.
Where this model is used, there is often an obvious conflict of interest. Are the investment solutions the right ones for you, or for the person/company recommending them?
Fee-based advisers and advsiory firms, can practice with a much greater degree of objectivity and independence. They cannot be swayed by personal benefits that may come along with certain recommendations.
Choosing to work with a fee based adviser will ensure there is no bias in the selection of an investment solution. And most importantly that you will continue to receive robust ongoing regular advice, not just a recommendation at outset!
Do you provide life insurance to expats in Dubai?
Yes we provide various Life insurance and Critical illness plans for expats.
Life insurane can pay your dependents money as a lump sum or as regular payments if you die. A life insurance policy is a contract with an insurance company. In exchange for premium payments, it’s designed to provide you with the reassurance that your dependents will be looked after if you’re no longer there to provide. When comparing life insuarance policies, you can choose how much a policy will pay out, how long the policy lasts for and who the payout goes to if you die. Get in touch if you would like to receive some initial quotes. You can read more about insurance on the
What is cash flow planning?
Cashflow planning is the process of assessing your current and forecasted wealth, along with inflows (income) and outflows (expenditure), to enable a picture to be created of your finances both now and in the future.
Whereas budgets are based on your active plans for the future, a cash flow forecast is an estimate of future projected income and expenditures.
How much can I expect my investments to grow by?
This will depend largely on considerations such as:
Your attitude to risk/risk appetitie
Capacity for loss
Circumstances and objectives
An investor with a balanced attitude to risk could expect a return of between 6/7 percent er annum. Depending on the investment mandate.
There is a direct link between risk and reward: for example, if you are aiming for a high level of return, then you will need to take a higher level of risk (and higher risk of capital loss) and be prepared to tolerate high levels of volatility in the value of your portfolio. The greater the return you seek, the more risk you should be prepared to take.As to your agreed risk profile. Note that past perfromance is never a guaruntee of future performance.
The above considerations will all be taken into account alongside the completion of a risk profie questionnaire to determine your risk appetite. Although the questionnnaire is never taken in isolation it will provide a guidline of the most suitable assett allocation for you and thus provide projected forecasts for growth
Should I pay off my mortgage or invest?
Paying off your mortgage early can be a good financial decision.
However this question tends to be emotion based. Based on the psychological benefits of being debt-free, as your mortgage is probably the biggest debt you will ever have.
Aside form the satisfaction fo being debt free, of course the biggy is you save on monthly interest and will have more equity in your home.
Conversely however if you pay off mortgage instead of investing there is opportunity cost –
Every pound/dirham or dollar you spend on paying your mortgage down you can't use for another financial goal. If the interest rate is extremely low on your mortgage you may be better off investing the money instead to get a better return.
To give you an example - If your mortgage rate is 4.5%, your rate of return from prepaying your mortgage is just 4.5%. By contrast, the S&P 500 has produced historical annualized total returns (including dividends) close to 10%, which is significantly higher.
Remember too that your home is not a liquid asset: Selling your home is time-consuming, difficult, and costly, which makes it hard to get money out of your house if you need it to meet financial needs.