What Happens to Your Money When You Invest

What Happens to Your Money When You Invest

“Don’t let making a living prevent you from making a life” ― John Wooden

3 min read

What Happens to Your Money When You Invest

What Happens to Your Money When You Invest

“Don’t let making a living prevent you from making a life” ― John Wooden

3 min read

When you decide to invest your hard-earned money, it goes through the financial landscape like a tiny explorer navigating a vast and complex world. For you, it is like planting a seed in the hope of receiving a bountiful harvest.

But have you ever wondered where your money actually goes when you make an investment? If you have, you’re in luck! Read on to find out.

Investing in Stocks: Owning a Piece of Companies

One common destination for your investment is the stock market. When you buy stocks, you’re essentially purchasing ownership (shares) in a company. Your money becomes a valuable asset on the company’s balance sheet, and you become a shareholder, entitled to a portion of the company’s profits, known as dividends. Your investment supports the company’s operations, growth initiatives, and innovation. So, when you invest in stocks, your money goes into the engine that drives businesses forward. It’s like having a stake in the success of companies and sharing in their prosperity.

Stock prices fluctuate based on market demand, company performance, and other economic factors.

Investing in Bonds: Lending Your Money

Bonds are essentially ‘debt securities’, where investors lend money to governments, corporations, or other entities in exchange for periodic interest payments, known as coupon payments, and the return of the bond’s face value, known as the principal or par value, upon maturity (at the end of the agreed term). Click here to read all you need to know about bonds.

Bonds come in various types, including government bonds (issued by governments), corporate bonds (issued by corporations), municipal bonds (issued by local governments), and more specialised bonds like mortgage-backed securities (backed by pools of mortgages) and convertible bonds (which can be converted into common stock).

In essence, when you invest in a bond, you lend your money to someone else in exchange for regular interest payments as well as the bond’s original value at maturity.

ETFs Investment Process

Typically, the most common investment to make if you are going at it alone is into an ETF (Exchange-Traded Funds). You can find out exactly what an ETF is and our guide to how to choose the ETF or Index Fund for you by clicking here.

When you invest in Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs), your money typically goes through a series of steps within the financial system. Here’s a simplified breakdown of where your money goes:

  1. Investor Contribution: When you decide to invest in an ETF, you purchase shares of the fund through a brokerage account. Your money, along with that of other investors, is pooled together.

  2. Creation of ETF Shares: To create new ETF shares, a specialised entity called an “Authorised Participant” (AP), often a large financial institution or market maker, assembles a basket of the underlying assets. These assets can include stocks, bonds, commodities, or other securities that the ETF aims to track. The AP delivers this basket of assets to the ETF issuer in exchange for ETF shares.

  3. Trading on Stock Exchanges: Once the ETF shares are created, they can be bought and sold on stock exchanges, much like individual stocks. Investors can purchase these shares from other investors who are looking to sell or directly from the ETF issuer in some cases.

  4. Index Tracking: ETFs are designed to track specific market indices or benchmarks. The ETF issuer manages the portfolio to mimic the performance of the underlying index. This passive management strategy helps keep costs low.

  5. Dividends and Interest: As the ETF holds the underlying assets, it receives dividends, interest payments, or other income generated by those assets. These payments are typically distributed to ETF shareholders.

  6. Redemption of ETF Shares: When an investor decides to sell their ETF shares, the process works in reverse. The shares are sold on the exchange, and the investor receives the current market price for their shares. The AP can then redeem these shares with the ETF issuer in exchange for the underlying assets or cash.

To summarise, your money is invested in the underlying assets held by the ETF, and the ETF shares represent your ownership in those assets until such time as you choose to sell the fund.

How To Get Your Money Back: Selling Your Investments

Getting your money back from investments involves several steps, and the process can vary depending on the type of investment you’ve made. Here’s a general overview of how you can receive your invested funds:

  1. Stocks and ETFs: When you invest in stocks or Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs), you have the flexibility to sell your holdings at any time during the trading hours of the stock exchange where they are listed. To get your money back, you need to place a sell order through your brokerage account. Once the order is executed, you’ll receive the proceeds in your brokerage account. You can then transfer the funds from your brokerage account to your bank account. Keep in mind that stock prices fluctuate throughout the trading day, so the amount you receive may vary depending on the prevailing market price when your order is filled.

  2. Bonds: Bond investments typically involve receiving periodic interest payments and, upon maturity, the return of the bond’s face value. If you hold an individual bond until its maturity date, you’ll receive the face value of the bond, which is the initial principal amount you invested. However, if you wish to sell a bond before its maturity, you can do so through the secondary bond market. Bond prices in the secondary market may differ from their face value due to changes in interest rates and credit risk. Selling a bond before maturity may result in a capital gain or loss.

  3. Mutual Funds: When you invest in mutual funds, you can redeem your shares directly with the fund company at the current net asset value (NAV) price, which is calculated at the end of each trading day. To redeem your mutual fund shares, you typically submit a redemption request to the fund company through your brokerage or directly if you have an account with the fund company. The fund company will then send you the redemption proceeds, usually via check or electronic transfer, which you can deposit into your bank account.

It’s important to note that the time it takes to receive your investment proceeds can vary. Stock and ETF sales are generally settled within a few business days, whilst bond transactions and mutual fund redemptions may take a bit longer. Additionally, some investments, such as real estate and certain alternative investments, may have longer exit timelines and specific processes for cashing out. Always check with your Patterson Mills Financial Adviser or financial institution for the specific procedures related to your investments.

Master the Investment Process with Patterson Mills

Investing your money is a powerful tool for building wealth over time. It’s not a one-size-fits-all endeavour, but rather a maze with various paths to choose from. Understanding where your money goes when you invest, how to make informed investment choices, and how to retrieve your funds when needed are crucial aspects of your overall financial planning and investment strategy.

Patterson Mills have the knowledge and experience to ensure your money is invested in the right places and remains under your control throughout your investment term. Investing requires patience, research, and a clear strategy. So, whether you’re considering venturing into stocks, bonds, mutual funds, or other investment vehicles, get in touch with us today and book your initial, no-cost and no-obligation meeting. Just send us an e-mail to or call us direct at +41 21 801 36 84 and we shall be pleased to assist you.

Please note that all information within this article has been prepared for informational purposes only. This article does not constitute financial, legal or tax advice. Always ensure you speak to a regulated Financial Adviser before making any financial decisions.


The Pursuit of Happiness: What Money Can Buy

The Pursuit of Happiness: What Money Can Buy

“A rich man is nothing but a poor man with money” — W. C. Fields

3 min read

The Pursuit of Happiness: What Money Can Buy

“A rich man is nothing but a poor man with money” — W. C. Fields

3 min read

In a world that often pits money against happiness, here we are looking at uncovering the subtle but significant ways in which wealth and well-being intersect. Whilst it may be true that money can’t buy happiness in its purest form, it’s equally true that financial resources can play a pivotal role in enhancing overall contentment.

To find out about the fascinating relationship between money and happiness, have a read of this article that discusses the art of living a happier life whilst maintaining your financial prosperity.

The Science of Happiness

Happiness is a complex emotion, and its pursuit has intrigued philosophers, psychologists, and scientists for centuries. Recent research in positive psychology suggests that whilst money alone can’t guarantee happiness, it can certainly contribute to it. The key lies in how we allocate our resources. Investing in experiences, strong social connections, and personal growth can bring about lasting happiness. So, the next time you consider that holiday, think of it not as an expense but as an investment in your well-being!

Furthermore, studies show that achieving financial stability can significantly reduce stress, a major happiness detractor. The peace of mind that comes with knowing you have a financial safety net can boost your overall satisfaction with life. In essence, the science of happiness reveals that managing your money wisely can pave the way for a more joyful life.

Money Can Buy Comfort

Imagine waking up in a comfortable bed, sipping your favourite coffee, and heading off to work stress-free. Money can provide the resources to create such a scenario, and that comfort can significantly impact your happiness. Investing in a good mattress, quality coffee, or even a reliable car can enhance your daily life experiences. It’s not about extravagance, but recognising that small comforts can lead to greater well-being. 

Moreover, financial resources can enable you to live in a safe neighborhood, access quality healthcare, and secure a better education for yourself and your loved ones. These factors contribute to a sense of security and contentment that money, when used wisely, can provide. So, whether it’s upgrading your living situation or investing in your health, consider these as ways your financial choices can enhance your happiness.

The Joys of Giving

One of the most beautiful aspects of money is its potential to make a positive impact on the lives of others. Generosity has been linked to increased happiness levels, and your financial resources can fuel your capacity to give. Whether it’s supporting a charitable cause, helping a friend in need, or treating your loved ones to a special gift, these acts of kindness can bring immense joy.

In addition, investing in experiences with loved ones, such as traveling together or hosting gatherings, creates lasting memories and strengthens social bonds. These shared moments often become a source of happiness that transcends the value of money spent. So, remember that your wealth can be a tool not only for your own happiness but also for spreading joy to others.

Pursuing Passions and Hobbies

Many of us have passions or hobbies that bring us immense joy and fulfillment. Money can empower you to pursue these interests more fully. Whether it’s taking up a new hobby, exploring an artistic talent, or engaging in adventure sports, your financial resources can provide the means to follow your heart’s desires.

Investing in your passions can lead to a richer and more enjoyable life. It’s not about extravagant spending but about allocating resources to the things that truly matter to you. When you engage in activities you love, you experience a sense of purpose and satisfaction that money can facilitate.

Financial Security and Peace of Mind

Financial stability is a significant contributor to overall happiness. The stress and anxiety that come with financial insecurity can severely impact your well-being. Money, when managed wisely, can provide the foundation for a secure future.

By saving and investing prudently, you can build a financial safety net that offers peace of mind during challenging times. Knowing you have the resources to weather unexpected emergencies or pursue new opportunities can reduce stress levels and enhance your overall happiness. In essence, financial security is a crucial aspect of using money to create a happier life.

Experiences Over Possessions

The age-old adage that experiences bring more happiness than possessions holds true. Investing your money in memorable experiences like travel, concerts, or dining with friends often leads to longer-lasting joy than buying material goods. These experiences create cherished memories and contribute to your overall happiness.

Also, experiences with loved ones can strengthen your relationships, fostering a sense of belonging and emotional well-being. So, when contemplating how to spend your money, consider prioritising experiences that enrich your life and create lasting happiness.

Achieving Financial Goals

Setting and achieving financial goals can be a source of immense satisfaction. Whether it’s saving for a dream holiday, buying your first home, or planning for retirement, working towards these objectives gives you a sense of purpose and accomplishment.

Furthermore, the discipline required to manage your finances and make progress towards your goals can translate into other aspects of your life, enhancing your overall sense of self-control and achievement. Achieving financial milestones can boost your confidence and instill a sense of pride in your financial management skills.

The Art of Balancing Wealth and Wellbeing

In the quest to understand the intriguing relationship between money and happiness, we discover that it’s not a matter of one versus the other but actually a harmonious balance between the two. Money, when used wisely, can indeed buy happiness, not always through the acquisition of possessions but through the experiences, comfort, and opportunities it affords. Investing in relationships, personal growth, and financial security can all contribute to a life filled with joy.

As you navigate growing your finances, remember that happiness isn’t solely defined by your bank account balance. It’s the moments you create, the lives you touch, and the sense of security you build that truly matter. So, should you wish to receive guidance on managing your finances in a way that aligns with your pursuit of happiness, it’s your lucky day.

Patterson Mills are here to help. Get in touch with us today and book your initial, no-cost and no-obligation meeting. Just send us an e-mail to or call us direct at +41 21 801 36 84 and we shall be pleased to assist you.

Please note that all information within this article has been prepared for informational purposes only. This article does not constitute financial, legal or tax advice. Always ensure you speak to a regulated Financial Adviser before making any financial decisions.

Financial Planning

What to Do When Money Finds You

What to Do When Money Finds You

“If we command our wealth, we shall be rich and free; if our wealth commands us, we are poor indeed” — Edmund Burke

3 min read

What to Do When Money Finds You

“If we command our wealth, we shall be rich and free; if our wealth commands us, we are poor indeed” — Edmund Burke

3 min read

Life sometimes surprises us with unexpected wealth. Whether you’ve received an inheritance, won the lottery, sold a property, or even received a substantial bonus at work, managing sudden wealth requires careful consideration. Here’s a practical guide to help you navigate these turn of events.

Pause and Breathe

First, take a deep breath. Sudden wealth can be overwhelming, and rash decisions may lead to regrets later. Give yourself time to absorb the news and adjust to the idea of having more money than before.

As you pause, it’s essential to understand that this isn’t just about money; it’s a significant change in your life. Consider how this newfound wealth might impact your daily routine, your relationships, and your long-term goals. Reflect on what truly matters to you and what you want to achieve.

Seek Professional Advice

Consider consulting with Financial Advisers and estate planners. They can provide insights on how to minimise tax implications, invest wisely, and create a long-term financial plan.

Professional advice is invaluable, especially when dealing with substantial sums of money. Your Financial Adviser can help you make informed decisions based on your unique circumstances and goals. They can guide you in optimising your investments, managing risks, and preserving wealth for generations to come.

Pay Off Debts

If you have outstanding debts, such as credit card balances or loans, consider using some of your newfound wealth to clear them. Reducing high-interest debts can free up more money for your financial goals.

Debt repayment might not be the most exciting use of your newfound wealth, but it’s a financially responsible move. Eliminating debts can bring you peace of mind and help you redirect your financial resources towards more meaningful objectives. Plus, it can improve your credit score, which may benefit you in the future.

Emergency Fund

Ensure you have an adequate emergency fund. This safety net provides financial security during unexpected events and can prevent you from dipping into your newfound wealth for unexpected expenses.

An emergency fund is a cornerstone of financial stability. It ensures that you’re prepared for life’s curveballs without derailing your long-term financial plans. Aim to have at least three to six months’ worth of living expenses set aside in a high-yield savings account.

Diversify Investments

Avoid putting all your money into a single investment or asset class. Diversifying your investments can help manage risk and provide a more stable financial future.

Diversification is a fundamental principle of investment strategy. By spreading your investments across various asset classes, such as stocks, bonds, real estate, and alternative investments, you can reduce the impact of a poor-performing asset on your overall portfolio. Consult with your Financial Adviser to create a diversified investment portfolio tailored to your risk tolerance and goals.

Create a Financial Plan

Work with professional Advisers, such as Patterson Mills, to develop a comprehensive financial plan that aligns with your long-term goals. This plan should account for your retirement, children’s education, and any other financial aspirations.

A well-structured financial plan acts as a roadmap to your financial future. It outlines your financial goals, investment strategies, and savings targets. Regularly review and adjust your plan to accommodate changes in your life, financial situation, and goals.

Budget Wisely

Even with newfound wealth, budgeting remains crucial. Develop a realistic spending plan that ensures you’re living within your means and not overspending.

A budget helps you manage your finances efficiently and avoid unnecessary expenditures. It can also help you strike a balance between enjoying your newfound wealth and saving for the future. Consider working with a Financial Adviser to create a budget that aligns with your financial goals and lifestyle.

Enjoy but Don't Splurge

Whilst it’s tempting to splurge on luxuries, consider balancing enjoyment with prudent financial decisions. Prioritise your long-term financial security alongside immediate gratification.

Enjoying your newfound wealth is natural, but moderation is key. Set aside a portion for indulgences, but also allocate funds towards your financial goals. By striking a balance between enjoying the present and securing your future, you can make the most of your sudden wealth without jeopardising your financial well-being.

Your Path to Financial Prosperity

Your sudden influx of wealth, whether through inheritance, a lottery win, property sale or any other method, can be both exhilarating and daunting. It presents a unique opportunity to make smart financial decisions that can impact your life for the better. By following these steps and seeking professional advice from Patterson Mills, you can navigate the twists and turns of newfound prosperity with confidence.

Remember, wealth is a tool to help you achieve your goals and lead the life you desire. Embrace this financial gain, but do so with careful consideration and a well-thought-out plan.

Get in touch with us today and book your initial, no-cost and no-obligation meeting. Just send us an e-mail to or call us direct at +41 21 801 36 84 and we shall be pleased to assist you.

Please note that all information within this article has been prepared for informational purposes only. This article does not constitute financial, legal or tax advice. Always ensure you speak to a regulated Financial Adviser before making any financial decisions.


The Strength of the Swiss Franc

The Strength of the Swiss Franc

“The Swiss franc is a better bet than gold and the Swiss economy more solid than the granite face of the Matterhorn” — Paul Bilton

4 min read

The Strength of the Swiss Franc

“The Swiss franc is a better bet than gold and the Swiss economy more solid than the granite face of the Matterhorn” — Paul Bilton

4 min read

The Swiss Franc, symbolised as CHF, stands as one of the world’s most robust and stable currencies. Its strength is a result of several intertwining factors, collectively shaping its unique status in the global financial arena. Read on to find out exactly what they are.

Economic Stability

Switzerland’s reputation for economic stability is a cornerstone of the Swiss Franc’s strength. The country boasts a well-developed and diversified economy that spans various sectors, including finance, pharmaceuticals, and manufacturing. With consistently low unemployment rates and a robust GDP per capita, Switzerland enjoys a level of economic prosperity that inspires confidence in investors and central banks alike. Additionally, the Swiss economy’s resilience during global economic crises underscores its stability, further enhancing the appeal of the Swiss Franc.

Sound Monetary Policy

The Swiss National Bank (SNB) plays a pivotal role in maintaining the Franc’s strength. Its prudent monetary policy decisions encompass a range of measures, from interest rate management to strategic interventions in the currency market. These actions are meticulously designed to preserve both price stability and economic equilibrium. By consistently adhering to these principles, the SNB has earned a reputation as a trusted guardian of the Swiss Franc. Its unwavering commitment to sound policy not only stabilizes the currency but also bolsters its global credibility.

Safe-Haven Status

In times of global turbulence, the Swiss Franc assumes a role of paramount importance as a safe-haven currency. Its enviable stability and Switzerland’s longstanding reputation for neutrality make it an exceptionally appealing choice for investors seeking refuge during economic or geopolitical crises. The Swiss Franc’s safe-haven status is further underscored by the nation’s robust financial regulations, which prioritize investor protection and market integrity. This heightened demand during uncertain times can lead to increased value for the Franc, reinforcing its stature as a safe harbor.

Strong Banking Sector

Switzerland is renowned for its world-class banking and financial services industry. The country’s stringent banking regulations, combined with its commitment to financial privacy, have attracted individuals and businesses from around the world. This influx of capital not only fuels Switzerland’s financial sector but also contributes significantly to the strength of the Swiss Franc. The trust placed in Swiss banks and their expertise in wealth management further enhances the currency’s appeal, making it an asset of choice for both domestic and international investors.

Trade Surpluses

Switzerland consistently maintains trade surpluses, exporting more goods and services than it imports. This consistent trade surplus results in a steady influx of foreign currency into the country, thereby increasing the demand for the Swiss Franc. This perpetual cycle of trade balance strengthens the Franc’s value, underlining its role as a resilient and sought-after currency in the international arena. The surplus generated by Switzerland’s exports contributes significantly to the nation’s economic well-being and financial stability.

Political Stability

Switzerland’s long-standing political stability is another cornerstone of the Swiss Franc’s strength. The country’s system of direct democracy, characterized by frequent referendums and a tradition of consensus politics, creates an environment of remarkable predictability and security. This political stability enhances the Franc’s appeal as a reliable currency, especially during times of global uncertainty. Switzerland’s ability to maintain political harmony and neutrality further cements its reputation as a safe harbor for investors.

Low Inflation

Switzerland boasts a low and stable inflation rate, a critical factor in preserving the purchasing power of the Swiss Franc. Investors are drawn to currencies that consistently retain their value over time, and the Swiss Franc is no exception. The nation’s prudent monetary policies and effective price stability measures contribute to its remarkable record of maintaining inflation at bay. This low inflation environment not only safeguards the Franc’s worth but also solidifies its reputation as a currency of enduring strength.

High-Quality Exports

Switzerland’s reputation for producing high-quality exports is a driving force behind the Swiss Franc’s strength. These exports encompass a wide array of industries, including pharmaceuticals, machinery, luxury goods, and financial services. Swiss-made products often command premium prices in international markets, generating substantial revenue streams in foreign currencies. This continuous demand for Swiss exports bolsters the Swiss Franc’s value, reinforcing its position as a formidable global currency.

Strategic Location

Switzerland’s central location in Europe, combined with its robust trade relationships with neighboring countries, positions it as a pivotal hub for international commerce. This strategic significance is a compelling factor that contributes to the Swiss Franc’s prominence in the global financial system. The ease of conducting cross-border transactions and the nation’s role as a financial intermediary further elevate the currency’s standing in international finance.

Financial Expertise

The Swiss have cultivated a profound and enduring legacy of financial expertise that spans generations. Their unparalleled acumen in wealth management, banking, and finance is deeply rooted in the nation’s history. This expertise is a magnet for investors and financial institutions seeking the highest levels of competence and reliability. The application of Swiss financial wisdom not only adds to the appeal of the Swiss Franc but also reinforces Switzerland’s status as a global financial powerhouse.

Invest in Switzerland

The enduring strength of the Swiss Franc arises from a dynamic interplay of economic stability, sound monetary policy, safe-haven status, a robust banking sector, trade surpluses, political stability, low inflation, high-quality exports, strategic location, and unparalleled financial expertise. These factors collectively establish the Swiss Franc as a symbol of Switzerland’s unwavering commitment to financial excellence and stability in the global financial landscape.

If you are thinking about investing in Switzerland, make sure you do it with the right expertise behind you and talk to Patterson Mills, today.

Get in touch to book your initial, no-cost and no-obligation meeting. Or, send us an e-mail to or call us direct at +41 21 801 36 84 and we shall be pleased to assist you.

Financial Planning

Expats Guide to Mastering Money Management in Switzerland

Expats Guide to Mastering Money Management in Switzerland

“The more you know about money, the more you can make.” — Martha Stewart

3 min read

Expats Guide to Mastering Money Management in Switzerland

“The more you know about money, the more you can make.” — Martha Stewart

3 min read

As you embark on your Swiss adventure, it’s crucial to understand the ins and outs of managing money in this unique financial hub. Read on to delve into essential aspects of money management in Switzerland, where we will provide answers to key questions expats often have. This aims to give you a good starting knowledge for your finances.

Is Switzerland Good for Saving Money?

Switzerland has long been associated with financial stability and a strong currency, making it an appealing choice for expats looking to save money. Here are some factors to consider:

  • High Savings Potential: Switzerland’s high income levels and robust economy create opportunities for substantial savings. Expatriates often find that their earning potential increases significantly when working in Switzerland. See our article on Smart Financial Moves for Expats in Switzerland here.

  • Low Inflation: Historically, Switzerland has maintained low inflation rates, helping to preserve the value of savings over time. This stability contributes to the country’s reputation as a safe place to grow wealth.

  • Access to Diverse Investment Options: Switzerland offers a wide range of investment opportunities, from traditional savings accounts to sophisticated investment products. This diversity allows you to tailor your investment strategy to your financial goals.

What Is the Safest Investment in Switzerland?

Switzerland is known for its safety and stability, and these qualities extend to its investment options. Some of the safest investment choices in Switzerland include:

  • Swiss Franc (CHF): The Swiss Franc is considered one of the world’s most stable currencies. Swiss Franc-denominated savings accounts and government bonds are considered safe havens for preserving capital.

  • Real Estate: Switzerland has a stable real estate market, making property investments a relatively safe option. Investing in real estate can provide both a safe haven for your capital and rental income.

  • Swiss Blue-Chip Stocks: Large Swiss companies with global reach often provide stable returns. While no investment is entirely without risk, Swiss blue-chip stocks have a history of resilience.

How Can Expats Maximise Their Investment Returns in Switzerland?

Expats can take steps to optimise their investment returns in Switzerland:

  • Diversification: Diversify your investment portfolio across different asset classes to spread risk and potentially enhance returns.

  • Tax-Efficient Investing: Explore tax-efficient investment strategies to minimise your tax liability and maximise after-tax returns.

  • Regular Portfolio Review: Periodically review and adjust your investment portfolio to align with your financial goals and risk tolerance.

How Can We Reduce Costs in Switzerland?

Switzerland’s high standard of living can come with a corresponding cost of living. Here are strategies to manage expenses effectively:

  • Budgeting: Create a detailed budget to track your income and expenses, helping you identify areas where you can cut costs.
  • Tax Planning: Explore tax optimization strategies to reduce your overall tax burden.
  • Compare Prices: Switzerland can be expensive, so compare prices before making purchases, especially for housing, groceries, and services.
  • Health Insurance: Research health insurance options to find the most cost-effective plan while meeting legal requirements. It is not abnormal to search for new quotes each year.

What Are the Key Considerations for Currency Exchange in Switzerland?

Currency exchange is essential for managing finances as an expatriate:

  • Exchange Rate Fluctuations: Swiss Franc exchange rates can be volatile. Keep an eye on exchange rates to maximise the value of your currency conversions.

  • Currency Conversion Costs: Different banks and currency exchange services may offer varying rates and fees for currency conversion. It’s advisable to compare options for the best rates.

  • Forward Contracts: Some financial institutions offer forward contracts, allowing you to lock in exchange rates for future currency conversions. This can help mitigate currency risk.

Is It Advisable to Convert Foreign Currency Savings to Swiss Francs?

Expats often have savings in their home country’s currency and may wonder whether it’s advisable to convert these savings to Swiss Francs (CHF). The decision largely depends on your individual circumstances, including your long-term plans and exchange rate considerations.

  • Currency Risk: Leaving foreign currency savings exposed to exchange rate fluctuations can pose currency risk. If your savings are in a currency that is highly volatile or expected to weaken against the Swiss Franc, it may be prudent to consider converting a portion or all of your savings to CHF.

  • Diversification: Diversifying your savings across multiple currencies can also be a strategy to mitigate risk. Consider consulting with a Financial Adviser to assess the potential benefits of a diversified currency portfolio.

What Are the Options for Saving for a Home in Switzerland as an Expat?

Saving for a home in Switzerland can be a significant financial goal:

  • Regular Savings: Consider setting up a dedicated savings account to systematically save for a down payment.

  • Third Pillar Pension Plan (3a): Some Pillar 3a accounts allow you to use funds for the purchase of your first home, providing tax benefits and a dedicated savings vehicle.

  • Mortgage Options: Explore mortgage options available to expats in Switzerland. Requirements and terms can vary, so it’s advisable to consult a mortgage Adviser.

What Are the Steps for Estate Planning in Switzerland?

Estate planning is essential for ensuring your assets are handled according to your wishes. In Switzerland:

  • Write a Will: Draft a will to specify how you want your assets distributed upon your passing. Swiss law allows a fair degree of freedom in testamentary dispositions.

  • Consider Marriage Contracts: If you’re married, consider whether a marriage contract (prenuptial agreement) is appropriate to define property ownership and inheritance rights.

  • Plan for Inheritance Tax: Switzerland imposes inheritance taxes at the cantonal level, and rates can vary significantly. Careful estate planning can help reduce the tax burden on your heirs.

How Does Swiss Taxation Work for Expatriates?

Swiss taxation can be intricate, and understanding your tax obligations as an expatriate is crucial. Here’s an overview:

  • Residency Status: Your tax liability in Switzerland depends on your residency status. Swiss residents are subject to federal, cantonal, and municipal taxes, while non-residents are typically taxed on Swiss-sourced income only.

  • Tax Treaties: Switzerland has tax treaties with many countries to prevent double taxation. Expats should explore these treaties to determine how they apply to their specific situation.

  • Tax Deductions: Switzerland offers various tax deductions, including those for education, childcare, and contributions to the third pillar pension plan (Pillar 3a). Taking advantage of these deductions can help reduce your tax burden.

Ensure Your Strategy is Working for You

In a country known for its precision, your financial strategy can become a masterpiece of stability and growth. Switzerland’s commitment to financial excellence extends to those who choose to make it their financial home.

To get started, we welcome you to get in touch today to book your initial, no-cost and no-obligation meeting. Or, send us an e-mail to or call us direct at +41 21 801 36 84 and we shall be pleased to assist you.

Please note that all information within this article has been prepared for informational purposes only. Always ensure you speak to a regulated Financial Adviser and before making any financial decisions.