How To Invest Money Safely In the UAE

Nov 14

By now, if you have been in Dubai for more than 6 months, you would have been called by 8 banks, 56 ‘financial experts’ and countless other people vying for your attention and money.

The script is often the same and so are the products, with financial advisors a dime a dozen. It is safe to say that most of the advisors and institutions who call you, are out to ‘make a sale’.

Believe me, I get the calls myself.

So I write this article in the hope of showing you what’s ‘Good’, what’s ‘Bad’ and what is downright ‘ugly’ in the investment world in the UAE, at least in my humble opinion. I have been a client of the industry myself since 1998. I started my first ‘Savings plan’ back in 1998 on the advice of a financial advisor who was referred to me by a dear friend.

I respect people who are referred to me because they tend to be honest more often than not, and since I trust the judgement of my friend or colleague who may have used their services.

I joined the company that was my financial advisory firm 5 years ago because I liked what they did for me and the positive impact proper financial planning had on my life. I still am a client of the industry myself with my own investments and insurances that take care of my personal goals. So most of the following advice is also based on my own investment experience.

You see, I have been there, done that, and learnt from my mistakes.

Step 1 – Understand the Basics, and consider the following

In the current economic conditions, most people would agree that there is no such thing as ‘Job security’ anymore. The first thing to do is set aside 6 months of your salary as an emergency fund. If you are a business owner, set aside 6 months of your average monthly income from the business.

Before you invest, consider the objective of the investment. If your objective is clear, the chances of achieving it increases significantly. Moreover, if your objective has a strong emotional significance, you are less likely to spend the money.

If you are investing for a term shorter than 5 years, markets may end up lower than where you started, depending on when you invested. If the term is shorter, try fixed income products.

Generally the kind of investment you can get into depends on ‘When you need your money back?’. Always have clarity on this question.

Investments cannot be done by themselves, i.e. the type of investments you have done in the past could dictate what you should invest into in the future. Simple rule of thumb is not to ‘Put all your eggs in one basket’.

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Step 2 – Know the 3 Musketeers of Investment

The next biggest hurdle you will face is balancing the 3 musketeers of investment. Read about them here.


About the Author

Amit is an Independent Financial Advisor, based in Dubai since 1997. He is part of the prestigious ‘Million Dollar Round Table’ (MDRT), which is an elite club of the best financial advisors worldwide. He has authored the ‘6-Step Financial Success Guide’, and the book ‘Creating, Preserving, Distributing Wealth’. He helps business owners and professionals ‘Create A Second Income’ through investments.