On the NRI investment trail - Prefers NRI accounts

Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) earn in dollars, euros or rials, and can invest anywhere in the world. But Meera Siva finds that many of them prefer to invest a large part of their savings in India  

Durga Iyer, 32, is a management consultant in Boston, US. She says the family has not decided on the country in which they want to settle down and has therefore split the investments equally between India and the US.

The savings are for long-term goals, such as retirement and her child’s education. So, she has made long-term investments, such as real estate, and a combination of debt and equity funds.

She believes in doing the research herself but takes guidance from her parents, who are in the banking industry.

Iyer is a believer in liquidity. “Having liquidity in your place of domicile is like having financial insurance for any unforeseen turn of events,” she says. “Banks in India offer many options, such as NRE and FCNR accounts that are great for investment liquidity and flexibility,” she notes.

They also offer higher rates of interest on fixed deposits; and re-investing returns into a SIP is good for long-term returns, she suggests. Other options she likes are India-based mutual funds where one can invest from overseas.

Real estate remains the biggest daunting investment to manage for NRIs, she notes. “There is a lot of lag in meeting deliverables and there are also fraudulent marketing schemes that become a trap for NRIs,” she laments.

She recommends having legal counsel and help from local trusted advisers before making any investment in property.


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