Overseas Filipino Workers or OFWs are deemed modern-day heroes in the Philippines for many reasons. Not only do they make enormous sacrifices for the family, but they also make big contributions to the country’s economic growth via remittance services.
If you’re an OFW, one of your main priorities is to send back money for your family’s growing needs. But you can also set aside some of your hard-earned money to make it grow, not only for your loved ones but for your own future.
Most OFWs dream of being able to come home one day with a nice home and fat bank account waiting for them. And those who have realized these dreams invested their money one way or another. And investing goes beyond stocks and bonds.
Learn the different investment opportunities popular among OFWs.
Investment properties are a popular source of passive income for our modern-day heroes. In fact, a majority of condominium owners who rent out their units are OFWs. Some are also expanding their portfolio into affordable house and lot packages. Real estate investments make sense because they provide additional income for the short term and could become their primary residences in the future. The local market is pretty much stable and low-risk as well.
For OFWs with busy schedules and minimal investing know-how, mutual funds are a great option. This is because these funds are diversified and managed by expert traders, which means OFWs can just sit back and wait for their money to grow. Compared to stocks and other commodities, mutual funds are also deemed low-risk, making them a good beginner option.
Pag-IBIG MP2 Savings
Another safe and easy way to earn passive income is to join the Pag-IBIG MP2 savings program. The program lets you earn dividends, and while it isn’t much now, the dividend rates are getting higher every year (currently at 7.65%). Your dividends will then compound the following year if you don’t withdraw them. What’s more, these dividends are tax-free.
SSS Flexi Fund
It’s always good to have a retirement plan, OFW or not. If your goal is to become financially independent after retirement, you can open an SSS Flexi Fund. This voluntary savings-investment program is designed for overseas SSS members to build their retirement fund and enjoy tax- and risk-free benefits. It’s also very flexible as you can make early withdrawals, but it’s best to not make a withdrawal so you can earn incentives.
Having a life insurance plan is a must, and picking the right one is essential. A VUL or variable universal life insurance is life insurance that doubles as an investment fund. It lets you set aside a portion of your premium to be invested in diversified products like mutual funds, shares of stocks, unit investment trust funds (UITFs), and so on. In short, it lets OFWs get themselves insured and at the same time grow their money.
Investing is one of the best ways to achieve a financially secure retirement. But if you don’t have the time and technical know-how to invest, it’s best to leave retirement planning to professionals. With a PERA Investment plan, OFWs can invest up to P200,000 per year and have the freedom to choose investments based on their needs and risk appetites. The main advantage of this plan is that you’ll enjoy higher investment returns via task benefits. However, it comes with certain risks, early withdrawal penalties, and other administrative fees.
If you’re looking for an investment strategy that’s more liquid, meaning the assets can be readily converted to cash, then forex trading may be a good option for you. This decentralized global market holds the world’s currency trades where the average trading volume amounts to over $5 trillion. It comes with a steep learning curve but it can be quite lucrative if you stay active.
Another legal way to grow your money is through peer-to-peer lending or micro-lending. Both methods allow you to lend money and earn through interest rates. You can start with a small capital and make use of apps like Lending Club, MoneyMatch PH, and BitBond. If you choose to invest in P2P lending, be sure to research the company first and read what other investors have to say about them.
Many OFWs dream of running their own business, but it can be hard to juggle a full-time job abroad and a business. Instead, many OFWs are opting to invest in other businesses through debt investments or equity. In other words, they’re buying an ownership stake or providing capital in exchange for profits.
Investing your money is a big leap towards building wealth and attaining financial freedom. Just make sure you diversify, do your research, and employ a team of professionals to give you sound advice as you go along.