Domiciliary Account is an account with which you can hold your money in a foreign currency.
It is like your regular bank account, but instead of your money being valued in naira, it will be valued in a foreign currency like US dollars, UK’s pound sterling, etc., depending on your choice of domiciliary account.
For you to receive money from a foreign country using wire transfer to your bank account in Nigeria, you will need to have a domiciliary account, which is one of its advantages in many.
Requirements to Open a Domiciliary Account
For you to have a dom account in Nigeria, the requirements are similar across banks with the below being the common you should have:
- Account Opening Form: similar to one you might have seen while creating your regular naira bank account with spaces for you to provide personal information, residential and in some cases, sources of funds for the dom account
- Most also requires you to provide referral letters (not necessarily from someone that has a domiciliary account but the person must have an active current account with any bank in Nigeria)
- A nationally valid means of identification: that is any of voters card, driver’s license, national identity card, international passport and/or , CERPAC card for foreigners
- As a proof of residency, you might be asked to provide an utility bill receipt
- Also note the currency of the account as it must be domiciled in a particular currency e.g dollars, pounds, euro
- Minimum Opening Balance: most banks expect you to have some minimum funds to start with, usually from $100 for USD based domiciliary account.
How to Choose the Best Bank for Domiciliary Account
When it comes to working with a bank regarding your dom account, it depends on the purpose for which the account is opened for:
- If you need one to save your money: consider a bank that allows you an easy access to your funds. That is to say, you should consider if you can access it with a mobile phone or has enough physical branches when you need to do transactions. Some banks even have designated types of domiciliary accounts that allows you to earn interest on savings.
- If you need one to receive international money transfer: many money transfer operators has partnering banks in Nigeria that allows you to receive money directly to your bank account or even pick the cash up at a branch. So if you receive money regularly from foreign countries more through one money transfer operator, it will make better sense for you to choose the primary bank partner of that provider.
How to Fund Domiciliary Account
Dom account apart from holding foreign currency is not different from your regular bank account. That means, you can have money deposited in it similar to the ways you do with your naira bank accounts:
- Bank Branch: visit a bank branch with your naira and you can easily buy the foreign currency equivalence and pay it at the desk into your dom account
- Money Transfer: you can also fund it by accepting money transfer from a foreign currency domiciled account. This could be from a friend in Nigeria who sends fund from his dom account to yours, a relative in a foreign country sending you some money or just receiving some for business reasons
What Currency is a Domiciliary Account?
Domiciliary account can be in any currency other than in naira. It must be a single currency domiciled account, that means if yours is a dollar dom account, you can only pay or receive into it USD. You cannot accept pounds sterling directly into a dollar dom account.
Most of the popular includes:
- US Dollar
Having a domiciliary account comes with some advantages which aside from allowing you to directly receive international remittance, you can as well save your money in a foreign currency that is less fluctuating and even earn returns when it out grows the value of the nairas.