Why is credit rating important?

We are in need of another car again.  And we don’t have the money to get another one yet.  We’ve considered getting a personal or car loan but the interest rates are too high.  Plus, our bank is not likely to give us a loan because we do not have a very long and active history with them.  In addition, we do not own our own home.  In short, we do not have sufficient credit history.

This lack of good credit rating means that the best we can hope for is financing with high interests.  I saw an ad in a paper recently claiming how easy it was to get a loan through some group – “Don’t you wish all loans were this easy to understand?” it stated.  It showed how much you would pay back if you borrowed a certain amount.  Since the amount they published was relatively small, the figure did not seem overwhelming.  But in big lettering, it said the interest rate was 78.6%!  Who would be crazy enough to go for that?  Even in our dire straits, we would not consider loan sharks, even those generous enough to take only 78.6% and not 1000%.

It has come home to us that having a good credit rating is essential for getting on in this world.  But, life itself has been so difficult that it is hard to have good credit rating.  We do not have enough money to buy a house, so it will be a long time before we reach that stage.  We don’t carry credit cards because credit card debt got us into a lot of trouble in the past.  Yet, you can’t build a credit history without a credit card.

Without good credit rating, banks don’t want to help you.  If banks don’t help you, you can never get the good credit rating.  It’s a vicious cycle.

The only advantage to not having a good credit rating is that people are less likely to want your identity.

Politicians need to lead by example

Is the MP expense row over, do you think?  I’ve been following it with great interest.  It’s unbelievable to see how many of us are struggling to cope with the recession, being unemployed, trying to just get by, finding ways to save money here and there, while those who are much better off are abusing public money.  It’s no surprise that the public is outraged.  And for some to say that the media has blown it out of proportion is completely unfeeling.

Of course, the well-off are probably not going to care much, but you have over two million unemployed people who are frustrated and they will be extremely upset by the paper’s revelations.  I’m glad the politicians finally realise how shallow they are.  Some of them need to go back to their constituents and learn to live like them.

Mr. Cameron suggests that we enter a new era of thrift.  So, can they lead by example and show us how to save?  The car scrappage scheme won’t work for many of us.  We have our beat up rust-buckets that we can barely maintain with the rising fuel costs.  But it’s better that we pay the fuel only, rather than take on a new car loan when we don’t have a job to pay for the loan.  Please, how else can you help us poor constituents?  You’ll need to be very creative to get our votes in the next election.