Thursday, May 18, 2006

C'mon, give me some credit...

Okay, so the title doesn't necessarily reflect what the post is about ;). Since we've been here, El 3atal and I have been exceptionally frustrated. For those of you who may not be familiar with the system in America, throughout your adult life, you establish and maintain a credit record in the US. When they say, this is going in your permanent record, it really is! Here's how it works. At some point (typically in college) you get a credit card. You make purchases and pay them off. The credit card company reports to a Credit Bureau. The credit bureau collects information from all of the various people who may be lending you money. They gather it together and create a file for you. It tells what your available credit is, how much money you have currently borrowed, how timely you have been in making your payments, etc. When you want to take a loan (for a car or house) or obtain another source of credit, the company pulls your file, as it were, and determines how good a credit risk you are. So, any negative information you have in your file is weighed against the positive information and you are assigned an overall score.

So, now you know, if you go to the States, be careful with your credit, it's pretty important. And, you can imagine how frustrating it is to move to a place that has no such system established. As an example, El 3atal and I could walk into a car dealership in the US today and walk out with a car. Today. The car dealership would give us a very low rate since we have been very careful about maintaining a good credit rating. We could also walk in today and probably walk out with a new house. So, it is doubly ironic to us that we moved and the international bank (with a presence in the US) that we are banking with declined our application for a (GET THIS) credit card with a $500 limit. How astonishingly silly this seems to me. If you are an international bank and know that your customer is coming from the US, check their credit. Simple, quick, and you really have an idea what type of risk they are. Why, you may wonder, won't they give us credit. Because El 3atal hasn't been in his job long enough to be "confirmed." I don't even know what that means. Based on the contract, his employment is at-will, so that once he is confirmed after 3 months, they can decide at 3 months 1 day that he isn't a fit. So, how did that help the bank? So, I fail to see how the confirmation really help the bank. But, that's the system here. And so, I call for a credit bureau in Jordan. Because, really, I mean, c'mon give me some credit!



At 5:07 AM , Blogger moi said...

I really wonder how long it will take Arab countries to realize the advantages of things such as the credit bureaus, or more importantly an efficient postal system. The latter would require "street addresses" (!) which would be highly useful so that we can actually know where we're going instead giving directions like "turn right at the mini-market, left at the brick house"!
I think I would share many of the frustrations that you currently are experiencing if my family decided to move to Jordan...ahhh. Wishing you patience and sanity :)

At 2:05 AM , Blogger MommaBean said...

This is indeed true. But, in jordan, most houses now have street numbers and most streets seem to have name markers. The biggest issue is that they put the sign on the garden walls instead of above the street so you can see it BEFORE you turn in.


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