Kredit: Credit on the Dole

By: Mark Lauterwein


For those caught in the snare of Germany's capitalist system that have been cast aside like so many worn out shoes, it is not easy to get credit. Some amongst the 7,500 BMW staff made redundant in Munich this week (despite the car makers' record profits) are bound to discover the truth of this shortly.

This is because such people are no longer in a position to demonstrate a regular income (apart from their meagre unemployment benefits). Of course, the banks are worried that if they lend money to these people, they will never see it again. And if an offer of credit is forthcoming the interest rate is likely to be set so high so as to make any such loan a very risky business indeed.

Happily it is no longer out of the question for an unemployed person to successfully apply for credit. There are some specialist companies offering Kredit to the unemployed. Some of these are burdened by relatively low interest rates and so are possible to pay back at a realistic monthly rate for those receiving state benefits as a sole source of income. A prerequisite for the more reputable of these remains a clean bill of health from the German Kredit check agency, Schufa.

But the borrower should really ask himself if it is really advisable to lend money without the security of a living wage. Afterall, there is every likelihood that regular repayments could impact negatively on the hapless borrower's fiscal situation. And if he were to fail to make a repayment he would run the risk of blemishing his credit record with severe repercussions for the future. It is always worth examining the seriousness and viability of lenders offering Kredit or Ratenkredit (installment credit) specifically for the unemployed. There are plenty of unscrupulous sharks out there who would look to profit from the misfortune of others. In other words: check the small print and avoid taking out credit if possible until the financial outlook seems brighter.

28.2.2008

Credit Matters
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