Tuesday, January 06, 2009

For my ex-pat friends

This is for all of my friends and colleagues who still reside overseas. The rest of you are welcome to read along for a laugh....

This past week, I have been trying to do a bit of business in the US. Business that I haven't done for more than 12 years or so. I tried to buy a car.

I was delighted when we were at the finance guy's office and he ran a credit report on us and we found out that our credit is excellent. Our credit report numbers are WAY above the national average. That is good.

Then the floor dropped out from under us.

He said that despite having this great credit score, we don't have any credit HISTORY. He said that the only thing on our report was one credit card for each of us. (Sally and me) I told him that I had bought (financed) numerous cars and a house. He said that it was long enough ago that it had "rotated" off our report and as far as they were concerned, we were starting over, just with a really good credit score.

He said that GMAC was actually willing to loan us the money for the car, but we would need a 20% deposit and would be charged FIFTEEN PERCENT interest! He said that he wasn't even going to offer us that "deal" and suggested another route.

All of this to say, "If you currently live overseas and have done so for a while, when you go to buy something in the US, either expect to buy with cash, or be prepared to have an exorbitantly high interest rate because all of your credit history will be just that; HISTORY!
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