Graduate gets nearly £3,000 of store credit. One problem is that they earn less than £1,000...

18 November 2009

Store cards are the devil's work. They're designed to make you think you can go on a spending spree and not really worry about whether you've got any money in which to do it with. Then, you get the bill and find that the crappy £10 jumper you bought is actually going to cost you triple. You might as well shoplift. The interest rates charged on store credit range from 18.9% to 28.9%.

Anyway, one student scumbag graduate who was on a meagre wage found that they could get a stupid amount of credit from stores. As the headline states, they were offered nearly £3,000 of store card credit in two days despite earning less than £1,000 so far this year.

This kid, who has £19,000 of student debt dangling over their head, was offered six store cards on the high street with credit totalling £2,750, according to an investigation by Which? Money.

The graduate posed as a customer in 20 shops where he bought items costing between £50 and £100 and asked if he could get discounts if he took out a store card. The subsequent 12 credit checks carried out over two days bafflingly gave the green light and they got credit by day two. It seems that the stores are a bit keen to get you to sign the forms without allowing you to read the T&Cs.

Thanks to the student graduate's grim financial position, in one case, it would have taken them 20 years to clear the debt if they made the minimum repayment each month. BHS initially offered the student a store card with £100 credit... then.. well, they sent a nice card along with  a £1,500 credit limit. Not only that, but the idiots put the graduate's street name on the card, instead of his actual name.

Which? are asking retailers to work more closely with credit reference agencies to make sure they are aware of customers' circumstances before they lend to them as well as calling for sales staff to be given better training in such matters. Or, alternatively, a general call for them to do their job properly.

The chances of that happening without legislation are slim-to-fuck all I expect.

[Guardian]

TOPICS:   High Street News   Investments

14 comments

  • sh33n
    Here's a novel idea, if you can't afford to repay the debt, don't ask for / accept the credit. I hate this nanny state idea that everyone should be penalised because a few half wits don't realise that credit cards are not free money.
  • Klingelton
    @ sh33n: problem is, it's a few more than a few half wits that we're talking of here. It mainly stems from free availability of credit and a producer led market/throw away lifestyle that's causing people to beleive if they don't have the latest tat, they're a nobody. I blame IKEA personally for single handedly paving the way for our throw away society.
  • Gunn
    Store cards are dangerous. APR normally over 30%!
  • Klingelton
    I've never been sucker punched by a store card, but i can see why people are - With fantastic introductory offers of 10% off. problem is, it's another tax on the people that can ill-afford to pay these.
  • Anonymous
    TBH this doesn't surprise me - I have a credit card with a £2000 limit that I obtained when working less than 16 hours a week for next to nothing.
  • The B.
    "graduate’s street name on the card" I had to re-read that, I thought you mean some sort of hip street name like "Skiddy P" or some such nonsense, God I feel old now.
  • Esarty
    @ The Real Bob I thought exactly the same - was only your post that made me think twice....
  • Larry L.
    Oh! THAT kind of street name!
  • Mark M.
    Same here...
  • Junkyard
    Not "MC Shizzle" then?
  • johnny
    lol never considered that sort of street name, will have to contact my credit card and see what they can do for me (prolly cost me money for the pleasure ofc)
  • Brian
    Hi, Brian here. All you moth@ [email protected] & knob heads need to get out this joint if you gonna talk shit about the hood, or yu be in the morgue
  • buyerbeware
    I was always sceptical about store cards until I read in the recent PWC report that the average debt on store cards is £150.00. Yes, only £150.00. This story could be completely meaningless if one person has gone out and done something atypical to make a story for the media. Which? gave evidence to the Treasury Select Committee about a year ago. They were asked by an MP on the committee about store cards. She asked how they works and were staff paid incentives to sell cards. The Which? rep replied that he did not know. He said Which? did not recommend store cards so had not looked in detail at how they worked. I thought that was incredible, that Which? did not know the answer to that question.
  • Kevin
    The street name thing is stupid but everything else is down to the personal responsibility of the applicant. Doesn't matter if it's a stupid student or some stupid council estate chav. Noone is making them buy things, it is their choice and they should take the consequences. The ONLY thing the creditors care about is can they pay the minimal charge, which won't be much and probably anyone could. That's it. It's not like they can't afford £5 a month. That's what the credit check is for.

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