Buy On The Never Never

I remember my parents talking about buying items such as a fridge or a washing machine on the never never. We call that something else now. Monthly payments perhaps? Interesting it was called the never never back then in the 1950’s. Was it that re-payments lasted so long it never seemed they would end? Now there are monthly payment plans (on the never never): a mortgage, a cell phone contract, a bank loan, paying off credit card debt etc.

Being in debt, of any kind, is a huge stress factor. One of the major life stressors as I understand it. But imagine if one isn’t even credit worthy? Today I found out that I wasn’t. What a shock. Apparently one has to have been in debt and proved oneself able to pay it off to be able to be credit worthy. I couldn’t get my head around it this afternoon. Had I done something wrong? Was there something wrong or irresponsible in the way I’d been handling money? Well of course not but it took me some time to realize what the problem was and what the remedy is.

Stressful to be in debt and stressful not to be able to be in debt! Odd world.

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6 thoughts on “Buy On The Never Never”

  1. A friend decided he didn’t want the credit limit as high as it was on his card – every so often they write to say your limit has gone up, presumably to persuade you to go more heavily into debt (I usually have a brief fantasy about fleeing the country on the extra cash). His reasoning was that if the card was stolen someone could take a few thousand pounds on it.It was apparently very difficult to get the credit card company to reduce the amount of excess offered. EXCESS – now, there’s another word!

  2. Oh, don’t get me started. I, having paid off my mortgage and other than that having never had any debt, have an excellent credit rating apparently. Before the financial crash I was inundated with credit card firms wanting to lend me money. The whole financial system is set up on generating desire. Call me an old fashioned socialist (the very word socialist now seems to be regarded as a shibboleth) but all this is what has got us in this mess. We have gone from the old Hire Purchase (HP) system which did help my family when I was a child to get things we needed to a credit fuelled unsustainable economy based upon consumerism. It’s not good. Getting a credit rating for phone contracts or household utilities is one thing, having a system that encourages debt is an other.

  3. My parents too, bought major items on the ‘never never’, weekly payments in the shop, no ‘on-line’ of course. I think ‘on tick’ was different – more short term credit in a local shop where you were known.

    That you are not ‘credit worthy’ does not surprise me: you should consider yourself to be in a select and honorable group. It’s like not having a television (and how TV Licensing pursues you for that!). I’m afraid it’s shifting values (I make no judgement). Don’t worry about it.

    For an interesting read on what Google knows about you see this months London Review of Books:

    in gassho

  4. Yes, thanks for your vote of support. I am not going to go out of my way to be worthy in the credit department – I do realize that I’m in a select few and don’t need to worry about it. It was just a shock to be told this in a shop and a disappointment that I could not do what I wanted/needed to do. Going without, as our parents did, is not such a bad thing. Considering how very much we have in the non essential departments.

  5. I got you started! I do understand the system that has got us into the financial mess we are in now. I forgot about HP.

  6. Paradoxically, having no debt may lead to a poor credit rating. Nothing is known about you. I’ve never asked for my status, as I believe even enquiring ticks some negative boxes. Debt per se is not evil, economies would not function without it. Rather it is the packaging and re-packaging of debt and creation of financial ‘instruments’ like CDO’s (collateralised debt obligations), coupled to a bonus-driven culture, that has got out of control. The markets at times seem more powerful than sovereign states. It beggars belief.

    in gassho

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