Question: I recently enquired about my Credit Rating with the Irish Credit Bureau and was shocked to find that I have a loan account which shows I am in arrears, when I am not. Is the bank I am dealing with liable, when they put up an incorrect credit record for me?
Answer: It is the responsibility of every lender to make sure that the records held with the Irish Credit Bureau are accurate. In your case it would appear that this has not occurred and I would strongly advise that you contact the offending lender and ensure that they rectify it immediately. Whether or not you have a case in relation to defamation, if your credit rating has been accessed by other institutions, is something you should seek legal advice on.
I would also recommend that anybody who has a loan, should access their credit history on the ICB.ie website to ensure that it is up to date and that there are no errors.
Issue: Dramatic fall in An Post Savings Rates.
Comment: Two weeks ago the NTMA announced a dramatic fall in the rates for 3 year and 5 year savings certificates with An Post. The 3 year rate dropped from 7% to 4% and the 5 year rate 15% to 11%.
This makes An Post as unattractive as any of the banks for deposit rates. The bad news is that this is unlikely to be reversed in the next couple of years as the intention is to keep interest rates as low as possible.
Question: As Deposit rates are so low at the present time, what alternatives do I have to maximize the savings I have?
Answer: I would recommend that if you can do without your savings for 3 to 5 years that you should be looking at taking out an investment bond. There are quite a variety of these bonds available, all of which have different features attached to them.
Depending on your attitude to risk you can look at options that have Capital Guarantees or alternatively medium risk type investments.