Friday, September 14, 2007

Check Your Postcode

Have you ever wondered why you spend so long hanging on the telephone when you try and speak to companies and banks with big call centres?

The answer, apparently, is that they now screen incoming calls by postcode, so if you happen to live in Cliftonville West or Central Margate, your chances of being spoken to by a financial advisor at your bank or well, anyone, are rather less than if you had a Chelsea postcode.

I had a look at my own postcode details at http://www.checkmyfile.com/ - it's free - and this is what it says about me and my neighbours. No mention of any aircraft!

"Family Composition: Mature and retired single. Couples whose children have left home, and some elderly peopleSocial

Social Grade: C1-C2-D. Slightly higher proportion of social classification C1 than average.

Higher than average levels of Christians.

Average Age: Typically over 45 to 84.

Qualifications: Very few graduates, however most educated to GCSE standard. Slightly higher proportion of people with 5 or more GCSEs than average. "

There's more of course but when it comes to house prices and loans, the postcode is now the first hurdle to overcome and my last address gave a credit score of 842 out of 1000, whereas my present address only gives me a credit score of 806; the average being 750.

The sweeping nature of the classification should worry us all as it will also determine, for example, whether a bank will even bother to operate a branch in an area with a poor postcode score. However, the evidence that some organisations won't even bother to answer the phone to people who live in the wrong area, is deeply worrying.

I have saved www.checkmyfile.com as a link in the sidebar.

4 comments:

Tony Beachcomber said...

As worrying it may seem, these people still need the business to make money and some companies do go to extraordinary lengths to attract business. Take for instance the recent upset on the money markets which was caused by American bad habits which we seem to import into our country, this system is just another one.
I think gang culture, guns, drugs, anti social behaviour is very much another American bad habit imported through our television screens. There doesn't seem to be anything nice coming from america these days.
It looks like holidays in Cuba from now on.

Anonymous said...

I scored 898. With exactly the same details but with the postcode changed from my Ramsgate address to one of my London addresses it bumped me up to 918.

One tip to maintain your credit rating is to always have a small something on the go on a credit card and then pay the minimum by monthly DD. Credit rating agencies then know you're good for the dosh.

Michael Child said...

Here in King St Ramsgate we only score 652 however many of us are “educated to educated to A-level standard” which as they say only goes to show.

Anonymous said...

Well here in Westbrook we scored 793, however I obviously have the totally wrong opinion of my neighbours - apparently we have higher than average levels of emplyment and are prosperous.
But in the real world its social housing and most of us are unemployed or unemployable for one reason or another.
Or so I thought!