Australia – Big Brother banks watching our lives – You Won’t Get a Loan If You Don’t Behave

By Nick Gardner From: The Sunday Telegraph April 25, 2010 12:00AM

MAKING big cash withdrawals, having a flutter at the TAB or getting pregnant could make you uncreditworthy under tough new lending laws.

The rules, to take effect on July 1, will allow banks and brokers to analyse all spending habits of borrowers, not just a person’s income and fixed outgoings.

The aim is to uncover any potential financial strains such as a growing family, hidden debts or even gambling and drugs problems.

“Qualifying for a mortgage is not just a matter of assessing what debts you have anymore,” Dean Rushton, CEO of broker Loan Market Group, said.

“If bank statements show there’s a lot of money being spent at the casino or TAB, then that’s obviously going to ring alarm bells.

“Giving credit to somebody after having seen they have a gambling habit could be a difficult position to defend under the new laws.”

Aussie Home Loans CEO Stephen Porges said the increased level of prying into consumer spending was “terrible”.

Mr Porges said: “If a broker meets a couple and the woman looks large, it is now down to the broker to ask: ‘Are you pregnant, or are you just fat?’

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