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Old 09.08.2018, 15:05
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Douche bank advisor?

It's been a while since I last invoked the wisdom of the EF but the last interactions with my bank advisor are worth sharing...

We're negotiating a mortgage and I've been faced with tough questions from this guy, namely:

1) "Do you plan to continue working 100% after you have children?" - while I can understand he's trying to assess my ability to repay the loan, should I be shocked/disgusted by his bluntness?

2) "Oh we see you got a transfer from your father who lives in (insert developing non-EU country here)... can you prove how he saved for / obtained the $$ because country x is defined as a sensitive country and we need proof that this doesn't come from money laundering or drugs (I'm quoting him, not trying to add any color to his statement") - I also have a problem here because said transfer happened months ago, at that point I asked the bank if they needed any documents and they said no, we'll contact you if our legal dept. asks... apparently they only asked now that we're trying to get a credit. And again I find his phrasing inappropriate.

Am I being too sensitive? should I suck it up and come to terms with the fact that this is a mysogynist country? formally complain about this guy? change bank?

The floor is yours...

Last edited by evaluna; 09.08.2018 at 15:06. Reason: missing brackets
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Old 09.08.2018, 15:10
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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It's been a while since I last invoked the wisdom of the EF but the last interactions with my bank advisor are worth sharing...

We're negotiating a mortgage and I've been faced with tough questions from this guy, namely:

1) "Do you plan to continue working 100% after you have children?" - while I can understand he's trying to assess my ability to repay the loan, should I be shocked/disgusted by his bluntness?
It's a blunt question but I think it's necessary. They are, after all, about to lend you a huge sum of money over an extended period and probably need to tick all their boxes to make sure you can pay it back. He's just trying to assess your income.

If you are applying for a mortgage, you'd better strap in because there is a lot more from where that came.

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2) "Oh we see you got a transfer from your father who lives in (insert developing non-EU country here)... can you prove how he saved for / obtained the $$ because country x is defined as a sensitive country and we need proof that this doesn't come from money laundering or drugs (I'm quoting him, not trying to add any color to his statement") - I also have a problem here because said transfer happened months ago, at that point I asked the bank if they needed any documents and they said no, we'll contact you if our legal dept. asks... apparently they only asked now that we're trying to get a credit. And again I find his phrasing inappropriate.

Am I being too sensitive? should I suck it up and come to terms with the fact that this is a mysogynist country? formally complain about this guy? change bank?

The floor is yours...
All banks these days have to go through the KYC, Anti Money Laundering and provenance of funds, especially when it's coming cross border. Some countries require more or less box ticking. Switzerland isn't alone in raising these questions.
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Old 09.08.2018, 15:11
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

As to 2) pretty normal, all part of the KYC / money laundering process, unfortunately......

And as to changing banks: I donīt think you will find a bank in Europe or the US/Canada that does not ask questions like these
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Old 09.08.2018, 15:32
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

With regargds to question 1 :

No need to be shocked and disgusted. While banking might be different in other countries, the question is understandable for assessing risk and repayment.

Also, having been pregnant myself, EVERYONE will ask you if you plan to continue working

Is it an appropriate way to ask ? I don't know. Maybe they can come up with a more tactful way ?

It wouldn't bother me. However, I know exactly you mean . My guess is that they don't ask men ' Will you continue working after you have children ' ? In their defense , though, it usually is women who stay home to care for children . Especially, in Switzerland.

That said, anyone could have a risk of not repaying i.e. accident, job loss, death etc.


p.s. Don't let that stop you from getting a loan ( I've heard it can be hard here) , but also if you feel uncomfortable with certain questions ask why they need to know. Maybe their explanation would make you feel better.
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Old 09.08.2018, 15:41
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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1) "Do you plan to continue working 100% after you have children?" - while I can understand he's trying to assess my ability to repay the loan, should I be shocked/disgusted by his bluntness?

2) "Oh we see you got a transfer from your father who lives in (insert developing non-EU country here)... can you prove how he saved for / obtained the $$ because country x is defined as a sensitive country and we need proof that this doesn't come from money laundering or drugs (I'm quoting him, not trying to add any color to his statement") - I also have a problem here because said transfer happened months ago, at that point I asked the bank if they needed any documents and they said no, we'll contact you if our legal dept. asks... apparently they only asked now that we're trying to get a credit. And again I find his phrasing inappropriate.
1) Answer "yes". Move on.
2) Answer "yes" and provide the proof. Move on.

The bank has the discretion whether to lend to you or not. They are not obliged to lend to anybody. Play along, sign the loan contract, get the money, then shove two fingers (or one if you're Americanized) up at the bank.
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Old 09.08.2018, 15:50
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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1) Answer "yes". Move on.
2) Answer "yes" and provide the proof. Move on.

The bank has the discretion whether to lend to you or not. They are not obliged to lend to anybody. Play along, sign the loan contract, get the money, then shove two fingers (or one if you're Americanized) up at the bank.
Be careful if there are ANY fixed term deals as at renewal the loan will need underwriting again. If income is not there the Bank can recall the loan & any early repayment penalties will be payable.
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Old 09.08.2018, 15:54
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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If you are applying for a mortgage, you'd better strap in because there is a lot more from where that came.
Oh yes!! I may have overreacted, I just found the advisor's phrasing too direct borderline with insensitive and wondered if that's the norm rather than the exception in here - and there longer I live here, the more I think I should take it with a pinch of salt...

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My guess is that they don't ask men ' Will you continue working after you have children ' ? That said, anyone could have a risk of not repaying i.e. accident, job loss, death etc.
THIS. In my head what I hear left and right is that women are considered a 2nd class, unreliable workforce. As LaughingCow says there are other (more severe!) risks that I don't think the bank asks you about. Or has anyone been required to submit a full medical checkup saying that you're fit to work yourself to death for the next 20+ years at no risk of any severe illness??

Quote:
As to 2) pretty normal, all part of the KYC / money laundering process, unfortunately......

And as to changing banks: I donīt think you will find a bank in Europe or the US/Canada that does not ask questions like these
I'm fine with the requirements and happy to provide any evidence required. It just bothers me that they had 6 months to request documents and they only decide to do it NOW when there's a property we want to make an offer on. I'm afraid an offer from another buyer who does not require a full background check will be accepted in the meantime thanks to the incompetence of MY bank. By incompetence I mean that they didn't cross their t's timely.

And finally I do find it schocking that the guy is suggesting the $$ came from illegal activities. Again it's all about the phrasing and I'm disgusted that someone on a customer-facing role can say something like "we need to make sure your father's money doesn't come from money laundering or drugs" rather than "we need to fulfill the requirements according to KYC / money laundering laws / need to prove the provenance of the funds".

(I work in marketing by the way and am rather picky with words).
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Old 09.08.2018, 15:58
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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THIS. In my head what I hear left and right is that women are considered a 2nd class, unreliable workforce.



I'm fine with the requirements and happy to provide any evidence required. It just bothers me that they had 6 months to request documents and they only decide to do it NOW when there's a property we want to make an offer on.

And finally I do find it schocking that the guy is suggesting the $$ came from illegal activities. Again it's all about the phrasing and I'm disgusted that someone on a customer-facing role can say something like "we need to make sure your father's money doesn't come from money laundering or drugs" rather than "we need to fulfill the requirements according to KYC / money laundering laws / need to prove the provenance of the funds".
No, he just wants to know if your income level will be the same after that.

You probably didnīt ask for a mortgage 6 months ago?

And to the remark on where the money came from, he was trying to be honest rather than being pc.
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Old 09.08.2018, 16:05
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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You probably didnīt ask for a mortgage 6 months ago?
Funny you ask... I did ask for a mortgage 6 months ago. We were however outbid and didn't get the place
At that point the credit was approved and the advisor who prepared the offer didn't bat an eyelid about the $$ from abroad. This was someone different from the advisor we're dealing with now.

Perhaps I should be upset at the previous advisor for not having done his homework
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Old 09.08.2018, 16:22
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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Oh yes!! I may have overreacted, I just found the advisor's phrasing too direct borderline with insensitive and wondered if that's the norm rather than the exception in here - and there longer I live here, the more I think I should take it with a pinch of salt...
Were you negotiating in English or German? If it was English, sometimes the translation can sound harsh and direct which is sometimes a bit shocking to not-so-direct language speakers.



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THIS. In my head what I hear left and right is that women are considered a 2nd class, unreliable workforce. As LaughingCow says there are other (more severe!) risks that I don't think the bank asks you about. Or has anyone been required to submit a full medical checkup saying that you're fit to work yourself to death for the next 20+ years at no risk of any severe illness??
We have to be careful to apply the same standards to our own home countries. I can say hand on heart that mortgage applications in the UK also don't ask the husband what his post-baby working plans are but they may ask wifey. I'm pretty sure most countries are the same but happy to concede if someone says, "Yes, my husband was asked if he would be returning to work after the baby". Switzerland, for all its faults, is not the abnormal demon it's made out to be.



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I'm fine with the requirements and happy to provide any evidence required. It just bothers me that they had 6 months to request documents and they only decide to do it NOW when there's a property we want to make an offer on. I'm afraid an offer from another buyer who does not require a full background check will be accepted in the meantime thanks to the incompetence of MY bank. By incompetence I mean that they didn't cross their t's timely.
Banks just have a list of procedures to follow (believe me, I'm tripping over them on a daily basis ). I deal with banks across Europe and in the US and their list of seemingly ridiculous demands make me want to attack my computer with a hammer more often than I care to count.

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And finally I do find it schocking that the guy is suggesting the $$ came from illegal activities. Again it's all about the phrasing and I'm disgusted that someone on a customer-facing role can say something like "we need to make sure your father's money doesn't come from money laundering or drugs" rather than "we need to fulfill the requirements according to KYC / money laundering laws / need to prove the provenance of the funds".
Phrasing I mentioned earlier (dealing with German speakers in English is fraught with mistranslated harshness).
Maybe, once the dust has settled, you could approach that bank and give them a new, sanitised way of asking questions. Perhaps they'll be happy with the feedback and that it might be a good marketing ploy to attract more of the sensitive-English speaking types.

Took me years to get past the feeling that I was constantly being scolded when people were just asking me if I wanted a cup of coffee. I'm so international now...
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Old 09.08.2018, 17:02
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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Am I being too sensitive? should I suck it up and come to terms with the fact that this is a mysogynist country? formally complain about this guy? change bank?

The floor is yours...
You're lucky you're female. No man could post this kind of sexist BS without a serious backlash.
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(I work in marketing by the way and am rather picky with words).
All the more given that claim.
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Old 09.08.2018, 17:36
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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You're lucky you're female. No man could post this kind of sexist BS without a serious backlash.
Gee, thanks. Make a quick google search and you will find that this "sexist BS" is an actual issue facing women my age group. As is also being considered for promotions or changing jobs. For example:

Quote:
In a recent uSwitch survey of 2,002 female applicants aged 25-45, about one in 10 said they felt they had been discriminated against by lenders over their plans to start a family
.

Full article here

Seems like lenders asking if you plan to have a baby, lose your job, get cancer or whatnot is the new normal. Granted they want to avoid another financial crisis but getting pregnant is not an illness and is not the end of a woman's career!
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Old 09.08.2018, 18:22
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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Full article here

Seems like lenders asking if you plan to have a baby, lose your job, get cancer or whatnot is the new normal. Granted they want to avoid another financial crisis but getting pregnant is not an illness and is not the end of a woman's career!
Since you appear to not have noticed: This is not the UK.

So perhaps the questions were merely part of an IQ test. A well warranted one, mind.
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Old 09.08.2018, 18:38
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

No
Yes
No
No
No

HTH
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Old 09.08.2018, 19:00
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

I like blunt questions.

I also think it matters whether you plan to carry on working a 100% after having children. It matters on the calculation what you can afford monthly over a long period of time (in Switzerland people don't pay off mortgage ever). The bank afaik also carries some responsibility on not pushing people into obvious bankruptcy (as we all know, that issue became a public one thanks to the way it was handled in the US). The bank and you will have a long term relationsship, it's not just a quicky like a payday loan for a new telly. Plus we all know people in general - and Brits in particular - will quickly whine "the banker should have know, can I sue him?"

The money-laundring questions ..... well, when they were not controlled so seriously, the world cried out "what gangsters in Switzerland". With US leading the way they forced all kinds of rules and regulations on this country and now the foreigners complain? LOL.

As I said, I like blunt questions. They make life so much easier.
Much better than my banker (I exchanged him now, he was generally a nuisance) who during a meeting kept mumbling, interrupting and what ever "there was a cash withdrawal of 6000 franks" obviously wanting to know what for. ROFLMAO. Not only it was none of his business - 6K? Seriously?

Having said all this: You too need to trust your banker. So do it like me: Change him. Either the person within the bank or the bank all together.

AH! And did you tell him you don't like the way he puts his questions and ask him what he needs to know all this for? Because blunt questions only make life easier when the answers and/or reactions are blunt too. A rant on EF is not blunt. It's public but chances are good, the banker is not on EF.
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Old 09.08.2018, 19:10
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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I'm fine with the requirements and happy to provide any evidence required. It just bothers me that they had 6 months to request documents and they only decide to do it NOW when there's a property we want to make an offer on. I'm afraid an offer from another buyer who does not require a full background check will be accepted in the meantime thanks to the incompetence of MY bank. By incompetence I mean that they didn't cross their t's timely.

And finally I do find it schocking that the guy is suggesting the $$ came from illegal activities. Again it's all about the phrasing and I'm disgusted that someone on a customer-facing role can say something like "we need to make sure your father's money doesn't come from money laundering or drugs" rather than "we need to fulfill the requirements according to KYC / money laundering laws / need to prove the provenance of the funds".

(I work in marketing by the way and am rather picky with words).
Since words are important to you... the word is "shocking".

And... he has a legal duty to make sure that he doesn't get the bank involved with customers laundering money. He wasn't suggesting, he was asking.
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Old 09.08.2018, 19:33
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

If the banker is not careful and does not do his "due dillegence" for the provenance of the funds and it turns out not to be so clean, it is not YOU who goes to JAIL, but the banker.....


Maybe this helps you understand why they want to know the provenence of the funds.


The fact he wants to know a little about your personnel situation is to allow him to decide whether to apply within the bank for the mortgage or not. If you cannot repay, they will reposses and it is you who will lose money.


I should take him a bottle of wine and thank him for being so careful.
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Old 09.08.2018, 22:15
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

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And finally I do find it schocking that the guy is suggesting the $$ came from illegal activities. Again it's all about the phrasing and I'm disgusted that someone on a customer-facing role can say something like "we need to make sure your father's money doesn't come from money laundering or drugs" rather than "we need to fulfill the requirements according to KYC / money laundering laws / need to prove the provenance of the funds".

(I work in marketing by the way and am rather picky with words).
I’m not even sure you are mature enough to obtain a mortgage! You are about to enter into what is probably the biggest financial transition in your life, you are asking a bank to trust you with a large sum of their money and you are behaving as if you are doing them a favor!

When you deal with serious matters you can expect that the people you deal with take their work very seriously, they will ask the unpleasant questions and they will do the follow ups. You have received funds from a high risk country and are about to perform the classic money laundering trick of sinking it in property so you can absolutely expect to be required to account for it - you have raised a new red flag by your request.

If you don’t like it, you have a solution - walk away and see how many other banks will be willing to give you a mortgage on your terms.
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Old 09.08.2018, 22:28
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

OMG! Another douche-titled thread today
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Old 09.08.2018, 23:56
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Re: Douche bank advisor?

Reverse the roles, evaluna.

Would you lend somebody a huge amount of money without doing your due diligence?

If you do, please send me an application.
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