As part of ‘The Debt Panel’, The National published an article about a Dubai telesales worker who earns a monthly salary of AED 7,000, and has accumulated debts of over AED 130,000.
I have always been a good banking customer, with a clear payment history on my debts. But recently my father became really sick and I have been unable to make my payments on time. I initially borrowed the money because I tried to help someone, but unfortunately that person lost their job and had to leave the country. Now I have debts in the UAE of more than Dh130,000. I work in telesales earning Dh7,000 a month and I am the only source of income for my family in Pakistan. My debts comprise one personal loan and four credit cards with four different banks.
Credit card: 1: Dh19,000
Credit card 2: Dh22,000
Credit card 3: Dh10,000
Credit card 4: Dh54,000
In December I approached my primary bank (with which I have the loan and one credit card) to see if they could top up my loan so that I could close my credit card debts, but because of my credit report they were unable to process my application. Now the other three banks I have credit cards with are chasing me and I am unable to pay them.
I have missed two months’ payment on the card I owe Dh54,000 on and that bank is now filing a case against me. They did offer me an instalment plan, but it was not manageable as out of my Dh7000 salary, I am already paying Dh2,650 for my personal loan, then Dh1,000 on my credit cards, Dh1,350 for my accommodation and Dh1,000 on my other expenses. For the past couple of months I haven’t even had any money to send back home. I want to find a solution to clear my debts and am willing to pay instalments that are manageable for my salary. My company is in a process of renewing my employment visa, but they will be unable to do that if the bank files a case against me. What should I do as I need to support my parents and don’t want to leave them alone without my help?
Here is what Ambareen Musa, one of the debt panelists and Founder & CEO of Souqalmal.com, had to say.
You’re in a tough situation with elderly parents back home who rely on you financially, and a mounting debt problem to worry about here in the UAE. So to make sure you’re able to honour your long-term financial commitments, you’ll have to start right at the root of the problem.
You’re stuck in a debt trap, since your monthly income (Dh7,000) is less than the equated monthly instalments on your total debt of Dh130,000, and the root of the problem is your credit card debt. You will have to find a way to swap this high-cost debt for low-cost debt to ease the pressure on your finances.
For full article go to The National.