Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Shoppers take cautious line


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SOME of the island’s leading furniture and appliance retailers and credit unions believe more Barbadians are shying away from acquiring personal loans to buy items cash.
Steve Bradshaw, manager of Caribbean Furnishing House Inc., told BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY it was not only the recession pushing people away from applying for loans.
“We have been trying to do everything that would certainly help the customers to better make a purchase . . . I think the problem with the financial institution is convenience.
“People have to come get a quotation, go to the bank and make an appointment, then they have to wait to hear that the loan is approved. It is not friendly enough to accommodate them,” Bradshaw argued.
Moreover, the store manager believed people were simply being more cautious in their spending.
“There is a small percentage of the society that has disposable income after their [regular] spending so they can afford to buy items cash. Then there are some individuals who may save or take a hire purchase and clear it in three months to get it at the cash price,” he said.
Courts managing director Trisha Tannis shared a similar view.
“I am sensing in the market that financial institutions would not have been conveniently accessible in 2010 as perhaps before,” Tannis said.
“Hire purchase did very well for us last year and that is typical of what you would expect in a recession because people want to make their purchases but they find themselves with less cash,” she too noted.
Meanwhile Clyde Sobers, general manager of the Barbados Workers’ Union Co-operative Credit Union, could not provide figures but said there were certainly fewer people seeking loans to buy furniture and appliances.
“People are being much more cautious with their cash resources.”


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