Monday, 16 January 2012


Went to the bank to sign the contact for the loan to pay for the house the other. As usual, this wasn't just a simple process of signing one piece of paper, but there were over a dozen, including insurance forms and proxies. I wrote my address so many times that I was beginning to go into a calligraphic trance. I stamped my inkan 37 times. And have since had to go back twice to stamp more papers. This included one re-doing where my stamp only left a partial impression, ten stamps where the wrong numbers had been put in and we had to change them, and a couple of wari-in on the fold between two stapled sheets of paper to show that they were part of the same contract.

Part of the complication was that we'd changed from the original plan of getting the loan for the land and the loan for the house from the bank. The loan for the house is now a Flat 35, which is a government-run scheme entailing low, fixed rates for higher spec buldings. The original bank loan was 1.77%, fixed for five years. By UK standards this is already pretty good, but the Flat 35 is 1.31% for the first ten years, then up to 2.01% for the next ten, and 2.31% for the last fifteen.