"What is your inside leg measurement sir?
Okay, maybe it wasn't quite that detailed but the grilling I received at Natwest today came close to it!
I'm about to enter into the big scary world of home ownership and am now at the stage of giving the nice people at the solicitors the large (or large in my eyes anyway, I've never HAD that much money, let alone spent it) sum of £3,000 as a bankers draft for my deposit.
Understandably the lady behind the desk asked for my drivers license for ID, okay, good. Then "do you have your NI number?", errr… No. Funnily enough I don't carry it around with me, nor am I blessed with a photographic memory. Bugger.
So then she asked what standing orders or direct debits I have open on my account… I don't know! The whole point of standing orders is that I don't have to think about them! The wonderful people at T-Mobile just take whatever money I owe them and I don't worry about it too much! I said this to the woman and she looked at me as if to say "You stupid person". I don't know what bloody standing orders I have going! Upon getting back to work I checked and the only standing order is for T-Mobile, why did she look at me like that then!? I told her T-Mobile and said I didn't know of any others!! Which was true!
So she toddled off to go phone through for authorisation, 10 minutes later (where I sat sweating thinking a SWAT team was gonna come and get me for fraud) and after repeated glares from the growing queue as I'd just halfed the number of people working there at what is probably the busiest time (lunch time) she came back carrying the sacred document aka a 3 grand bankers draft.
Thinking I was on the home straight she tapped at her computer and asked me "What were the last few transactions on your account?" what!?!? I don't know when I last used my card! Maybe it was at ASDA yesterday on fuel? "Nope, not showing on here" Bugger (though secretly hoping ASDA had just neglected to charge me). Eventually I managed to persuade the woman that I was in fact me and she gave me my cheque.
Now thinking about it I should be:
- Pleased that they take security so seriously and that not just anyone called Anthony Williams could walk in and withdraw £3,000 that usually isn't there
- not in the least bit surprised at this turn of events considering my account branch is in Ashton-Under-Lyne near Manchester, I was withdrawing at Balsall Common near Solihull and the last few transactions on my account were in France and in Chester.
So I can't really complain, and I'm not. I just found the whole process rather amusing in a "oh please don't reject my banker draft because then I won't get the house I need to move in to next week" kinda way.
All in all quite an eventful day and one step closer to owning my own house :-D