Finally, we have found the house of our dreams and the time has now come to find financing. But, how do we know that the bank is going to grant us the mortgage? Entities that offer loans and credits consider a series of aspects that help them to decide if it is safe to lend us money and what is the maximum amount we can choose. Our income, guarantees and, significantly, the debts we already have acquired come into play in this decision. This last piece of information is what is included in the CIRBE.
The Risk Information Center of the Banco de España (known as CIRBE, its acronym in Spanish), is a register in which the vast majority of loans, credits and guarantees that Spain’s banks hold with their customers appear. In other words, it is a database that includes all the outstanding debts that a customer or guarantor holds, provided that they are for an amount of more than €9,000. It is therefore a very important tool with regard to helping the bank to decide whether or not to grant us a loan, based on our solvency.
It is important to point out that the CIRBE is not a list of payment defaulters, since it doesn’t just include debtors that have fallen behind with their repayments but rather all the account holders and guarantors of loans, credits, mortgages and other risks that banks hold with their customers. Nevertheless, in this database it is recorded if there is any significant amount that has gone unpaid.
How does the CIRBE work?
This database is updated monthly. It is the banking institutions themselves that are required to provide all the necessary information in order for the register to be a source of information that is secure, public but for private reference.
This means that anyone has the right to consult the information that the Banco de España has regarding your personal debts, free of charge and by filing a request. Furthermore, when we apply for a loan from our bank, it has the right to consult the data related to our debts within the CIRBE, without the need to have the customer’s explicit consent, but always informing them that it is going to make this enquiry.
However, there are limitations to the details that the bank can obtain from a customer. The CIRBE only provides general information, according to the Banco de España, of a person or company’s risks. This means that the bank will not handle a detailed list of each and every one of our debts, but rather an overview of them.
In fact, it is one of the first actions that a bank performs when we request, for example, a mortgage to be granted. Because besides the stability of our employment, of our ability to make repayments and of the guarantees we present, the risk we entail as customers is largely determined by the debts we already have contracted. This is why the CIRBE is so important for the granting of any loan, since it can work both in our favor and against us.