Eastbourne Poundland rents floor space to '˜controversial' credit provider

An Eastbourne Poundland is one of a handful of stores in the country which has rented out floor space to a controversial credit provider.

Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 1:42 pm
Updated Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 2:45 pm

Rent-to-own company BrightHouse now has a drop-in shop in The Poundland in Kingfisher Drive, Langney.

The credit provider sells people household items with rental repayment plans which could charge up to 69.9 per cent interest.

But this move has come under criticism from not-for-profit organisation Fair For You, a ‘flexible’ credit provider which says it is an alternative to other ‘high cost’ weekly payment stores.

Angela Clements, of Fair for You, said, “I am deeply concerned by this development in bringing BrightHouse into Poundland stores.

“Its salespeople will sell products that appear affordable when expressed on a weekly amount, but by entering into up to three-year agreements will see a very high premium paid by lower income households for essential items.

“I find it worrying consumers who are shopping on a budget in a store that promotes itself as helping their money go further at this time of year, will instead see themselves exposed to high cost credit provision.”

Responding to these concerns, a spokesperson for BrightHouse said, “BrightHouse offers those on low incomes who are excluded from mainstream credit an affordable way to get everyday household goods.

“We have been testing how we might serve our customers within Poundland stores for some time now.

“BrightHouse was authorised by the FCA earlier this year following an detailed examination of the way we serve our customers.”

While a spokesperson for Poundland added, “In four out of our 850+ shops, BrightHouse rent unused floor space.

“The stores are staffed, operated and run by Brighthouse with no involvement from Poundland.

“There are no current plans to add more.”