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No, You Can't Pay The Interest In Catnip
August 29, 2014 8:03 AM   Subscribe

To entice new homeowners, Russia's biggest bank is running a special promotion which adds unusual perk with its mortgage - a cat.

The promotion is linked to a Russian superstition that it's good luck for a cat to check a home out first before the owners move in. But since not everyone has pets, Sberbank has assembled a team of ten loaner cats, owned by bank employees and volunteers, who be delivered to customers' new homes the day they move in to scope it out for a couple hours. There's even a hairless Sphinx on the roster for allergy-prone homeowners.

However, Business Week reports that supplies are limited - only thirty people will get a cat with their mortgage; fifteen in Moscow, and fifteen elsewhere in the country. The eight pages of fine print also state that they have to give the cats back after two hours.

This is something of a trend for Sberbank - an earlier promotion invited customers to take a "What Kind Of Cat Are You" Personality quiz which ended with a pitch for the purrrrfect home for your newly-discovered feline personality.
posted by EmpressCallipygos (24 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Finally, a way to match cats with rich, kind, deserving owners!
posted by oceanjesse at 8:07 AM on August 29


For those who were curious like I was: the phrase "сервис доставки котов на новоселье" appears to translate roughly as "Cat housewarming delivery service."
posted by Johnny Assay at 8:09 AM on August 29 [4 favorites]


I did not know abut the folk belief about cats approving new homes. The moment at about 0:45 where the cat gingerly steps across the threshold and there are cheers and hugs all around (and one of the Slavic Mario Brothers does a visible Fist Clench of Triumph) would make it clear even if I had not read the FPP.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:11 AM on August 29 [9 favorites]


My cat would so be into this. I have to stop him from running into the neighbour's house all the time.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 8:13 AM on August 29 [2 favorites]


What ya do if the cat rejects the house? Like straight up " nope, this place has gateways to hell dimensions and other worlds and like ten troubled ghosts, I'm out of here."
posted by The Whelk at 8:14 AM on August 29 [8 favorites]


Finally, a way to [temporarily] match cats with rich, kind, deserving [home] owners!
posted by Kirth Gerson at 8:15 AM on August 29


What ya do if the cat rejects the house?

That's covered in the Purchase and Sales agreement. Usually, exorcisms are the buyer's responsibility.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 8:17 AM on August 29 [2 favorites]


Purchase and Sales agreement

Purr, Hiss, and Smell Agreement
posted by Sticherbeast at 8:23 AM on August 29 [5 favorites]


This is reminding me of my own late little boy - whenever I brought him into a new place, he would immediately leave the carrier and begin very diligently investigating every last nook and cranny of the place with the thoroughness of a CSI unit, finishing with a shake and a stroll into the most comfortable room where he'd flop down and look at me like "a'ight, it checks out. Feed me."
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:23 AM on August 29 [5 favorites]


Putin: "There is no cat promotion. We are not giving cats to homeowners" [Hands cat to homeowner]
posted by schmod at 8:27 AM on August 29 [8 favorites]


Oh my god, I love the little girl dragging the cat into the house and then throwing the leg flailing creature onto the floor.
posted by maryr at 8:29 AM on August 29 [2 favorites]


What do you do after two hours when the cat has located a secure hideaway and is nowhere to be seen?
posted by maryr at 8:30 AM on August 29 [8 favorites]


Not sure about the cat add-on for the mortgage, but I would be doing a ton of more in-person banking at my local branch office of Big-Ass Wall Street Bank if there were kitties hanging out. (Actually this goes for nearly every brick and mortar establishment I frequent.)
posted by longdaysjourney at 8:38 AM on August 29 [3 favorites]


This is all well and good 'til they put grumpy cat in charge of loan approvals
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 9:07 AM on August 29 [3 favorites]


"Cat housewarming delivery service."

This is what I want next time I move.
posted by shelleycat at 9:18 AM on August 29 [1 favorite]


So to enter into a deal with bankers you get a home inspection from a sociopathic animal?
posted by srboisvert at 9:41 AM on August 29 [2 favorites]


I see that even in this time, the Kremlin's soft power push on MeFi is succeeding.
posted by Apocryphon at 9:44 AM on August 29 [2 favorites]


So to enter into a deal with bankers you get a home inspection from a sociopathic animal?

Yes. In other words, nothing has changed.
posted by me & my monkey at 10:01 AM on August 29 [5 favorites]


Does "cat" mean British schoolgirl in this context too?.
posted by fairmettle at 10:02 AM on August 29 [1 favorite]


Luigi has fallen on hard times.

And shaved off the mustache.

And gotten cloned several times.

posted by escape from the potato planet at 3:17 PM on August 29 [1 favorite]


Banker at 0:48 suspiciously looks like Jamie Lannister from Game of Thrones, ensuring that a Russian homeowner will always pay his debts?
posted by seawallrunner at 6:46 PM on August 29


Makes perfect sense to have a cat check the place out first, for vermin and stuff. I moved into an apartment that had been sitting empty, and my blind cat caught a rat the first night.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 7:40 PM on August 29


I was most impressed by the Kitler wannabee at 0:57.
posted by Berend at 3:19 AM on August 30


I used to live in basically Little Russia in my city, and now the local realtor advertising a free kitten with home purchase makes a lot more sense.
posted by blnkfrnk at 12:07 PM on August 30


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