High interest rates on loans make it impossible to get a mortgage from second-tier banks in Kazakhstan.
For Gulner, an English teacher and resident of West Kazakhstan, this forced her to rent.
How HCSBK helped
When interviewed, Gulner said:
"In 2012, I saw an HCSBK advert on TV. I opened a deposit account in the city of Aksai. I saved as much money as I could, transferred my travel savings, part of my salary and bonuses. I tried to spend as little as possible. I transferred even the smallest amounts, even as small as $1 to my account just like I would top up my phone. Whenever I would pass by HCSBK branch, I would always drop in and top up my savings account in HCSBK.
"I have two beautiful children and I am raising them alone. At first, we were living in a rented apartment. Obtaining an apartment through state supported programs would have taken too long so I decided to save up and buy an apartment. I was able to save up 4 million tenge while apartments were priced at c.5-6 million tenge at the time. I was able to get the remaining amount through a loan in HCSBK.
"Now I live in a village with my parents where I work as a teacher and lease my new apartment to others. While my daughters are young, we decided to stay in the village and once they grow up we will move to the city, to our new home.
I wanted to share the story of my life to convince others that they can and should invest their money in the future. When I started saving up, my salary was only 80 thousand tenge.
Today, Gulnur transfers all of the rent from new apartment to a new account in HCSBK. She wants to buy another apartment for her second daughter.