The development of COVID-19 (aka Coronavirus) as a global pandemic has brought with it a wave of social panic, employment disruption and financial market volatility. While some people are going overboard on toilet paper purchases, others are preparing for the possibility of self-isolation, and the myriad financial complications that could accompany this.
Australian Banking Association (ABA) chief Anna Bligh said banks are ready to provide financial support to customers who are suffering from the virus.
“Banks stand ready to support customers and if anyone is in need of assistance, they shouldn’t wait but come forward as soon as possible,” she said.
“In particular any business financially impacted by the effects of COVID-19 should contact their bank to be assessed on a case by case basis to access the assistance on offer.”
Find out what help is on offer from your bank, maybe a payment holiday.
Unfortunately, people in certain industries aren’t able to take their work home with them. Many casual workers also don’t have leave entitlements, and other workers may have to take unpaid sick leave. Customers who may be suffering from coronavirus are urged to get in contact with their bank’s hardship team to discuss options.
For example Suncorp has introduced a relief assistance package in recognition of the impact the virus is having on individuals, communities and businesses. Effective immediately, the package includes:
- an opportunity to defer scheduled loan repayments (including interest only) on a case-by-case basis
- rearranging existing loans (for example, principal and interest to interest only) with the waiver of establishment fees
- waiving early withdrawal fees for customers wishing to withdraw from term deposits and/or Farm Management Deposits
- working capital assistance, and
- no interest rate increases.
Take advantage of the recent RBA cuts and look at refinancing your home loan
Home loan rates are at an all-time low after the RBA cut rates to 0.5% in March. Many of Australia’s leading banks immediately passed the full rate cut on to their mortgage customers, though some only offered discounted interest rates to new customers. Now might be the perfect time to consider refinancing.
Refinancing your home loan is essentially shopping around for a more favourable interest rate or flexible loan features. It isn’t for everyone though. If you own less than 20% of the property (i.e. you have a loan ratio value over 80%), switching may cost you more than it provides as it’ll require a second round of lenders mortgage insurance. There’s also a range of fees involved in breaking certain loans and hooking up with new options, so read widely and come armed with info from our home loan refinancing comparisons. But don’t stress too much about that as we’re here to help you every step of the way.
If you’re having trouble making your repayments or would like to talk more about refinancing, please give MC Mortgage Solutions a call today.