Flood victims can defer loan repayments for up to 3 months

Home and business owners impacted by the floods in New South Wales and Queensland can apply to their lender for a three-month loan deferral or reduced payment arrangement. Here’s how to apply if you or someone you know has been impacted.

Another year, another disaster.

In 2019 it was the bushfires. In 2020 it was COVID-19 (which, you know, is still hanging around). In 2021 a mice plague. And now to kick-off 2022 we’ve had half the eastern seaboard inundated with floods.

Fortunately, just as they did for the bushfires and COVID-19, lenders are offering up to three months deferral on loan repayments for those customers affected by the flooding disasters in NSW and Queensland.

“Once the worst of the emergencies are over and the clean-ups begin, we want Australians who have been impacted to know their bank is ready with tailored support to assist as they recover,” says Australian Banking Association CEO Anna Bligh.

“Don’t tough it out on your own. Loan deferral or reduced repayment arrangements for home, personal and some business loans are being offered across individual banks.”

What are some of the options available for flood victims?

Depending on your family’s or business’s circumstances, assistance from your lender may include:

– Deferring scheduled loan repayments, on home, personal and some business loans for up to three months.

– Waiving fees and charges, including for early access to term deposits.

– Debt consolidation to help make repayments more manageable.

– Restructuring existing loans free of the usual establishment fees.

– Offering additional finance to help cover cash flow shortages.

– Deferring upcoming credit card payments.

– Emergency credit limit increases.

Government grants and financial support

There’s also a range of federal and state government financial grants your household or business might be eligible for, including:

– Australian government disaster recovery payment: eligible individuals can claim $1000 per adult and $400 per child. If you’re in NSW click here, QLD click here. A further $2000 per adult and $800 per child is available for residents in Richmond Valley, Lismore and Clarence Valley.

– Australian government disaster recovery allowance: a short-term payment of up to 13 weeks for eligible people for loss of income. NSW click here and QLD click here.

– NSW disaster relief grant for individuals: financial assistance to eligible individuals and families whose homes have been damaged by a natural disaster. Click here or phone 13 77 88.

– NSW storm and flood disaster recovery small business grant: eligible small businesses can apply here for a grant of up to $50,000 to help pay for the costs of clean-up and reinstatement.

– QLD emergency hardship assistance grant: grants of up to $180 are available per person and $900 for a family of five or more. Click here or call 1800 173 349.

– QLD essential household contents grant: up to $1,765 for eligible single adults and $5,300 for families to replace/repair (uninsured) household contents. Click here or call 1800 173 349.

– QLD structural assistance grant: grants of up to $10,995 for eligible single adults and $14,685 for families for one-off (uninsured) structural home repairs. Click here or call 1800 173 349.

– QLD essential services safety and reconnection grant: up to $200 for a safety inspection and, if required, up to $4200 to repair/reconnect essential services. Click here or call 1800 173 349.

– QLD extraordinary disaster assistance recovery grants: up to $50,000 grants for small businesses that experienced damage from the flooding event. Click here or call 1800 623 946.

We’re also here for you

Last but not least, it’s also worth noting that there are both refinancing and/or loan restructuring options you can explore in order to reduce your business or home loan repayments each month (without hitting the pause button).

These include:

– asking for a better rate or moving to a lender that can provide one;
– extending the length of your loan; and
– consolidating your debt.

So if your business or household is one of the many doing it tough right now and you need a little breathing space, please don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and give us a call today – we’re here and ready to assist you any way we can.

Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute tax or financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.