Information for customers affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
This page contains a range of information for customers affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19).
TAKING A PAYMENT HOLIDAY
You can take up to a maximum three months’ payment holiday at a time if you’ve been affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19). If you are considering this course of action, please read the information below – remember that the deferred payments will still need to be paid at a later date and interest will continue to accrue.
|Can I apply for a payment holiday?|
You can take up to a maximum three months’ payment holiday at a time if you’ve been affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) in one of the following scenarios:
A one-month payment holiday may also be granted if you (or your agent) are currently unable to collect rent due to the coronavirus. However, we would expect alternative arrangements to be made for rent collection in the long term.
If the above scenarios do not apply to you, but you consider that a payment holiday is appropriate for you due to the impact of the coronavirus on you, please call us to discuss your individual circumstances. We may still be able to agree to a payment holiday in exceptional circumstances.
What is a payment holiday?
If you have already taken a 1-3 month payment holiday, you can request a further payment holiday of 1-3 months, as long as you apply by 31st October 2020.
How does a payment holiday work?
Where you have a capital repayment mortgage, in most cases we expect that the interest accrued during the payment holiday and the deferred capital repayments, will be paid by spreading them over your remaining term. Where you have an interest-only mortgage, in most cases we would expect that the interest accrued during the payment holiday will be added to the balance you owe at the end of the term. With a part and part mortgage, we would expect these treatments to be applied to the relevant parts of your mortgage.
In all these scenarios, you will be paying interest on an increased balance and as a result, your future monthly payments will increase. The total amount of interest you pay over the term of the mortgage will also increase.
Should you wish to pay another way, or if you think you will have difficulties making the increased monthly payments, we will provide you with the opportunity to discuss this with us before your payment holiday ends.
The Money Advice Service website includes a link to a mortgage holiday payment calculator which gives consumers an indication of the impact of a payment holiday on their monthly payments. The impact will be proportionately less if you are able to afford partial payments during the payment holiday.
Please note: This calculator is not affiliated with Zephyr Homeloans and you will need to input the following details in order to use the calculator. You can find these details on your annual mortgage statement.
If you have multiple parts to your account, (e.g. a part and part mortgage), then you will need to input details of each part into the calculator separately and total the impact on each part. If you have any problems using the calculator, please call us so that we can provide you with an indication of the impact of the payment holiday on your monthly payments.
The calculator should be used for secured mortgages only.
If a payment holiday is arranged, and you usually pay by Direct Debit you do not need to do anything, once the payment holiday is processed, the payment will not be collected. Please do not cancel your Direct Debit, without contacting us to discuss this first, as we won’t be able to take your new monthly payment when the payment holiday ends, which might mean you miss payments when they restart.
If a payment holiday is arranged and you pay by standing order, or if you have a recurring payment set up through online banking, then you will need to contact your bank either to cancel it – to avoid payments being made during the payment holiday – or to reduce the amount of your payment – if you want to make payments where you can afford to do so.
If you have a payment due in the next seven working days then it is unlikely that the payment holiday will be set up before your payment due date, so you should continue to make your next monthly payment. You should only cancel or reduce your standing order or recurring payment at your bank once this payment has been sent. Remember, you will need to reinstate the standing order or recurring payment at the end of the payment holiday, ensuring that it is set for your revised monthly payment amount.
If you apply for a payment holiday online and your next monthly payment is due within seven working days, please call us as soon as possible if you are concerned about your ability to pay.
During a payment holiday, if there is an interest rate change, or if a transaction occurs that results in a recalculation of your monthly payment, we will still send out a letter advising you of the change to your monthly payment. However, if you have a payment holiday arranged, then the payment will not be collected or be payable and you will be advised of your further revised monthly payment towards the end of your payment holiday.
What if I’m already in arrears?
What if I can afford to make some form of payment?
If your account is currently in arrears, any payments received during the payment holiday will be used to reduce the arrears first.
Where can I find help with budgeting and finance?
The StepChange debt charity has also published a reduced income guide to help people with a reduced income to deal with their finances, such as making arrangements with creditors. We recommend you read this and take any action you need to sooner rather than later.
See our ‘Help with Financial Difficulties‘ page for details of other independent not-for-profit organisations, including Citizens Advice and the Money Advice Service, for further guidance on money, debt, housing and employment.
If I take a payment holiday what will happen to my credit file?
If your account is currently up to date, then your credit file will continue to reflect this status.
If you are currently in arrears, then your credit file will continue to reflect the same arrears status during the payment holiday as immediately prior to it. We will continue to send monthly arrears letters, as your previously missed payments are still outstanding.
When will the payment holiday take effect?
If your next monthly payment is due in the next seven working days, your payment holiday will start from the following month.
If you are unable to meet your full payment in the meantime, then this payment will fall into arrears. In order to minimise the amount of arrears outstanding we would advise you to make a payment for as much as you can afford. Please contact us by telephone as soon as possible if you are concerned about your ability to pay.
APPLYING FOR A PAYMENT HOLIDAY
When you have read all of the information above, please call us to request a payment holiday.
Please note: We are currently dealing with a higher number of calls from customers than normal. So that we can support those in the most vulnerable situations please only call if your enquiry is urgent. You can use our Self-Service facility online to view details of and to manage your account. We are doing our best to help customers as quickly as possible and we appreciate your cooperation.
For your own benefit and protection please read all the information above carefully before you apply for a Payment Holiday.
WHAT HAPPENS AT THE END OF MY PAYMENT HOLIDAY?
After your payment holiday ends, your monthly payments will become due again. In the final month of your payment holiday, we will write to you before your next payment is due to explain the impact of the payment holiday on your account and to provide details of your revised monthly payment amount.
|How do I start making payments again?|
If, at the end of your payment holiday you consider that you will continue to have difficulties in making your mortgage payments we have several options available to provide you with continued support. These may include:
Please call us if you would like to discuss these options.
Do I have option for paying back the deferred payments in a different way?
Further information that may be of use to you if you are impacted by the coronavirus at this time.
|Help with payment difficulties|
Please see our main Help with payment difficulties page for help and support. The StepChange debt charity has published a reduced income guide on their website that aims to help people deal with a reduced income due to the coronavirus.
Other ways to make your monthly payment
Getting a third party to help you manage your account
Please note: If you wish the nominated third party to act for you and other borrowers named on the account they will be required to sign the form also. In addition, please ask your nominated third party to complete their details and provide a signature in the relevant sections of the form.
Where the nominated third party is an individual their signature confirms they have received a copy of our Privacy Notice which can be accessed here. Please ensure they receive a copy of this, or notify them where this can be accessed.
To enable a third party to obtain information and/or make payments on your behalf to your mortgage account with us, please complete and sign the Third Party Authority form and return it to:
Zephyr Homeloans, Gateway House, Gargrave Road, Skipton, BD23 2HL
CORONAVIRUS AND YOUR WELLBEING
The mental health charity MIND has produced a helpful guide – Coronavirus and your wellbeing – which aims to provide information to support anyone who is feeling anxious about coronavirus. It might be helpful to those who are self-isolating or working from home.
It is estimated that 95% of domestic abuse victims also experience economic abuse. If someone else is controlling your finances or stopping you from controlling your finances, the charity Surviving Economic Abuse has also provided additional guidance and support on their website.
Be aware of scams
More information about the Covid-19 virus