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Payment difficulties 


We're here to help you get back in control of your finances.

Worried you can’t make your payments?

Life doesn’t always go to plan, and there are all sorts of reasons why people can end up with financial worries. We’re not here to judge. Instead, we can help you get back in control over your finances. The good news is that this can be less daunting than you think. But it’s really important that you start tackling the problem straight away, rather than ignoring it.

 

Remember: we’re here to help

 

If you’ve already missed a payment, or think you might in future, give us a call as soon as you can. Telling us means we can help prevent the situation becoming even harder to manage.


Where do I start?
You’ll see a number of different options below. They explain what we can do to support you, what you can do to help yourself, and how we can work together. Take the time to have a good read through them.

 

We recommend you begin with Budgeting. It’ll give you a good idea of where you’re at with your finances — and we’ll guide you through the bits we think you need to know.

Contact us

Call us on 0800 121 8765. It’s free, we aim to answer quickly and our advisers are keen to help.
 

If you’d prefer a call back, just fill in our Help and Support form and we’ll be in touch.

Budgeting

Budgeting isn’t complicated. All you’re going to do is make a list of what you earn, what you owe, and what you spend. That’s it. Having those numbers in front of you will help you understand exactly how tight your finances are — and whether there are some costs you could cut for the time being.

It’s really important that we understand your situation so that we can find options that’ll work for you.

 

Save time by using our interactive budget tool
Try our interactive budget tool, Paylink, which will walk you through the budget process. Completing it should take around 10-15 minutes — less time than answering the same questions over the phone. It can also get information from your credit data to make the process easier (don’t worry -this won’t show up on your credit record, and is optional).

You can stop and start Paylink whenever you like, and give us a call if you get stuck. When you get to the end, you can share your budget with us and also keep a copy to share with other creditors.

If you’d prefer to just fill in a simple budget planner form instead, we’ve included one here.

 

What you’ll need
Grab a cup of tea, and gather together your bank statements, payslips and anything else that’ll help you work out how much money you’re spending and earning.

The budget planner is provided by our partners PayLink Solutions. Once you’ve proceeded to the log in page please read the Privacy Policy to understand how your data will be used and managed. If you have any concerns about this please contact us.

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What are my options?

The short answer is that it depends on your budget and how long your situation’s likely to last. Don’t worry — we’ll make sure all the options we suggest are affordable, based on what we know about you and your budget.

Short term options

  • We can reduce or stop your payments for a little while, to get you to a point where you can start full payments again. This will show as arrears on your records and we’ll need to make an arrangement for you to repay missed payments once your situation has got better. We'll continue to charge interest on the mortgage even when payments are temporarily suspended.
  • We might be able to move you to an interest-only mortgage for a short time. This will reduce your payments but it’s important to remember that you won’t be paying back any of the original amount borrowed, so it’ll need to be repaid in the future. 

Longer term options

  • If you can afford to make part of your payment each month, then changing the product you have could reduce your monthly payment. But remember, your mortgage product might have Early Repayment Charges that still apply. If you choose to do this, we can look at the mortgages we have available and their interest rates and see if changing to a new one could help.
  • If you have a repayment (i.e. not interest-only) mortgage, spreading the repayments over a longer period of time will lower your monthly payments. However, it means that you’ll have a mortgage for longer and pay more interest than you would have done originally. But you can always reduce your term again in the future if things improve for you.
  • If you don’t expect to be able to afford the mortgage in the long term, we can give you time to sell your property, and we can help you along that process while holding off on any action.
Making an arrangement

We’ll always do our best to help you

 

But we can only do this once we understand what’s causing your problems, how long it’s likely to last, and what your budget situation is at the moment.

If you’ve used our Paylink budget tool, we’ll also be able to see that information on our screens rather than having to start from scratch. If you haven’t, we’ll spend around 30-40 minutes chatting to you over the phone. The more information you have to hand (like bank statements and wage slips), the better.

Once we’ve got a clear picture of what’s going on, we’ll discuss your options with you. We’ll need to make sure that you’ll be able to afford whatever we agree.

Please don’t cancel your mortgage payment until we’ve spoken to you. Missed payments could affect your credit rating and you could be charged further fees for any letters we have to write about arrears that we haven’t agreed. So it’s important we come up with a plan together to avoid this happening.

Our arrears process

If you’re struggling to afford your mortgage payments, getting in touch with us straight away means we can work together to find a solution. We would always rather avoid having to take legal action because of missed payments. However, it’s important for you to understand what could happen if you ignore the situation.

 

We’ll try and make contact with you

Firstly, if you miss payments and don’t contact us, we’ll write to you and call you to see if we can talk about your situation. We’ll need to charge you for our costs, and we’ll report the missed payments to Credit Reference Agencies — which could affect your future credit applications.

 

After 3-4 months

If we haven’t been able to talk to you and find a solution by this time, we’ll consider taking legal action. We might also visit your home to try and make contact. We’ll charge you for this.

Our solicitors will begin applying for a court order, which can give us the right to take possession of your property to pay back the loan. They’ll contact you to tell you what action’s being taken, and give you options to get in touch with us or them.

Our solicitor charges could add significant extra fees to your balance. So it’s always better to avoid this and speak to us as soon as you can.

 

Court orders

If the court gives us permission to take possession of your property, we will instruct our agents to put it up for sale at the best price they think it could reach. Once it’s sold and agent fees have been paid, the remainder of the money will go back to you. However, if the sale price isn’t enough to pay off your loan, we’ll contact you to find out how you’ll repay the shortfall.

Remember: it’s never too late to contact us

It’s important to bear in mind that although this might all sound very distressing, you can get in touch with us at any time through the process to try and work something out with us. Repossessing your property is always our last resort and we’ll always try to avoid doing this if we can.

Getting some more help

If you’ve got other credit commitments (for example, unsecured personal loans or credit cards), talking to each creditor separately — and going over the same information with each of them — can take up a lot of time.

Free Debt Advice organisations can do some of this work for you. They’ll go through your situation, and discuss your budget and what you owe, so they can make a plan with your creditors. They can also make sure you’re getting any benefits you might be entitled to.

All of these organisations have lots of information on their websites. They’re all regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, so you know you’re dealing with the right people to help you:

 

•        PayPlan

•        The Money and Pensions Service

•        MoneyHelper coronavirus information

•        MoneyHelper

•        StepChange Debt Charity

•        National Debtline

•        Citizens Advice

 

Has your income been affected by coronavirus?

There are various government schemes offering financial and income support for people affected by the pandemic. Whether you’re working, self-employed or not currently working, you might be eligible for some support. Find out more at www.gov.uk/coronavirus

 

Do you have an income protection policy?

Check any income protection policies you might have, as these could help your situation.

Read our payment difficulties FAQs for more information

We support the IEP Code of Best Practice for Debt Collection and Recovery

The Inclusive Economy Partnership (IEP) code contains practices that we sign up to so we give you fair and consistent treatment when supporting you with your payment difficulties. You can read more about the code here.

Want help?
Our help section is bursting with useful information. If you'd rather chat, just give us a call.

 

Call us on 0800 121 8899

Lines open
  • Mon-Fri 8am-7pm
  • Saturday 9am-2pm
  • Sunday & Bank holidays Closed
Call us

Want help?
Our help section is bursting with useful information. If you'd rather chat, just give us a call.

 

Call us on

0800 121 8899

Call us