Optimum credit

Payment holiday information

All information correct at :

26th October 2020 7:17 pm

Following the government announcement to the extension of the Payment Holiday scheme we have updated our Frequently Asked Questions to help you understand what options are available to you.

You may have noticed that Payment Holidays are now also being referred to as Payment Deferrals. For the purpose of our FAQ these can be treated as the same.

If your finances are still being impacted by the Coronavirus and you are considering applying for an extension to your payment holiday, we strongly recommend you speak with us at your earliest convenience to determine if this is the most suitable option for you. You can either speak to your dedicated case handler who will be in touch periodically through your payment deferral or by calling 0333 014 3125

No, as with your initial payment holiday you will have to apply for one and we will assess your situation to determine if this is the best solution for you. If you are granted an extension, we will discuss its length and repayment options with you at the time.

You can apply for an extension up to and including the 31st October 2020, this includes; a partial payment deferral, whereby you continue to pay part of your mortgage payment or a full payment deferral, whereby you are not expected to repay any of your monthly mortgage payment for the agreed period.

If you are granted the full 3 months deferral at the end of October you wouldn’t be expected to resume full repayment until the beginning of February 2021, however it is recommended that those who are able to afford full repayment earlier do so as deferred payments will continue to accrue interest that you will have to pay back over the remaining term of your mortgage agreement.

Yes, if your finances are impacted by Coronavirus you have until the end of October 2020 to apply.

We won’t automatically grant a payment holiday or an extension to an existing payment holiday, we will always discuss the different options with you to determine the most suitable outcome for your circumstances. The Money Advice Service offers a guide to coronavirus mortgage payment holidays which may help you understand whether a payment holiday could be suitable for you.

If the extension is agreed with us, then the deferred payments won’t be adversely registered on your credit file.

Please note that some lenders may still request evidence of whether mortgage payments have been made by requesting bank statements, should you wish to apply for future borrowing.

You should therefore think carefully before applying for a mortgage payment holiday or extension and be prepared to discuss with us, whether it’s the most suitable option for you.

I am worried about the accumulating debt a further 3 months will add to my overall mortgage balance.

The deferred payments will continue to build up during the extension, therefore you should consider the long-term impact.

In some instances, taking self-help steps might be the best option, these include;

· Working out a budget

· Prioritising essential expenses and payments and priority debts ahead of discretionary expenses or non-priority debts

· Contacting all other creditors to discuss repayment options

There are also free debt advice services available, as well as the following resources

FCA information page: Dealing with financial difficulties during the coronavirus pandemic

The Money Advice Service: Coronavirus support page

The deferred payments will continue to build up during the extension, therefore you should consider the long-term impact.

In some instances, taking self-help steps might be the best option, these include;

· Working out a budget

· Prioritising essential expenses and payments and priority debts ahead of discretionary expenses or non-priority debts

· Contacting all other creditors to discuss repayment options

There are also free debt advice services available, as well as the following resources FCA information page: Dealing with financial difficulties during the coronavirus pandemic The Money Advice Service: Coronavirus support page

All customers with an agreed payment holiday will be assigned a case handler who will contact you once a month to talk through any changes in your financial circumstances

If you have a payment holiday agreed with us, then you will have been assigned a case handler who will be in contact with you to support you through the duration of your payment holiday.

The call will originate from 0808 1969766 remember, we will never ask you to disclose personal security information such as debit or credit card pin numbers.

Your case handler will attempt to contact you again. Please wait for our call.

Several different options may have been discussed with you when we assessed your suitability for a payment holiday, and we will be keeping in contact with you throughout the payment holiday.

Some of the options available to you include:

· You can apply for an extension if you haven’t utilised the full 3 months and are still being negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic

· You agree to pay off the outstanding balance through an arrangement to pay over a number of months

· You can make a lump sum payment

· You have your monthly repayment recalculated over the remaining term of the mortgage as per the illustration we provided when we set up your payment Holiday. Any partial payments you have made will be applied before the recalculation is completed.

It’s really important that we speak to you so that we can talk you through the different options available to you and agree the most suitable repayment strategy.

This is called a partial payment and it is completely optional.

Any partial payments made during the payment holiday will be applied at the end of your payment holiday period.

If you wish to make a partial payment during your payment holiday, please call 0333 0143125 to make a payment.

No, we will only calculate your new monthly mortgage payment, once the payment holiday has come to an end.

If you decide to make a partial payment via standing order or bank transfer, please put your mortgage account number as the reference. You can find your mortgage account number on correspondence from us.

Yes, we can accept a partial payment over the phone and there is no limit on how much can be paid, however, it should only be the mortgage customer making the payment.

If you wish to make a partial payment during your payment holiday, please call 0333 0143125 to make a payment.

No, we will recalculate your monthly repayment amount at the end of the payment holiday, taking any partial payments into account. We will then send you all this information in a letter.

This is something that your case handler will discuss with you. They will work with you to understand the most suitable repayment strategy based on your individual circumstances.

Yes, if your circumstances have improved and you would like to cancel this for future months, please let us know and we’ll discuss with you, your options at the end of your payment holiday.

This could include a lump sum payment, partial payment, recalculating the payments over the remaining term or an arrangement to pay this over a number of months. This would allow you to repay the deferred payments at a rate that is right for you, however it would show on your credit report as an “arrangement”.

No, we will work with you to understand your personal financial circumstances and what you believe you can afford to pay.

In these exceptional circumstances we will take a flexible approach and determine how best to help you. It is therefore necessary that we understand the cause of the actual or anticipated financial difficulty and we will discuss this with you. We’re offering a range of forbearance options to support customers who have been financially affected by the coronavirus and we will work with you to understand which is most suitable. All options will be considered, and a Payment Holiday will be offered, if it is the most appropriate solution for your individual circumstances.

If you anticipate or are currently experiencing financial difficulty. Please use the following email address to contact us: customerservices@optimumcredit.co.uk

Please put your payment date and account number in the subject line.

If your payment is due in the next 7 days and you have not already heard from us, please contact us via the social media links on our website. Please do not publicly share any personal details on social media. These should only be shared via direct messages.

Please note that these are unprecedented times and we are experiencing extremely high contact volumes. We are attempting to contact everyone as quickly as possible with pending mortgage payment due dates as a priority.

We may issue an SMS to inform you of an upcoming contact attempt. In the event we are unable to contact you a further SMS may be sent. Please do not reply or send any personal data via SMS.

A payment holiday is when you take a break from paying part or all of your monthly payment.

For the duration of the payment holiday interest will accrue. At the end of the 3 months we will consider what action is most appropriate to your circumstances with the aim to ensure your mortgage payments are affordable and that you can sustain these payments over the mortgage term.

A payment holiday is only one of several options available and might not be the most suitable solution for you. We will help you determine what approach is most suitable for you from a range of forbearance options that we can offer.

No, if a mortgage payment holiday is agreed as the most suitable solution for your circumstances, then the loan will not show in arrears.

If you are not in a mortgage holiday agreement and fail to make the necessary contractual repayments, then the missed payment would be reported to the credit reference agencies in accordance with existing practice.

Some customers may find themselves unable to re-mortgage or take advantage of a product transfer if still in a payment holiday at the end of their fixed rate period or until the payments not made during the payment holiday are repaid .

We will want to understand the real cause of the actual or anticipated financial difficulty and then discuss potential forbearance options with you.

As we may complete an income and expenditure assessment for each applicant, if you are thinking about taking a mortgage payment holiday of up to 3 months we would encourage you to get in touch with us as soon as possible to discuss if this is the best option for you.

For customers in arrears or financial difficulty we would encourage you to contact us as soon as possible so that we can help. We will need to understand your individual circumstances to ensure that we can offer the most appropriate forbearance options.

We recognise that these are unprecedented and difficult times and we are here to help. If you are thinking about the need to take a 3-month payment holiday we would encourage you to get in touch with us as soon as possible to discuss this, or any other forbearance options might be best for you.

You should also visit gov.uk for the latest information about financial support available from the government for your situation.

Once your initial mortgage deal ends you will automatically move onto one of our reversion rate products, these products come with no Early Repayment Charges.

We would recommend that you contact your mortgage broker or independent financial adviser to discuss your requirements.. This may be possible whilst you are self-isolating as many brokers and advisers have made provisions for working remotely via video link or telephone.

No. We would advise that you do not cancel your direct debit until you have spoken to us so that we can discuss your individual circumstances.

In these exceptional circumstances we will take a flexible approach and determine how best to help you. It is therefore necessary that we understand the cause of the actual or anticipated financial difficulty and we will discuss this with you. We’re offering a range of forbearance options to support customers who have been financially affected by the coronavirus and we will work with you to understand which is most suitable. All options will be considered, and a Payment Holiday will be offered, if it is the most appropriate solution for your individual circumstances.

If you anticipate or are currently experiencing financial difficulty. Please use the following email address to contact us: customerservices@optimumcredit.co.uk

Please put your payment date and account number in the subject line.

If your payment is due in the next 7 days and you have not already heard from us, please contact us via the social media links on our website. Please do not publicly share any personal details on social media. These should only be shared via direct messages.

Please note that these are unprecedented times and we are experiencing extremely high contact volumes. We are attempting to contact everyone as quickly as possible with pending mortgage payment due dates as a priority.

We may issue an SMS to inform you of an upcoming contact attempt. In the event we are unable to contact you a further SMS may be sent. Please do not reply or send any personal data via SMS.