Major banks offer relief packages for NSW homeowners affected by storms

by Julia Corderoy24 Apr 2015
Two major banks have announced disaster relief packages for NSW homeowners affected by the severe storms which swept through the state earlier this week.

Westpac has announced that all affected customers with Westpac home loans may apply to defer repayments for up to three months. Affected Westpac customers with Home and Contents insurance may also be eligible to receive assistance including emergency funds and temporary accommodation.

“Our thoughts are with those people and communities who have been badly affected by the storms as a result of the huge levels of rain, floodwaters and the damaging winds, especially in the Hunter, Newcastle and Sydney areas,” said Jessica Power, state general manager, NSW Regional, Westpac Retail Banking.

“At Westpac, we understand that times like these can be extremely hard - emotionally, physically but also financially.”

The Westpac relief package also offers discounted interest rates and no establishment fee on new personal loans for customers wishing to purchase replacement goods. Further, credit card customers may request an emergency credit limit increase or may apply to defer repayments to their card for up to 90 days.

Commonwealth Bank has also announced a special emergency assistance package. The major bank will be allowing requests for additional loans, including emergency credit limit increases, where the customer could meet the additional repayments without financial difficulty.

It will also be waiving prepayment charges over the next month for affected customers wishing to access term deposits and commonwealth investment bonds ahead of the maturity date.

Further, CommInsure will fast-track claims for existing customers seeking help through their home and contents insurance.

“The disruption and impacts caused by these storms are widespread and we would like to do what we can for our affected customers and community members at this difficult time,” Andrew Hall, executive general manager corporate affairs, Commonwealth Bank said.