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Flood victims urged to consider options before agreeing to overdrafts or payment holidays

24 February 2014

Several UK banks and building societies have announced that they are implementing measures to help relieve the financial burden for flood victims, with some offering extensions on overdrafts or mortgage repayment ‘holidays’ to affected customers.

As flooding continues to take its toll on families throughout the UK, Gocompare.com’s banking spokesperson, Matt Sanders, comments on the options that are being offered to flood victims by banks and building societies.

Matt said: “It’s great to see that some banks and building societies are offering a helping hand to customers experiencing difficulties due to flooding. However, it’s important for those affected to thoroughly assess their options to establish the best ways of making ends meet in this tough time.

“For instance, though some providers are offering extensions on overdrafts or repayment holidays on loans and mortgages, it’s extremely important to remember that these are still a form of debt and you will be expected to pay what you owe back, along with any interest you may have accumulated on it.”

“Before agreeing to any form of emergency aid from your bank, such as a repayment holiday or overdraft extension, be sure to find out what the interest rate and repayment schedules are to ensure that you can afford to pay it back. Being unable to meet repayments can have serious consequences and affect your chance of getting credit in the future, so it’s vital to know what you’ll be able to pay back and when. If you feel your financial situation is unmanageable, there are organisations that can offer guidance, such as Citizens Advice or the Money Advice Service.”

Matt added: “Although some banks and building societies are really stepping up and doing what’s right for their customers, it’s important to for people to take some time to consider what is available to them, and ensure that they’re not signing up for anything that they will struggle to pay back at a later date.”

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