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BSB 805 050

Frequently Asked Questions.

Answers to common questions relating to Coronavirus support measures

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  • Why do variable rates remain unchanged from the rate change announcement on 25 March 2020?

    A number of support measures have been implemented to provide relief to a large range of members impacted by Coronavirus. 

    If you're experiencing financial difficulties due to the impacts of Coronavirus, we may be able to help you via these other measures. To find what support we have available, go to this link. To find out the what rate changes have been implemented as of 26 March 2020, go to this link

    Although variable rates remain unchanged, you may be eligible for a lower fixed rate. To find out if you're eligible please contact us on 13 11 82.

  • Will banks drop interest rates?

    The banking industry cut rates when the Reserve Bank of Australia reduced its cash rate to 0.5% on March 4, and again when the cash rate was reduced to 0.25% on March 20. This leaves rates at an historic low, a level the Reserve Bank expects to be maintained over the next few years.

    There may be some small changes in rates from time to time – depending on the lender – but current rates are likely to be maintained for some time. In fact, it may be a good time to lock in some savings.

    If you’re looking to refinance your Home Loan, take a look at our refinance special offer.

  • Are banks freezing mortgages?

    The banking industry is offering relief for customers and members affected by COVID-19, although the extent of that relief differs with each lender and the customer’s circumstances.

    Most are offering ready access to redraw on any advance payments on your loans, and, as long as you were previously up-to-date with payments, you may be able to defer your repayments for up to six months for some much-needed relief. It is preferable to continue paying down your mortgage to the extent you can.

    People’s Choice has outlined its support for members here.

     

  • How will Coronavirus affect the real estate market?

    In the short term, the real estate industry expects some slowing of activity and a fall in median property values.

    However, property is a long-term investment based on some fundamental factors:

    • population growth,
    • demand for each type of housing,
    • availability of funding, and,
    • infrastructure investment.

    While some of these elements may change in the short term, the long-term outlook for the real estate market remains positive, especially in the face of historically-low interest rates.

     


     

    Subject to the product issuer’s underwriting rules and acceptance guidelines.
    Terms, conditions and exclusions apply and are available upon application.
    The information above is general advice only and does not take into consideration your personal objectives, financial situation or needs (“your personal circumstances”). Please consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (PDS), other Disclosure Documents and your personal circumstances before making any decision to purchase the products. Contact us on 13 11 82 with any questions, or visit your nearest branch to talk to a consultant.

  • How can People’s Choice help me with my loan payments?

    Depending on the type of loan, People’s Choice has implemented a number of loan repayment support measures to assist members experiencing financial difficulties due to the impacts of Coronavirus. This includes deferring repayments, allowing you to redraw your loan or reduce your repayments. Find out more at this link.

  • Will Coronavirus affect housing market?

    The Federal Government has introduced social distancing restrictions to limit the potential spread of COVID-19. Among the restrictions is a ban on auctions and open house inspections, which is already reducing the competition for available properties, thereby cooling the market and its prices.

    The coronavirus has also resulted in many thousands of people losing their jobs or having their hours cut dramatically. A number of these people may have been looking to buy and no longer have the job security needed to purchase a property. Even those with secure jobs are likely to avoid long-term commitments in the face of such uncertainty.

    However, the property market is based on long-term trends. While we may see a short-term fall in house prices and a slowing of the housing market, the long-term fundamentals remain sound.

    The majority of capital cities will return to growing populations, who will be seeking to buy or rent property. In the long term, working from home may become a sustained practice – meaning there could be greater demand for regional housing as people seek a lifestyle that isn’t focused on city life.

    Housing construction has slowed, meaning there is demand for existing properties. And historically low interest rates are in place for the next couple of years to offset the slowing economy and consumer caution.

    There are never any guarantees when it comes to investing, but the long-term fundamentals of property remain sound – even against the immediate downward pressure on the market.

  • Will Coronavirus affect house prices?

    Reports from CoreLogic already show a drop in capital city house prices. National social distancing guidelines limited auctions and open house inspections from late March, cooling demand and reducing competition for properties on the market. There has also been a reduction in the number of properties coming to the market.

    A fall in house prices is to be expected in the short term, but property is a long-term investment. Indeed, some people may see the fall in prices as an opportunity.

  • Can People’s Choice assist me deferring my CGU Insurance if my circumstances have been affected by Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    Our insurance partner, CGU, has announced a series of measures to support current policy holders affected by Coronavirus. Find more information on how CGU might be able to help at this link

  • Can I access my superannuation if I am experiencing financial hardship?

    On 22 March 2020, the Australian Government announced changes to superannuation that enables Australians who are financially impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19) to access their super.

    To find out if you are eligible, visit the Department of Treasury early access to superannuation factsheet.

  • How can I defer my loan repayments as a result of being impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    To find out if you are eligible to defer you loan repayments, please reach out by calling 08 8124 2148, emailing us at [email protected] or visiting us at one of our branches.

    Please be aware that responses may be delayed while our team is managing a very high number of requests for assistance due to the unprecedented Coronavirus situation. 

    If you have Mortgage Repayment Insurance or Income Protection Insurance, you may be able to access this to help you maintain your repayments. Be sure to explore these options.

  • I am not directly impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19), but am experiencing financial difficulty, what can I do?

    Members experiencing financial difficulty at any time can find information about the support we provide on our Financial Hardship Assistance page at this link.

  • How does People's Choice support members experiencing financial difficulties due to the impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    People's Choice has introduced a range of measures to support those experiencing financial difficulty due to impacts related to Coronavirus, such as loss or reduction of income. See all support measures at this link.

  • Does my CGU Travel Insurance cover medical expenses related to Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    For CGU Travel Insurance policies purchased prior to 23 January 2020, you are covered for medical expenses related to the Coronavirus. Click here for more information regarding insurance and Coronavirus.

  • What options are available if I am unable to repay my loan due to financial difficulties relating to Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    People's Choice provides a range of support measures, depending on your situation and the depending on the loantype. For example, if you are experiencing financial difficulty and are unable to make repayments on your home loan due to Coronavirus, People’s Choice may agree to defer your repayments for up to six month, allow you to redraw your loan or reduce your repayments. To find out if you are eligible to defer you loan repayments, please reach out by calling 08 8124 2148, emailing us at [email protected] or visiting us at one of our branches.

    Refer to all of our support measures at this link.

  • I’m on a fixed rate, can I access the current rate?

    No. Fixed rates are secured for the duration of your fixed term set out in your contract. If you are experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the impacts of Coronavirus, please reach find more information at this link.

  • Are my deposit funds safe?

    Yes, your funds are safe. People’s Choice is one of the country’s largest credit unions and, as an Authorised Deposit-Taking Institution (ADI), is part of the Federal Government’s Financial Claim Scheme and its $250,000 deposit guarantee.

    We have been in existence since 1949 and have been growing strongly since.

    You can read more about the Government’s Scheme here.

  • Can I switch my loan to an interest only loan?

    We are happy to discuss payment and purpose options on your Home Loan. Please give us a call on 13 11 82 and so we can discuss an option that best suits your needs.

  • I’m impacted and/or my partner is impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19), what options do we have?

    We’re offering a range of support measures for members experiencing financial hardship due to being affected by Coronavirus. For the full range of measures and to see how to get in touch with us please click here.

  • Are you waiving fees for everyone impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

    No. We have committed to a range of support measures for members impacted by Coronavirus, however we are not waiving fees for all members. We are assessing members’ individual circumstances and will work through putting appropriate support in place depending on the member’s individual situation.

  • Can break cost fees be waived to restructure my loan?

    No. Break cost fees are generally not waived if you plan to restructure your loan, however, if you are experiencing financial difficulties due to the impacts of Coronavirus, we can assess your individual circumstances and work through putting appropriate support in place depending on the individual situation.

    Please note, a quoted break cost fee is only valid for the date that it is quoted. Please refer to the Break Cost Fact Sheet for more information at this link.

    Alternatively, to see what other support measures are available, visit the Coronavirus help page at this link.

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