Financial help or difficulty
Circumstances can change, financially or for a number of other reasons, which in turn can lead to financial or other worries. If you find yourself in one of these situations, we encourage you to contact us as soon as possible and we’ll always deal with any financial difficulty or change of circumstance sympathetically and positively.
Coping with money worries
If you are having trouble paying your loan it is better to take action, rather than ignore it and hope the situation goes away. There are a number of options available that may ease your situation and ultimately help to resolve the issue.
Please call us as soon as possible if you are having trouble or think that you may experience difficulty paying your loan in the near future. The sooner you let us know, the quicker we can help and hopefully get you back on track.
Steps to consider
- You should prioritise the payment of bills that will ensure no hardship issues befall your family or any livestock kept as part of your business.
- Check whether you can get any state benefits or tax credits which could help to increase your income.
- If you have an insurance policy, such as income protection insurance, check whether this could help with your payments.
- Seek debt advice, such as from Citizens Advice, or the other organisations listed on our external support page.
- Make sure you keep all joint borrowers, and anyone acting as a guarantor on your secured loans, up to date with what is happening.
- Get back to us as quickly as you can if we try to contact you to discuss your loan.
If you are concerned that you might fall behind with your loan payment:
If you have fallen behind with your loan payments:
- We encourage you to call your Lending Support Manager
How we can help
If you’ve fallen behind with your payments, we will do the following:
- Write to you after a missed instalment on your loan to inform you of the missed amount. We will confirm how much is owed. If you have not already done so, please contact the Lending Support team to discuss the circumstances that caused the missed payment and the best way to handle the matter.
- Give you a reasonable period of time to pay back the debt arrears. If you think you may not be able to pay all your arrears in one go which may make your situation worse, please call the Lending Support team on 01264 334344, as soon as possible.
- Try to arrange a repayment plan that meets your financial circumstances. Having your income and expenditure to hand, including payments to any other companies you owe money, will save time and help us fully understand your situation.
- Talk to an agency which gives debt advice, for example Citizens Advice, or any of the organisations listed on our external support page, if you would like us to.
- Offer to change the method by which you make your payments or the date on which you make them.
- Tell you why we are not able to offer you any of the options available. If we are able to offer one or more of them, we will explain how each option would work and give you time to consider it.
PLEASE NOTE: You may wish to talk to a professional adviser, such as an external debt counsellor before you change your loan arrangements. We would strongly advise that you seek independent, free advice.
Costs and charges
We will charge you if your loan goes into arrears for the first unpaid instalment at £35, together with additional interest at 8% over the Bank of England Base Rate on any arrears. We will tell you the amount you will have to pay - see arrears charges contained within your Business Tariff (PDF, 44KB).
- We may have to go to court to start proceedings if we cannot agree on a solution with you to clear your arrears. If proceedings take place, it is strongly recommended that you attend court and that you seek independent debt advice.
- We will keep trying to solve the problem with you, so the commencement of court proceedings does not necessarily mean that we will repossess your home or surrounding land of your farm.
PLEASE NOTE: Repossession is a last resort. If we have started court proceedings to repossess your home, you should get in touch with your local authority to see if you are eligible for assistance in finding somewhere else to live.