Updated guidance on support for mortgage and consumer credit customers 

This week the FCA has confirmed updated guidance relating to further support that should be available for both mortgage and consumer credit customers experiencing payment difficulties as a result of coronavirus.

Mortgage and consumer credit consumers will have until 31 March 2021 to apply for an initial or a further payment deferral. After that date, they will be able to extend existing deferrals to 31 July 2021, provided these extensions cover consecutive payments, and are subject to the maximum 6 months allowed.

Consumers who have not yet taken a deferral, and who think they will need the full 6 months are advised to apply in advance of their February 2021 payment being due in order to cover a full six months of payments, from February to July inclusive. 

The guidance makes clear that customers will be able to request more tailored support where a further payment deferral is not appropriate, and this could include reducing or waiving interest.

Payment deferrals under both sets of guidance will not be reported as missed payments on a customer’s credit file; however tailored support may be, and lenders should inform customers where this will be the case. Any payment deferrals offered as tailored support could be recorded on a customer’s credit file.

The mortgage guidance will come into force from 20 November, and credit guidance will apply from 25 November. See the FCA’s website for full details

Furlough and business support

Businesses affected by the pandemic will be able to access the UK government’s Job Retention Scheme which has been extended until March. Key dates for applying are as follows:

-30 November 2020 is the last day employers can submit or change claims for periods ending on or before 31 October 2020

-Claims for furlough days in November 2020 must be submitted by 14 December 2020

See the GOV.UK website for more information. 

The Scottish government has also announced new support for businesses that have to close as a result of further restrictions.