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What is a mortgage payment holiday?

If you’re worried about paying your mortgage during the coronavirus pandemic, a payment holiday allows you to pause your monthly payments for a temporary period.

New guidance from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) means payment holidays are now also referred to as ‘payment deferrals’. So you may see or hear this phrase used elsewhere. But don’t worry ‘payment holidays’ and ‘payment deferrals’ are the same thing.

Here are some important things you should know first:

  • during your payment holiday, interest will continue to accrue and will be added to your loan balance
  • this will result in an increase to your monthly payments (when they restart) and the total cost of borrowing
  • taking a payment holiday will not worsen the status on your credit file, but keep in mind that lenders may take into account other information when making future lending decisions
  • taking a mortgage payment holiday is only suitable for short-term financial concerns
  • find out more about what to do if you have longer-term concerns over your mortgage payments
  • a payment holiday will be a variation of your mortgage agreement with us, and no other terms or conditions will change
  • if your situation changes and you'd like to shorten your payment holiday, you can contact us to arrange restarting your mortgage payments

Financial Conduct Authority guidance (FCA)

How and when can I take my mortgage payment holiday?

The guidance provided by the FCA states that:

The maximum payment holiday you’re allowed is 6 months in total, but 3 months is the most you can take at any one time.

Since 1 April 2021, you've only been able to apply for another payment holiday if it follows on from a previous one. You can't have made a contractual payment during this time and must have taken less than the 6 months maximum total.

All payment holidays must finish by 31 July 2021.

Who can I speak to for independent advice?

You can find independent advice from: 

StepChange Debt Charity: visit the StepChange website or call 0800 138 1111

Money Advice Service: visit the Money Advice Service website or call 0300 500 5000

National Debtline: visit the National Debtline website or call 0808 808 4000

Citizens Advice: visit the Citizens Advice website or call 0344 411 1444

Making payments during your payment holiday

If you can afford payments of any amount during your payment holiday, we strongly encourage you to do so. These payments could reduce the amount of interest accruing on your balance, as well as the amount of your future monthly payments and the total cost of borrowing.

You can pay as little or as much as you like and whenever suits you. These payments can be made as a single payment, by setting up a regular standing order, or as ad hoc payments when your finances allow. 

To set up a standing order, or one-off transfer, you’ll need:

  • beneficiary – name(s) on your mortgage account
  • sort code – first 6 digits of the mortgage account number (this will always begin with 40)
  • account number – the following 8 digits of the mortgage account number
  • reference – choose your own reference, this is how the payment will appear on your mortgage statement

Your mortgage account number and sort code can be found on your mortgage statement, or offer. You can also see them by logging on to online banking and looking under ‘My Accounts’.

If you want to make payments to more than one mortgage account, you'll need to follow the process above for each account.

Find out more about payment options.

What happens when your payment holiday ends?

Before your payment holiday ends, we’ll get in touch by letter to let you know your new monthly payment and explain your options. You’ll need to wait until you receive this letter before deciding what you want to do.

If you're coming to the end of your payment holiday and are yet to receive your letter, find out more about what happens next.

If you’ve already received your letter with your new monthly payments, find out about the next steps.

 

Call us

To discuss your options, please call us on 0800 169 6333 and select option 0.

Lines are open:

Monday to Saturday, 08:00 to 20:00

Sunday, 09:00 to 18:00

I have a payment due soon and haven’t heard from you since submitting my application. What should I do?

If you have a mortgage payment due in the next 7 working days that you'll be unable to make, please call us.

So we can help the customers most in need, please only call if you're in this position.

I want to end my payment holiday early. What should I do?

To bring your mortgage payment holiday to an end before it expires, please call us.

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