If you’ve paid any attention to the news for the past few weeks, then most likely you’ve heard the words “government shutdown” and “Obamacare” a time or two (or two hundred). And most of the news is not good. However, positive stories are popping up amidst all the doom and gloom which may impact your life now or your future decisions as a consumer. This includes reports that some banks and lenders are offering a helping hand to furloughed employees. Read on to find out if your bank or lender is on the list. If not, a phone call asking for similar help may do the trick!
Banks Offering Loans to Float Furloughed Workers
Now that the shutdown is in full swing – with no signs of ending – it may be getting more and more difficult for furloughed workers to pay their bills for this and next month. Banks are taking note and many are now offering loans to help.
TD Bank is one bank that has specifically outlined a program to help. They are offering loans in the amount of an individual’s monthly paycheck as well as reimbursement for late fees charged during the shutdown. What’s the best news? These loans are being offered with no interest or fees.
Many other banks are stepping in to help, though with less formalized policies. Most of the big banks in the U.S. have mentioned that they will help furloughed workers who reach out to them. Read a list found in this CNN Money article to see if your bank is one of them.
If your bank isn’t on the list, give them a call and see if they’ll help you anyway. You’d be surprised how flexible a bank might be if you just open the conversation with them. If the first person you speak to says no, ask to speak to a supervisor. It can sometimes take two or three escalations to reach someone who actually has the power to help, so stay the course to obtain the help you need.
Lenders Offering Deferment on Payments for Furloughed Workers
Banks aren’t the only financial institutions catching wind of these troubled times for furloughed workers – some lenders are stepping in as well. Toyota, Hyundai, and Nissan are a few auto lenders that are offering deferment to federal employees. These lenders are often allowing deferments of payments for as long as the shutdown lasts — even up to three months.
If you have student loans, you always have the option to apply for deferment due to economic hardship. Research your lender to find out what the process entails or call them to see if the process can be expedited during the shutdown. Your credit card companies may be willing to offer similar assistance, especially if they are serviced by one of the banks on the above list.
Furloughed workers don’t have it easy during times like this shutdown, nor do others who are indirectly affected. The important thing is to know your options, such as asking for deferments on payments and even obtaining unemployment until the shutdown ends. Just remember, it never hurts to ask for help!
Image Credit Thewmatt