Mortgage Payment Deferral FAQs

Updated - 12/06/2020

Darlington Building Society is ready to support customers who are experiencing issues with their finances as a result of COVID-19, including giving the option of a mortgage payment holiday. Please be aware that, payment holidays will now be referred to as payment deferrals in all future communications from the Society.
 

We can offer you a mortgage payment deferral of up to 3 months if this is the best option for you. With a mortgage payment deferral you will not have to make your normal monthly mortgage payments.

We can also offer you more tailored support according to your individual situation if you wish to go through a full assessment of your circumstances.

If you are concerned about making your mortgage payments during this time, please read our FAQs below. If you would like to contact us to request a mortgage payment defferal please:

  • Email us at paymentdeferrals@darlington.co.uk
  • Input ‘Mortgage Payment Deferral’ in the subject line
  • Include your name and eight digit account number in the body of the email

Please do this at the earliest possible opportunity and we will respond to you as soon as we can to discuss the options available to you.

Before calling please:

  • Ask yourself: Do I need to speak to my mortgage lender today? 
  • Consider: Can I do this through email or online banking? 
  • Review: Is the answer already on my lender’s website? (We advise Members to read our FAQs below before contacting us)

I am still awaiting a call-back from yourselves?

We are committed to responding to your requests as quickly as possible, but please be aware that due to staff homeworking, our service levels may be slower than usual and we advise all Members to contact us in good time before your next monthly payment is due.

What is a mortgage payment deferral?

With a mortgage payment deferral you will not have to make any monthly mortgage payments for a set amount of time, in this case up to three months.

However, it’s important to remember that you still owe that money and the interest on your mortgage still accrues during a mortgage payment deferral.

This means that, at the end of the mortgage payment deferral, you will have to make up the missed payments and interest accrued. There will be various options for doing this, for example by increasing your monthly payments, or by adding a short extension to your term.

How do I know if I am eligible for a mortgage payment deferral?

To be eligible for a mortgage payment deferral you will need to be up to date on your mortgage payments, and have had your income recently affected by Covid-19.

If you are a Buy-to-Let landlord, it will be available if your tenants have lost income and are unable to therefore pay the rent/part pay because of the impact of COVID-19. See Buy-to-Let landlord below.

There are a number of options available and mortgage payment deferrals aren’t always the most suitable solution for everyone. By speaking to us, we can tailor the best option for you.

How long do I have to apply for a mortgage payment deferral?

You can apply any time up to the 31st October 2020. 

If you are experiencing, or reasonably expect to experience, payment difficulties and need a mortgage payment deferral, you should speak to us in good time before your next payment is due. We will be considerate of others when you contact us and we will support those with much closer dates in the queue first.

How do I apply for a mortgage payment deferral?

If you are concerned about making your mortgage payments during this time you should contact us as soon as possible. You don’t need to provide any documentation; you will just need to self-certify that your income has been either directly or indirectly impacted by COVID-19.  We will also ask you a few questions to understand your circumstances.

I am a Buy-to-Let Landlord, can I apply for a mortgage payment deferral?

If you are a Buy-to-Let landlord, you will need to self-certify that your tenant’s income has been impacted by COVID-19. Landlords must pass on this relief to their tenants to ensure that they are supported during this time.

I am not sure if I need a mortgage payment deferral?

You should not apply for a mortgage payment deferral if you are not experiencing, or do not reasonably expect to experience, payment difficulties.

If you can afford your monthly payments you should continue to pay.  If you are worried about being able to make future payments, it is important that you contact us and discuss your options.

You will still owe the money where a mortgage payment deferral has been granted and interest will still accrue. If you are able to make part, or all, of your normal mortgage payment to reduce the money you owe or your interest charges then you should consider doing so.

There a number of options available and mortgage payment deferrals aren’t always the most suitable solution for everyone. By speaking to us we can tailor the best option for you. If you can afford to start repaying your mortgage again, it is in your best interest to do so.

Will I still be charged interest?

Yes, you will still be charged interest during your mortgage payment deferral.

Can I cancel my direct debit payment instead?

It is only a mortgage payment deferral if it has been agreed with us.

You should not cancel your direct debit without speaking to us first. Cancelling your direct debit is not a mortgage payment deferral and will be counted as a missed payment. This could show up in your credit file and may impact your ability to obtain future credit.

How long will it take to process my application?

We are committed to responding to your requests as quickly as possible, but please be aware that due to staff homeworking, our service levels may be slower than usual and we advise all Members to contact us in good time before your next monthly payment is due.

We are doing our best to support you during these unprecedented times. However, the spread of COVID-19 is also having an impact on our own staff and applications will be dealt with as quickly as possible.

If I take a mortgage payment deferral what will happen to my credit score?

We will make every effort to ensure that if you take a mortgage payment deferral it does not negatively impact on your credit score.

Taking another full or partial mortgage payment deferral should not have a negative impact on your credit file.

However, there are other ways lenders can tell whether you have taken a mortgage payment deferral, which could impact future creditworthiness assessments.

What happens if I am already in arrears, or behind with my mortgage payments?

If you are currently in arrears and entering into a mortgage payment deferral we will contact you when the payment deferral ends to agree a specific arrangement to pay what is affordable, and minimise the build-up of arrears to help recover you into a sustainable position on your mortgage. Again, any forbearance arrangements will aim to minimise the risk of possession.

If you are concerned about the impact Covid-19 will have on your income, then you should contact us as soon as possible. We will review any changes to your circumstances to ensure that your payments remain sustainable. We will make every effort to support people already in financial difficulty, while ensuring a mortgage remains sustainable. You can contact us by phone on 01325 741060, in writing at our head office address or by sending an email to financialsupport@darlington.co.uk.

We have agreed (from 19 March 2020) we will not take any action which could lead to possession, meaning that no homes will be repossessed at this difficult time. This is applicable to residential or Buy-to-Let mortgages.

What if I don’t own my property but rent instead?

You should contact your landlord or managing agent if you have problems paying your rent. If you are a landlord and your tenants are unable to pay their rent you should contact us as soon as possible to discuss the options that may be open to you.

What if I need support longer term, or help to recover to my previous position after the mortgage payment deferral expires?

If you are not currently in arrears but believe you will need additional help at the end of the mortgage payment deferral, please tell us when contacting us about a mortgage payment deferral.

Please ensure that you don’t ask for automatic capitalisation if you do not feel this arrangement to pay is suitable for you. We will then contact you to assess your circumstances and talk through your options. If you are in financial difficulty; we will come to an arrangement to recover you into a sustainable position on the mortgage. Any forbearance arrangements will aim to minimise the risk of possession.

Will I be able to apply for a mortgage payment deferral if I am a mortgage prisoner?

 Yes, we will work with you to support you during these difficult times.

Am I able to change my mortgage deal whilst on a mortgage payment deferral?

Yes, however if you have any fees or charges within the Terms & Conditions of your mortgage product these would still apply, for example, an Early Repayment Charge.

What happens at the end of the mortgage payment deferral?

We will contact you when you are nearing the end of your mortgage payment deferral to find out if you can afford to start repaying your mortgage again.

Depending on your circumstances, your options will be:

•    If you can afford to start repaying your mortgage again, it is in your best interest to do so

•    If you cannot afford to start repaying your mortgage, in part or in full, as a result of circumstances relating to Covid-19, then we will work with you to find out what you can afford and will reduce repayments to that amount for a further 3 months

•    If you cannot afford to make any repayments as a result of circumstances relating to Covid-19, then you will get further support. As part of this, we have a range of options we can consider based on your individual circumstances which can include a further 3-month mortgage payment deferral

Depending on your situation, you may also want to talk about coming to a longer-term arrangement with us, if you can’t currently restart your monthly payments. For instance, it may be in your interests to extend the term of your mortgage. Or you may want to consider switching to an interest only mortgage.

What if my home is being repossessed?

The Society will not take any action which could lead to repossession under any circumstances until 31st October 2020.  If you are worried about payments or repossession you should contact the Financial Support team before this day who have a range of options to support you.

The Society will not commence any action to repossess a member’s home before 30 May 2021 if they are in arrears due to Covid-19, as long as they keep working with us to get their mortgage back on track.

Choosing for your home to be repossessed

 You may choose for your home to be repossessed if you believe it’s in your best interests – for example, because you’ve already made plans for alternate accommodation. If this is the case, please contact us to let us know.

Will I still be charged interest during repossession?

Yes, you will continue to be charged interest on the amount you owe, plus any fees and charges you owe according to our tariff of charges.

What happens if the repossession is stopped?

The amount you owe will increase because interest will continue to be charged. This means that you are likely to get less back if and when your property is repossessed and then sold.

If property prices go down between now and the time your property is sold then you might get even less back, or nothing if your property is sold for less than you owe. We will be able to give you more information on how this affects you.

If you do not want repossession to be stopped, contact us immediately.