Online help when you’re struggling with your bond

2012-02-18 12:53

Nedbank has launched a payment solutions website to aid clients who can’t keep up with their mortgage repayments.

The website provides a description of the four main options available to clients such as:

» Paying back any missed payments over time;
» Restructuring the loan over a longer period and paying back a smaller amount each month;
» Selling the house on the open market using a process called Nedbank assisted sales; and
» Doing nothing and forcing the bank to pursue foreclosure.

The site also provides an indication of when each option is most suitable as well as an estimator that shows the effect on the client’s finances of each option.
This is customised to the client’s situation, based on simple information provided by the client.

Nedbank says the two most popular of these solutions are restructures and assisted sales.
Restructures are ideally suited for clients who still have regular income but are struggling to make ends meet. By allowing the loan to be repaid over a longer period of time, the monthly repayment is reduced.

Once the client has an idea of how they would like to proceed, or if they require additional information, they can contact a fully trained debt specialist who is equipped to provide advice and support for the client’s decision-making process. Nedbank has helped more than 13 000 clients keep their homes this way.

Debi Mišura, general manager of Nedbank home loans collections and recoveries says: “We’ve developed a tool for clients to use to assess their own situation and make the best decision accordingly.
“By making the right choice now, and sticking to that course of action, our clients are able to recover from difficult situations in the quickest possible time.”

The decision to develop the website came after noticing the number of clients who refused to participate in the banks debt-recovery programmes, often to their own detriment.
“The simple fact is that most clients that end up at a sheriff sale have either given up hope or have tried to delay selling their homes in the hope that their situation will suddenly improve.

“Many clients have incorrect information about what happens at a sheriff auction.
“Our experience has taught us that these clients end up losing the most money and our hope is that by providing information through this website, and building a team of specialists to provide support, those clients will make better decisions earlier on in the process,” says Mišura.

The Nedbank Assisted Sales programme is similar to FNB’s quick sale and is suited for clients with severe affordability problems, typically due to a major decrease in income.

Nedbank helps the client sell their property in the normal way on the open market making use of an approved estate agent.
This gets a much better price than through a sheriff auction so both the client and the bank benefit.

If the price achieved is below what the client owes the bank, and it often is, Nedbank offers appropriate terms to enable debt repayment while keeping a clear credit record.

Nedbank currently helps between 100 and 150 people sell their property this way each month.

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