By Jean-Francois Munster
Lhe banking sector, through its Febelfin dome, responded to the government’s call. He announced on Thursday that people financially affected by the energy crisis will be able to request a deferral of payment of their mortgage. Here are the practicalities.
What report are we talking about?
People who meet the eligibility conditions (see below) will automatically benefit from a payment deferral from their bank when they request it. This deferral implies that the borrower is not required to make capital repayments for 12 months. However, interest remains due. The term of the credit will be extended by the payment deferral period. In other words, the borrower will repay his credit for 12 months longer than originally planned. The banks undertake not to charge the usual application or administrative fees.
For who ?
A mortgage payment deferral may be requested by individuals who meet all of the following conditions:
– the mortgage was contracted for the main place of residence of the borrowers in Belgium.
– at the time of the payment deferral request, the total movable assets on all current accounts, savings accounts and in the investment portfolio with the own bank or another bank is less than 10,000 euros. Pension savings are not taken into account in this calculation.
– as of March 1, 2022, there was no late payment recorded in the name of the borrower at the Central Individual Credit Center (CCP).
– the borrower has a repayment plan in progress or requested from his energy supplier.
The bank will ask for certain supporting documents to be able to start the procedure, such as proof of the repayment plan or of the request for such a plan from the energy supplier. In addition, the borrower will be asked for a sworn statement that he or she is experiencing payment difficulties due to the increase in the energy bill, and that the total of his movable assets is lower at 10,000 euros.
When can you apply?
The payment deferral can be requested during the period from October 1, 2022 to March 31, 2023 inclusive. It can only be requested for future (monthly) repayments. It takes about ten calendar days for the processing of the request. For the deferral of the payment of a monthly installment due on November 1, 2022, the request must therefore be submitted no later than October 21, 2022.
How to submit the request?
People wishing to benefit from a payment deferral are invited to contact their bank from September 19, 2022 to see if they meet the conditions. This can be done by appointment or via the bank’s available digital channels (email, chat, mobile app, etc.) and by telephone. Febelfin also recommends that those who do not meet the conditions for payment deferral, but who encounter financial problems, contact their bank as soon as possible. “This will allow them to seek solutions to their specific situation with it.”
Are businesses affected?
They will not benefit, like individuals, from automatic measurement. The banks nevertheless insist on their desire to “do everything possible to try to help them get through this difficult economic situation”. Companies that are at risk of experiencing financial difficulties due to high energy prices are invited to contact their bank to find a possible solution adapted to their case. This can take the form of a postponement of the repayment of the capital, but also of additional financing, an extension of the duration of the credit, or even a combination of these formulas, indicates Febelfin.