MAJOR high street banks including Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds and NatWest offer their customers cost of living support.
Hard-up Brits are eligible for hundreds of pounds in government support but many are unaware of the support offered by banks.
Support offered by banks helps those with credit cards, mortgages and overdrafts.
And the extra advice and support offered by banks can often help cushion the blow of higher bills.
Most banks run helplines which they can call if they’re facing severe financial difficulty.
Others offer interest-free overdraft extensions, waived fees and help with mortgage payments.
We’ve listed what’s on offer by some of the biggest high-street banks so you don’t have to go looking.
Barclays customers can call a dedicated mortgage helpline if they’re concerned that they won’t be able to make their monthly payments.
The bank said that it can help customers in severe financial difficulty in two ways – but the help you’ll get will depend on your individual circumstances.
Barclays can extend your mortgage term so that you can pay less each month but over a longer period of time.
Hard-up mortgage customers may also be able to get their monthly mortgage payments reduced for a set period of time.
Barclays has urged any struggling mortgage customers to get in touch by calling 0333 202 7407.
The bank also offers customers the chance to book meetings with “Money Mentors” who can help guide you through new ways to save and budget and help create plans for your money in the future.
Customers can also budget using the Barclays app which allows households to not only track their spending but also set spending limits at the tap of a screen.
Thousands of the bank’s 14 million customers are being given the option to extend their interest-free overdraft limit from £25 to £500.
The borrowing will be available to use for a 12-month period from the extension.
Customers will need to apply to make the change to their account to borrow the extra money.
The overdraft support is available for thousands of customers holding any of the following accounts with HSBC:
- Bank account
- Advance account
- Bank account pay monthly
- Current account
Only those who currently hold an overdraft with the bank can apply for an interest-free extension.
To get the support customers will need to complete a short form on the bank’s website before March 31, 2023.
HSBC has also axed early closure penalties on fixed-rate saving accounts.
It means customers will be able to access their cash early without charge.
HSBC normally charges customers a fee that’s worth 90 days’ gross interest on their balance.
Hard-up mortgage customers can call up the bank on 0800 085 2482 to get support on their monthly payments.
Customers struggling with credit card, loan and overdraft payments can seek help through online banking or on the Lloyds Bank app.
Under their account menu, customers will be shown an option – “Need help with your debt or payments?”
Lloyds Bank will give hard-up customers support by providing money management tips as well as new repayment plans for certain customers.
Earlier in the year, Lloyds Bank offered 130,000 customers a £500 interest-free overdraft buffer for six months.
Hard-up mortgage customers can fill in an online form on the Lloyds Bank website to request help with their monthly payments.
Customers can also book a “Helping Hand” appointment in branch where an expert will review your finances and help find better ways to make your money go further.
Those wishing to book an appointment in branch can do so by calling 0345 300 0000.
NatWest offered customers a handy spending tracker to help customers analyse their incomings and outgoings and work out where they can save.
Hard-up customers can also get help by booking a NatWest “Check-in” appointment with a personal banker over video chat.
These appointments help assess the state of your finances and help give proactive advice to solve money troubles.
NatWest also offers a budget calculator on their website to help households understand if they’re getting all the support they’re entitled to.
How to get free debt help
If you’re in debt there are plenty of services you can take advantage of and they offer free and friendly advice on how to manage debt.
Most of them can offer you free guidance and help in person, over the telephone or online.
- Money Helper – 0800 138 7777
- Citizens Advice – 0808 800 9060
- StepChange – 0800 138 1111
- National Debtline – 0808 808 4000
They can also help you take the next steps if you need a debt management plan (DMP) to tackle your debt or an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA). These are agreements for managing multiple debts.