North Queensland storms: What is your banking provider doing?

Days of severe rainfall and flooding in North Queensland - particularly in the Cassowary Coast and Hinchinbrook regions - has resulted in millions of dollars of damage as the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) officially declared the storms a “catastrophe” for the region on Saturday.

The ICA is currently working with the Palaszczuk Government and state emergency services to ensure that the hardest hit areas are tended to first and have said the insurance industry will prioritise claims from those regions.

“The ICA and insurers are closely monitoring the current catastrophe and are liaising with emergency services and the Queensland Government,” said ICA CEO, Rob Whelan.

“I assure the residents of North Queensland and Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk that the insurance industry is harnessing its resources to help customers in a fair and timely manner.”

RELATED: Home insurance pricing in the north is actually fair, ICA

What is your banking provider doing?

A bunch of Australia’s biggest banks have been quick to offer a helping hand to their customers via social media or through detailed relief packages. Check out what a range of providers have had to say below.

ANZ - Financial assistance package

As part of ANZ’s financial assistance package affected customers will be able to suspend repayments on loans (including credit cards), adjust lending limits and assess term deposits without incurring fees, among other things.

You can enquire about the package by calling ANZ’s financial hardships team on 1800 149 549. 

Commonwealth Bank - Emergency assistance package

Commonwealth Bank have announced a similar package, promising customised assistance for home loan, term deposit, credit card and personal loan customers. The big bank has said it will restructure business loans and consider additional loans for those affected.

Enquire about what Commonwealth Bank can offer you, if affected, by calling 1300 720 814.

NAB - Relief package

The NAB relief package will provide home loan and personal loan customers repayment breaks as well as offering customers access to term deposits ahead of maturity at no cost.

NAB customers can find out more by calling 1800 701 599.

Other providers

A host of other providers have taken to social media to offer their support for customers. You can find a list of them here alongside the best number to call if you’re a North Queensland customer.

  • Citi - 1800 722 879
  • Bank of Queensland - 1800 079 866
  • Bankwest - 1300 769 173
  • Westpac - 132 032

If you don’t see your provider here, but would like to have a discussion about how they may be able to assist you financially, your best bet is to give them a call on their general inquiries line or if they one, speak to their financial hardships team.

Preparing your home insurance claims

The Insurance Council of Australia has said it will prioritise claims from affected areas. Here are five tips to make sure you get your claim filed and approved as quickly as possible.

  • Get in contact with your insurer as soon as possible. Many will have online claims systems, mobile apps or 24/7 phone lines to make it easier.
  • Don’t worry if you can’t get your hands on home insurance documents. Your insurer will only need the name of the policyholder and the address of the property to find a policy.
  • Contact your insurer before making any repairs. You should only make emergency repairs to your property for safety reasons.
  • Make a list of any damaged possessions.
  • Take photos of any damage to your property or possessions as evidence for your claim, but only when it’s safe to do so.