This week in banking - the government’s latest coronavirus stimulus package and 6 other things you don’t want to miss!

Polly Fleeting

Friday 27 March 2020

  • What the new government stimulus could mean for you 
  • Post emergency RBA cut: how to prepare your finances 
  • Customer owned banks come out on top in 2020 Mozo Experts Choice Awards 
  • How mortgage holders and renters are being supported during the COVID-19 crisis 
  • What energy providers are doing to help customers amid Coronavirus outbreak
  • Ever considered ‘Pay-As-You-Drive’ car insurance? Now may be the time to 
  • Meet virtual home buying: the new way to social distance and purchase a property 

All in this week’s banking recap. 

man and woman in small business benefiting from latest government stimulus package 

What the latest Coronavirus stimulus package means for welfare, superannuation and businesses

On Sunday, the Federal Government announced a new $66 billion stimulus package to help protect Aussies that are feeling the upfront effects of the COVID-19 outbreak. 

With the addition of this new stimulus package, over the last month the government has now injected $189 billion (almost 10% of Aussie GDP) - plus, more packages are expected to roll out soon. 

What will this new package do? Here’s who it’s going to help… 

  • Individuals who are already on or apply for welfare can receive a supplement of $550 a fortnight over the next six months 
  • From next month, those affected by the crisis may be able to gain early access to their superannuation (capped at $10,000 per financial year) 
  • And for small businesses, the government will provide cash payments between $20,000 and $100,000 to help keep them afloat 

Read full article: What does the government's latest coronavirus stimulus package mean for you? for a deeper breakdown of what the government is offering and who’s eligible.

Rates edge towards zero: how to prepare your finances post emergency RBA cut 

Last week, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) made an emergency cut to the official cash rate - leaving it at an historic low of 0.25%. 

But what does this mean for you as a banking customer? Well, there are a number of things that the cut effects when it comes to banking products - so it’s worth getting prepared to ensure you are keeping as much cash in your pocket as you can. 

Here’s what you can do: 

  • Look into fixing your home loan: post emergency rate cut, a bunch of providers have slashed fixed rates across a number of terms. Plus, it provides repayment certainty and consistency for borrowers that want to protect themselves from any variable rate fluctuation.  
  • Switch to a better savings rate: Savers have been hit hard by RBA rate cuts, but there are still options. Whether that’s locking your funds away in a term deposit or choosing a high interest savings account - the more you can make your savings grow the better for you! 
  • Refinance your business loan: The spotlight has fallen on small businesses amongst the Coronavirus outbreak, and business loan lenders are responding after the RBA rate cut. For example, the big banks have slashed variable rates ranging from 0.25% (ANZ) to a full 1.00% (CommBank).  

Read full article: RBA slashes rates to near zero: how to prepare your finances now for some more hot tips on keeping financially-savvy. 

The 2020 Mozo Experts Choice Awards for Home Loans prove customer owned banks are a force to be reckoned with 

This year, customer owned banks shone brightly when it came to the 2020 Mozo Expert’s Choice Awards, with some of the best home loans on offer. 

Customer owned institutions brought home a massive 20% of the awards presented, performing well in the First Home Buyer Loan, Packaged Home Loan and Fixed Home Loan categories. 

Some of the winners included Bank Australia, Credit Union SA, G&C Mutual Bank, Greater Bank, Illawarra Credit Union, P&N Bank, Qudos Bank RACQ Bank - all of which are Customer Owned Banking Association members. 

Read full article: Customer owned banks shine brightly in 2020 Mozo Experts Choice Home Loan Awards to find out what Mozo’s Expert Judge, Peter Marshall, says about these findings. 

How the big banks and government are looking after mortgage holders and renters as a result of Coronavirus

Living costs can be expensive, whether you are making mortgage repayments or paying rent. 

So with many Aussies feeling the financial pinch of COVID-19, the big banks and Federal Government have stepped in to help support people in the way they live. 

Mortgage holders
Each of the big four have released initiatives to help ease the pressure for Australians struggling to make home loan repayments as a result of the worldwide pandemic. Some of these include repayment freezes, extensions and access to redraw facilities. 

Renters
A new decision from the government allows renters with commercial or residential leases to maintain occupancy if they can prove that coronavirus has impacted them financially.   

Read full article: Big bank coronavirus support: How to defer your mortgage repayments for a comprehensive breakdown on what each of the big four has put in place. 

What’s your energy provider doing to help you during the COVID-19 outbreak?

As Aussies across the country are learning the art of social distancing and staying at home, household energy consumption is set to skyrocket. 

So to help ease the burden of what could be huge energy bills for many Australians - energy providers are stepping in to take the pressure off. 

Here’s a roundup of what some providers are doing:  

  • EnergyAustralia: offering payment extensions and personalised instalment plans 
  • AGL: waiving late fees or interest charges 
  • Origin Energy: offering delayed payment or payment plan options
  • Simply Energy: offering tailored payment plans or extensions 
  • Red Energy: offering flexible payment options or payment extensions 
  • Energy Locals: option to move to a better energy plan with lower costs 

Read full article: How your energy retailer is supporting customers during the COVID-19 outbreak for a more in-depth look at what energy companies are doing to help.  

Not driving as much because of social distancing? Consider a ‘Pay-As-You-Drive’ car insurance policy 

Aussies have been urged to stay indoors and work from home where possible - meaning many have bid farewell to their daily commute. 

While saving on petrol is one bonus to not jumping in your car everyday, there is another perk you may not have thought of - Pay-As-You-Drive car insurance. 

This type of insurance lets policy holders who don’t drive often take out comprehensive car insurance at a lower premium than regular insurance. 

So where can you get it? Well, a bunch of insurers offer it including Woolworths and Real Insurance

Read full article: Is it time you considered 'Pay-As-You-Drive' car insurance? to find out how you can take out this type of car insurance. 

Ever thought virtual home buying would be a thing? Now it is! 

If most things weren’t online already in our current digital age, the advent of ‘social-distancing’ has forced many more elements of life to be as well… and it’s not just your morning work meetings. 

Say hello to virtual home buying, the new way of purchasing a property and financing your mortgage without setting a foot outside. 

CEO of digital agency Upside Realty, Adam Rigby, said, “It’s of the utmost importance that government social distancing measures are implemented, and the industry needs to adapt quickly.”

Parts of the process include chatting with your agent remotely via video, virtual open home tours and signing documentation online. 

Read full article: Virtual home buying is officially a thing! Here's how it works for a step by step breakdown of this new way to buy. 

Want to check out some hot home loan deals to fund your next home? Check out the great deals below or jump over to our home loan comparison tool for more options.

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