30 Apr

What to Do If You Can’t Pay Your Loans During the Coronavirus

girl sitting on bed with bills and credit cards due debt

The coronavirus (COVID-19) has significantly altered how we manage our lives and our workplaces. Many people face a drop in wages or work losses entirely and may find it impossible to keep up with their student loans, mortgage payments, credit card bills, and other debts.

In this post, you’ll get details on the different solutions that may be open to you if you’re concerned about falling behind in bill payments, as well as what you can do to try and protect your credit during this crisis.

Federal Student Loans

The federal “Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act” or the “CARES Act” (H.R. 748) suspends payments without interest for federal student loans held by the United States Department of Education for a total of six months, until 30 September 2020. The termination of payment is automatic, you don’t have to ask for it.

Mortgage Payments 

As soon as you know you’ll be having trouble making your next mortgage payment, contact your loan service company to find out what choices are open to you. You may be eligible for default under the CARES Act or some form of short-term immediate mortgage relief, such as a late-payment waiver.

The CARES Act also imposes a 60-day foreclosure moratorium on federally funded mortgage loans and loans issued, guaranteed, or insured by the Department of Agriculture. This moratorium includes much of the country’s residential mortgage loans.

Property Tax

 If you are late in paying property taxes, several counties are enforcing a moratorium on property tax foreclosures and tax sales. Call your county treasurer’s office or search online to see if your region has a moratorium.

Credit Cards, Personal Loans, Small Business Loans

 Many credit card issuers have issued announcements on their websites detailing a range of forms of customer assistance during the COVID-19 outbreak. Accessible assistance covers credit line changes, forbearance collection, and missed payments. With our credit cards, RMLEFCU provides a free balance transfer and competitive APR*.

When you need money, various lenders, and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is providing loans to those affected by the coronavirus.

Utilities, Phone, Internet

Many phone service and internet providers also waive late charges and postpone shutdowns. Some providers provide free Internet service to new customers or unrestricted data to current customers for a limited period of time, such as 60 days.

Auto Loans 

Lenders offer payment extensions and other options to those that may have trouble paying their car payments. If you refinance your auto loan with RMLEFCU, we offer a 90-day payment free period!

You Have Options at RMLEFCU

The best thing to do is to contact your service or loan providers immediately. RMLEFCU can help you cope with financial stresses during the COVID-19 recovery period. For instance:

  • Consider a low rate personal loan to pay bills to those institutions who aren’t as understanding.
  • Debt protection offers superb financial shielding to cover loan payments in the event of death, disability, or involuntary unemployment.

These and other services are at your fingertips. Please reach out to our Member Experience Team for more information! Email them at lending@rmlefcu.org.

08 Apr

COVID-19 Skip-a-Pay with NO FEE

In good times and hard, we always stand with law enforcement and our members. We continue to monitor developments and all recommendations related to COVID-19. As an organization, we are committed to the safety and security of our members, our work family, and our community. Our core values guide us as we face the difficult challenge of responding to COVID-19.

We were very proactive in our decision to close the lobbies and want to continue to reassure you that all services will continue to be available. If full branch closures become necessary, we have designated a critical action team that will work remotely to ensure minimal disruption.

In consideration of members and their families who face issues due to lost wages, we are making Skip-A-Pay with NO FEE available immediately. Rest assured that, in the midst of these unprecedented events, we continue to stand with the law enforcement community and all our valued members.

Mortgage loans do not qualify for Skip-a-Pay at this time. For mortgage relief, contact our mortgage department.

If you need it, it’s here now. If skipping a loan payment* will help make a difference for you, fill out the form below or call us at 303-458-6660.

02 Apr

Keep an Eye Out for COVID-19 Phishing

It’s no surprise that when there is a crisis, there are bad guys quick to swoop in and take advantage of a concerned public. COVID-19 scammers are on the prowl — so warn loved ones to be alert while on their phones and online. Phishing is already being reported: criminals disguised as charities seeking donations to help those in need.

Scammers and fraudsters are scrounging for card numbers, account numbers, and online banking information by communicating using text, phone, and email. In other words, little numbers that spell big disaster for the unsuspecting. Be scrupulous with your financial data and remember you, yourself may be savvy enough to spot these scams, but others are more susceptible, particularly the very young and the very old.

Remind them, as you remind yourself:

  • Never respond to or open any COVID-19 related emails or email links requesting financial or private information, unless you can confirm you know the individual who initiated the request.
  • Be vigilant and wary of opening an email or email link of any kind if it is from an unrecognized sender. Emphasize to elders in your family that watching out for bad guys does not make you a bad samaritan.
  • Never provide information when requested. Scammers succeed because their approach looks legitimate.
  • RMLEFCU will never call and ask for personal data. NO FINANCIAL INSTITUTION will do that.
  • If a caller claims to be your healthcare provider asking for financial assistance to combat COVID-19, do not take it on face value. Hang up and call your provider’s office number and they will confirm it.

Stay educated and alert by following news reports on phishing during this critical time. Take measures to protect the financial health of those around you, even as you protect their personal health. Ongoing education and awareness are key to keep the fraudsters away from you and your family. If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 303-458-6660 or email us at members@rmlefcu.org. We want to keep you and your bank account safe.

23 Mar

How RMLEFCU Can Help You During This Crisis

hands holding during crisis helping

First things first – we care about our members and want you to be successful. Please be proactive by contacting RMLEFCU if you run into any hard times during this crisis. We can help you save money, but most importantly, reduce some of the tension that you may face if you are facing financial hardship.

Here are just some of the ways RMLEFCU can help right now:

  • Skip-a-Pay is available now to members during this crisis to skip an RMLEFCU loan payment with no fee.* Exclusions apply.
  • Refinance your auto loan at RMLEFCU and receive a lower interest rate and no payments for 90 days. 90 days without a car payment could be a helpful break from a bill during this crisis. Save another 0.5% if you qualify for our relationship rate.
  • Refinance your mortgage with RMLEFCU and receive a $500 lender credit** toward closing costs, plus skip your first month’s payment. This could lower your monthly payment and allow you to skip a payment during the crisis.
  • Transfer your credit card balance from another institution onto an RMLEFCU credit card for free and a likely receive a lower interest rate. See our rates.
  • We are offering low rate personal loans to pay bills to those institutions who aren’t as understanding.
  • Sign up for debt protection to cover loan payments in the event of death, disability or involuntary unemployment.

Do not hesitate to call us if you are having trouble making a payment or if you have any questions about RMLEFCU’s services. Contact us at lending@rmlefcu.org or (303) 458-6660.

What to do During Times of Uncertainty

The last thing you need in times of uncertainty is financial stress. The following financial guide includes free tips, guidance, goods, resources, and financial assistance programs to help you save and access money. This will ensure you have what you need to handle some of the financial and emotional challenges that may occur in periods of instability, specifically during the COVID-19 outbreak. We’ll keep adding more tools, so keep checking back to this post!

Come Up with an Action Plan

Your first step is to come up with an action plan to move forward with confidence. Below are three things that you can bear in mind when you first receive reports about times of crisis.

  • Remain calm. Don’t make irrational or short-term financial decisions during this period of uncertainty. This can actually do more harm than good. Examples include withdrawing large amounts of cash or selling stock at the bottom of a crash.
  • Reduce expenses to a minimum. If your income is limited, it’s a smart idea to reduce your expenses to a minimum. If you are having trouble making a payment, please contact us. RMLEFCU understands what law enforcement officers and their families have to go through and we will work with you to the best of our ability to help reduce financial stress.
  • Keep investments for the long term. If you are an investor, it’s recommended that you do not check the markets daily and take caution against making decisions on the basis of media headlines. These fluctuations may seem concerning now, but over a longer period of time they will average out.

Re-Examine Financial Expenses

It’s not often in life that we re-examine our financial expenses. Here are a few practical things you can do to make the best of these times.

  • Re-examine your bills. Gather all your bills and find out the amount you need to pay every month for essential expenses. Then, you can prioritize your expenses by the amount of satisfaction. Then, you’ll have a better understanding of what to cut out of your budget during hard times.
  • Re-examine subscriptions. Subscriptions are easy to stack up and forget about. We’ve written a comprehensive guide to canceling your unneeded subscriptions to help you determine which are worth keeping and which you can do without.
  • Create a plan for the future. Think about the improvements you want to make in the way you spend your money. At the end of the day, the best way to use your income is to ask: what are the things you should spend money on that make you and your family happy, and what are the things you spend money on that don’t make you happy? When you have learned these things, you’ll be able to build a realistic strategy for healthy financial investment.

Help with Housing Payments and Utilities

Paying for rent and utilities can be some of the greatest challenges these days. Ask your landlord or utility provider if it is possible to seek an extension on full or partial payment if you aren’t able to make it. See if they’re willing to help you get on a payment plan. It never hurts to ask, and they’re most likely amenable to helping out when there is transparent communication.

You can also go to your credit union for assistance in the form of a low rate personal loan or the ability to skip a payment.

Finally, it could be a good time to pick up a side job in an industry that is booming right now, like food delivery or grocery stores, to make a little extra cash.

 

 

* Lines of credit, VISA or mortgage loans do not qualify at this time.

** Exclusions apply. Must be refinancing from another institution.