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Over the past eight weeks, the Rising Tide team have taken a somewhat quiet approach as we felt like there was more than enough commentary on what has been happening with the economy. However, I feel that now is an excellent time to remind everyone what financial benefits are available for those who are feeling the pinch of COVID-19 (particularly those in Victoria), so here is a quick recap.
You have cash flow issues
- Early access to superannuation – those eligible can access up to $10,000 between now and December 31st. Applications are made via your mygov account.
- Refinance existing debt – there are some record-low mortgage rates available. Arrange a time to speak to one of our mortgage specialists.
- Mortgage payment holidays – many banks have extended their offer of premiums holidays. Make sure you speak to your bank for more details.
- Negotiate with your utility providers – many providers are open to discussions about deferral of existing bills or setting up payment plans.
- ATO debts – the ATO is open to discussions about setting up payment plans to assist with cash flow.
You are an employee and your income has been affected
Jobkeeper: Phase One finished in September. Phase Two will have lower payment amounts and will also be split into those who worked more than 20 hours per week, and those who worked less than 20 hours per week (pre-COVID). This is a moving beast, particularly given the current Victorian situation and we will update you as soon we can.
You are infected with COVID or forced to isolate, with no other financial support
- Paid pandemic leave: this is available to those who are currently employed but have been forced to take leave. This can include closure of a business or an employee showing symptoms of COVID-19.
- COVID-19 test payment: those Victorians waiting for test results may be eligible for a one-off payment of $300.
You are a business owner that is affected by COVID-19. Business Victoria has several support options for business owners.
These include the following
- Business support package
- Business support fund expansion
- CBD business support fund
- Commercial tenancy relief fund
We recommend you view details about these options, then get in touch with us discuss the next steps. As you may be aware, we have made the call to do 100% of our meetings online or via phone for the rest of 2020. We believe it provides some well needed certainty and has been a real positive for all of us.
Similarly, we have also had some really fantastic outcomes for our clients in the past few months, particularly helping them to reduce outgoings (like their home loan repayments), and to re-calibrate their financial goals using the combination of a clear plan coupled with taking the right actions.
Finally, I would like to take the time to mention a few things I am very appreciative of during 2020:
- The ongoing support of our clients through this time
- The increased number of referrals we have received from existing clients
- The amazing efforts of the Rising Tide team.
We hope that you can also take some small wins out of this situation, and remember that if you need any assistance or have some feedback on how we can support your needs, please lock in a time to chat with me directly.