For personal customers:

·         Mortgage and loan repayment deferral for up to three months

·         Customers can close fixed savings accounts to access cash with no Early Closure Charge

·         Refunds on credit card cash advance fees

·         Customers can apply for increased temporary credit card limit

·         Customers can request an increased cash withdrawal limit of up to £500

 

For business customers:

·         New or increased overdrafts with no arrangement fees for up to six months

·         Capital repayment holidays and reduced payments for up to six months with no arrangement or administration fees

·         Fee-free loan funding to replace assets.

 

The serious flooding across much of North West England and Southern Scotland is likely to have financially affected many people and businesses in those areas. This is a difficult time for those impacted, so NatWest and RBS have introduced a range of measures to support our personal and business customers and ease the financial strain caused.

Les Matheson, CEO of Personal and Business Banking at RBS and NatWest, said: “We want to help the people and business owners affected by the recent flooding by making banking the least of their worries.  We’re providing additional credit or access to finance where needed, so they can concentrate in getting their homes or businesses back to normal.

All of our branches in the affected areas have remained open, but we know some of our customers may not be able to get to us. We would urge our affected customers to get in touch with us, either by phone or in a branch, to discuss how we can help them get back on their feet.”

Further information on all the measures being offered, including specific contact numbers, are detailed in the notes to editors. Where a number is not specified, customers should call the following numbers or visit a branch:

NatWest personal banking                                                         03457 888 444

RBS personal Banking (with accounts in Scotland)            0345 6002230

RBS personal Banking (with accounts in England)             0345 900 0400

 

NatWest Business Banking         03457 11 44 77

RBS Personal Banking                    03457 888 444

Christmas is the one time of year when your bank balance can take a real hammering, so it’s a big help if your employer enters into the festive spirit and pays your December salary a week or two in advance.

This may initially prove to be a godsend particularly when faced with the extra cost of paying for presents, festive food and drink and those parties and extra nights out.

However the downside of getting paid a little earlier means it’s easier to lose track of your debit card transactions and direct debits, particularly when your next payday could be up to six weeks away.

Failing keep tabs on your current account balance with a ‘worry about it later’ attitude, could see you exceeding your agreed overdraft limit and facing a hefty bill for bank charges come the first few weeks of 2016.

That’s not the best way to kick off the New Year, particularly as you’ll have the post-Christmas credit card bills to deal with too.

If you don’t already have an agreed overdraft in place or you think you could do with a little more financial breathing space over the festive period, speak to your bank or building society now to arrange an authorised overdraft sufficient to see you through to the end of January.

It’s usually a simple and pain free process and can be arranged very quickly either online, by phone or if you prefer the face to face approach then pop down to your local branch.

Once you’ve got your safety net arranged, make sure you keep a close eye on your balance – there’s no excuse not to these days with the information available 24×7 online, on your Smartphone App or via an ATM.

To put into perspective the importance of staying within your agreed limit, we looked at how much it could cost you if your bank allows you to drift £200 over your limit due to two £100 debit card payments and then your account remains overdrawn by this amount for 7 days in a row.

The numbers are too big to ignore, with customers of Lloyds Bank account facing a bill of £76, NatWest and Santander customers £42.00 and Halifax and Barclays  both £35.00 – so it’s definitely worth being proactive and getting your finances organised otherwise whichever tariff you’re signed up to, it can end up hitting your pocket hard.

New research from Charter Savings Bank  has found that more than a fifth of UK adults with savings are earning 0.5% interest or less on their primary savings account, which is less than the base rate set by the Bank of England. The research shows that as a result of historically low interest rates, combined with poor High Street offerings, the average UK savings pot, now £8,500, could earn just an average of £43 a year of annual interest.

These ‘modern day mattress savers’ are earning only slightly more in interest than the 174,000 UK adults who keep the majority of their savings  in an unsecured place, such as under real mattresses or in shoe boxes. To give an idea of the scale, the Bank of England recently estimated that UK homes have £3 billion of cash stashed away. 

The research also reveals that whilst saving is a habit for the UK, many are simply not engaging with their hard-earned money: nearly a third (32%) of UK adults with savings admitted they do not know the current rate of interest on their main savings account, while almost a fifth (17%) admit to having never checked the rate on their primary savings account.


Paul Whitlock, Director of Savings at Charter Savings Bank, said: “High street banks are offering little more to the UK than a secure mattress for their savings, and with news that more than 400,000 NS&I savers will see interest rates on their Isas cut, it’s no surprise UK savers have themselves lost interest in their savings. People are simply not aware of how much harder their money could be working for them and so have become apathetic to taking their money from under their mattress, or from out of their High Street bank.”