The six-month moratorium that began in April 2020 is one of the COVID-19 incentives by the government which have benefited borrowers, especially those affected by loss of income or salary cut. Although only temporary, the granting of the moratorium was implemented at the right time and was able to help individuals ease their financial burden in times of crisis. To date, many households were able to survive without having to worry about debt commitment for this period.
The moratorium that has been implemented will soon end on 30th September 2020. For those whose incomes have not been affected by the pandemic but still choose to accept the moratorium, they will not have difficulties paying back the loan post moratorium. However, those who are still financially challenged and are struggling to make end meets are urged to seek help early either by contacting their respective financial institutions or Agensi Kaunseling dan Pengurusan Kredit (AKPK). AKPK is ready to provide financial counselling and debt management services to affected individuals.
The following are some of the useful tips to assist individuals preparing for post-moratorium financial challenges:
- Be mentally and emotionally prepared that there will be no extension of moratorium after 30th September 2020. Borrowers need to make preparation for repaying their debts as usual.
- Do not wait until the last minute. Fulfil your obligation as a borrower. Plan your loan repayment before the moratorium ends. Contact AKPK for money and debt management advice. Don’t hold back because the longer we wait, the less options we’ll have in finding a solution.
- Find out the latest loan monthly instalments – Remember to contact your financial institution for information on the latest monthly instalment post-moratorium. There may be some increase in the monthly loan repayments.
- Review your current financial position by updating your financial statements such as net worth and cash flow statements. The net worth statement provides a clear picture of your debt position as well as existing assets, whereas the cash flow statement shows the source of income and cash outflows. These financial statements can help us plan the necessary actions that need to be taken such as liquidating an asset in time of need.
- Review Monthly Budget and manage your cash flow. It is important to review the post-moratorium monthly budget to ensure we are able to meet debt repayment requirement post-moratorium.
Prioritise expenses such as debt repayments, utility bills and rentals
Avoid unnecessary expenses such as eating out and entertainment to generate positive cash flow. We are in an unprecedented time that demands financial management to be carried out even more prudently.
6. Start to plan on how to secure future income. Try new ways of generating income or revenue to replace income loss.
7. Explore retraining and upskilling. Consider free online courses to increase knowledge in existing / new areas that allow us to have better job opportunities.
8. COVID-19 incentive package – Don’t forget to explore the available COVID-19 compensation fund or incentive packages provided by the government such as one-off cash assistance, assistance for employees asked to take unpaid leave during MCO or assistance for small and medium sized enterprises.
- Scam alert. Be vigilant always. There are reported scams on jobs recruitment and investment involving compensations received or retirement funds.
For further enquires, AKPK can be reached at 03-26167766 or via its website www.akpk.org.my and bit.ly/AKPKdmp2020 link. For the latest tips on financial management and online financial management, go to power.akpk.org.my or AKPK social media sites.