Support for your six-month home loan repayment deferral

If you have a six-month home loan repayment deferral due to the impacts of COVID-19, find out more about what it means for you and some of the things you could do.

Choose a help topic

What does the repayment deferral mean for me?

I’m thinking about restarting my repayments

​I think I’ll need additional support when my deferral period ends

General FAQs

I have a six-month home loan repayment deferral – what does that mean for me?

It means you don't have to make any home loan repayments during the six-month deferral period.

It's important to note that, by deferring your repayments, the interest will be capitalised. This means that the interest you'd have normally paid during the deferral period continues to accrue and is added to your outstanding home loan balance, to be paid after the deferred period. In turn, it means your outstanding balance will increase, and you'll pay more interest over the life of the loan.

​As an example, if you borrowed $300,000 with 20 years remaining at 3.5%, you would pay an additional $8,674 in interest and have your loan extended by 13 months. The actual cost to you will depend on your own individual circumstances.​

After the deferral period, to help keep your repayments as similar as possible to what you're currently paying, we'll extend your loan term as required.

Taking advantage of this repayment deferral will not impact your credit rating or appear on your credit file during the deferral period.

I’m thinking about restarting my repayments

FAQs

1

Can I start paying my loan again during the six-month deferral period?

You can continue to make repayments - however, the interest deferral is locked in for six months. Any extra repayments will appear as surplus in your loan account and will reduce the balance you pay interest on over the six months.

​Alternatively, if life is getting back on track and you’re able to start making your home loan repayments again, you might want to consider withdrawing your deferral and restarting your repayments. Restarting your repayments before the end of your deferral period will help reduce the amount of interest you’ll pay over the life of your loan. For more information about how to do this – and how it could save you money in the long term - please refer to the FAQ below - ‘Can I withdraw my deferral and restart my repayments?'

2

Can I withdraw my deferral and restart my repayments?

Yes, you can. If life is getting back on track and you’re able to start making your home loan repayments again, withdrawing your deferral can save you money in the long term.​

Restarting your repayments before the end of your deferral period will help reduce the amount of interest you’ll pay over the life of your loan. As a general example, if someone had 20 years remaining on a 30 year loan at an interest rate of 3.50%, here’s an estimate of the additional interest they’d pay over the life of the loan if they remained on the six-month deferral, as opposed to withdrawing their deferral after three months.*​

Original loan balance: $400,000​
Three-month deferral: The additional interest would be $9,426​
Six-month deferral: The additional interest would be $11,563.​

You can submit a request to withdraw your six-month home loan repayment deferral in Bankwest Online Banking or the Bankwest App.

In Bankwest Online Banking:​
Go to ‘Self service’ > ‘COVID-19 support’​
Log in to online banking

In the Bankwest App:​
Go to ‘Products & offers’ > ‘COVID-19 support’​
More about the Bankwest App​

You can also call us on 13 17 19

Things to keep in mind:​
If you withdraw your deferral, your repayments might be less than what you were previously paying, as your loan term was extended on the basis that you were deferring for the full six months.​

Restarting your repayments won’t reduce your extended loan term. If you want to reduce your loan term, call us on 13 17 19 instead. Reducing the loan term can reduce the interest you’ll pay over the life of the loan but will result in a higher monthly repayment than if you remained on your extended loan term.

​If you’ve previously requested direct debits to repay your home loan, these will be reinstated based on your new minimum monthly repayment amount. If your previously requested direct debits were weekly or fortnightly, you might need to make extra repayments outside of your weekly or fortnightly payment schedule to make sure your full minimum monthly repayment is paid before the next interest raising date.​

If you’ve set up repayments yourself, you’ll need to reinstate these.

​If your home loan is in arrears, you'll need to pay the arrears amount before the deferral period ends. This will avoid any adverse impact to your credit file and any collections activity.

​If you’re unsure or need help, message us in the Bankwest App or Bankwest Online Banking.

​*The above results should be used as an indication only and are based on a number of assumptions. The actual amount of increased interest payable will depend on your particular circumstances.

3

Could I withdraw my deferral and make interest only repayments?

If you have a variable rate home loan and were previously making repayments on both the principal (loan amount) and interest, an option you might like to consider is withdrawing your deferral and switching your home loan over to an interest only loan for 12 months. This could give you a little breathing space - with an interest only loan, you’ll only need to make monthly repayments of the interest amount. These smaller repayments, compared to what you were previously paying, could help free up your cash flow.​

Keep in mind, this option may not be for everyone.

Things to keep in mind:

  • Eligibility criteria applies*
  • You’ll need to withdraw your deferral to switch to interest only
  • You’ll only start to pay down the loan amount after the 12-month interest only period. Your repayments will increase in order to pay down the loan amount by the end of the loan term
  • You’ll end up paying more interest over the life of the loan since you won’t be paying down any of the loan amount during the interest only period
  • The interest only rate may be higher than what you are currently on
  • The interest only period is for 12 months
  • If you find you need support making your repayments during or after the interest only period, our Customer Assist team are here to help.


To discuss the option of withdrawing your deferral and switching to an interest only loan for 12 months, please contact us on 1300 385 837.

To discuss alternative options, please call us on 13 17 19.

*Eligibility criteria:

  • Home loan is not currently on a fixed rate
  • Home loan is not currently in arrears
  • There is a minimum of 12 months remaining on the contracted loan term at the expiry of the 12-month interest only term
  • You must have had your home loan for at least six months.

I think I’ll need additional support at the end of my deferral period – what do I do?

We’ll continue to monitor how COVID-19 is affecting our customers’ financial wellbeing and will work to support you through any financial difficulty.

If you’re still in your six-month deferral period and you think you’ll need additional support when the deferral period ends:

It’s a good idea to get in touch with us sooner rather than later – we’re here to help.

​You can submit a request in Bankwest Online Banking or the Bankwest App to talk to someone about additional support. We’ll then be in contact as soon as we can to discuss support options at the end of your deferral period and what they mean for your individual circumstances.

In Bankwest Online Banking:​
Go to ‘Self service’ > ‘COVID-19 support’​
Log in to online banking

In the Bankwest App:​
Go to ‘Products & offers’ > ‘COVID-19 support’​
More about the Bankwest App

You can also call us on 13 17 19.

If you need immediate assistance, our Customer Assist team is here to help.

If you’ve reached the end of your deferral period and you need additional support:

Please contact Bankwest to discuss the support options available and what they mean for your individual circumstances. We’re here to help you during this time.

​And if you find yourself in a position to make any extra repayments towards your home loan – however small – during your deferral period, it can help. Even small extra repayments can help to reduce the balance you pay interest on over the six month deferral and will appear as surplus in your loan account.

General FAQs

Answers at your fingertips

1

My repayment deferral is approved but interest is appearing on my account. Why?

Our SMS is your confirmation that your six-month deferral has started.

​Each time your monthly interest is calculated, we’ll increase your loan limit to ensure no repayment is required each month. This may take 24 hours, so don’t worry when the debit interest appears in your transaction listing. You’re not required to repay this during your deferral period.

2

When does the repayment deferral start?

Our SMS is your confirmation that your six month deferral has started.

You’ll need to pay any interest charged before your deferral was approved, so please check your statements or online banking and - of course - if you're experiencing difficulty, please contact us.

3

Will I need to make repayments during the six-month deferral period?

No, you aren’t required to make any repayments during the six-month deferral period. You can choose to continue making repayments - however, the interest deferral is locked in for six months. Any extra repayments will appear as surplus in your loan account and will reduce the balance you pay interest on over the six months.

4

What happens if interest rates change during my deferral period?

Interest on a variable rate loan will continue to be charged at the applicable daily interest rate, which can change from time to time.

5

What happens to my repayments at the end of my deferral period?

Your home loan repayments will start again after the six-month deferral period, and your repayments will be adjusted accordingly.​

We’ll extend your loan term by the months required to make sure repayments will remain similar to ones you’re currently paying.

​If, at the end of your deferral period, you continue to have difficulty making your repayments, you can talk through your options with us.​

How can we help?

You can message us in the Bankwest App or online banking, or you can call us – were here 24/7.