Singapore

Special Financial Relief Programme - Mortgages FAQ

1. What is this relief measure that banks and finance companies are offering for mortgages?

This relief measure forms part of the relief package that MAS, in collaboration with the financial industry, has put forth to help individuals affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The initiative offered by RHB Singapore is intended to help borrowers facing difficulties meeting repayments under their existing mortgage loans, by allowing them to defer repayment of the principal or both principal and interest up to 31 December 2020.

2. How can a mortgage repayment deferment help me?

If you are facing cash flow constraints and have difficulties repaying your mortgage during this period, you can consider applying for a mortgage repayment deferment to lower your monthly debt payments up to 31 December 2020. Regular mortgage instalments will resume after the deferment period.

Relief for mortgages of residential properties


3. What are the features of a mortgage repayment deferment for mortgages for residential properties?

You can choose to defer up to 31 December 2020, either:

A.the principal portion of the monthly instalment, while continuing to pay the monthly interest; or
B.the full monthly instalment. Interest will continue to accrue on the principal amount deferred, but no interest-on-interest will be charged during this deferment period.

You can also choose to extend the tenure of your mortgage by the corresponding period, to lower the monthly instalment amount following resumption of regular payments.

However, you should keep in mind that deferring payments and extending your tenure would result in you will be paying more interest in total. Therefore, it is advisable to only defer repayments if necessary.

Before applying for the deferment, we encourage you to discuss with your relationship manager or our Client Services representatives on your available options.

In the case of a deferment, do take the time to look through the factsheet that would be provided to you. The factsheet would reflect the Monthly repayment amount before the deferment period, Monthly repayment amount during the deferment period, Monthly repayment amount after the deferment period and Total interest accrued during the deferment period.

Illustrative Example:
For a mortgage with $200,000 outstanding and a remaining tenure of 20 years, assuming a 2% interest rate, the extra interest cost over the remaining tenure will be about:

  • $1,300 for a principal-only deferment period for 9 months, and $2,930 if the tenure is also extended by 9 months.
  • $1,920 for a principal and interest deferment period for 9 months, and $3,570 if the tenure is also extended by 9 months.
4. Why is the interest on my principal amount not waived during the deferment period?

This is a special relief that banks and finance companies have collectively agreed to, and introduced, to help individuals who are facing cash flow difficulties with their mortgage repayments during the COVID-19 pandemic period.

Interest would accrue as the banks and finance companies continue to bear the risks of lending. However, if you choose to defer the full monthly instalment, interest-on-interest will be waived during the deferment period.

5. Will my mortgage automatically get a repayment deferment?

No. Repayment deferments are not automatic as individuals will incur higher total interest costs and not all individuals need it. If you need a mortgage repayment deferment, you would have to submit an application to us.

6. How do I know if I am eligible for a repayment deferment? If I am currently on a Debt Reduction Plan (DRP) for my mortgage, can my repayments under the DRP be deferred too?

You are eligible if you have a residential mortgage, whether it is a housing loan or a mortgage equity withdrawal loan, and your monthly instalments are not more than 90 days past due.

Repayments under your Debt Reduction Plan that is taken in connection with your residential mortgage can be similarly deferred.

7. Can I get a repayment deferment for my overseas property loan?

If you are facing difficulties repaying your overseas property loans, you can speak to our loan officers or Client Services representatives.

Relief for mortgages of industrial and commercial properties


8. Can I get a repayment deferment for my industrial or commercial property loan?

You can choose to opt for a deferment Principal with or without extension of loan tenure by the corresponding deferment period. The deferment period is up to 31 December 2020 for:

  • Purchase loans and mortgage equity withdrawal loans, including Debt Reduction Plans
  • Refinanced and repriced industrial and commercial property loans

The deferment will not cause the loan to be reflected as a restructured loan in the individual’s credit bureau report. This will be an Opt-in basis, for individuals with loan repayments that are current (i.e. no outstanding repayment) as at 1 February 2020.

You can also choose to defer Principal and Interest payments with or without extension of loan tenure by the corresponding deferment period. The deferment period is up to 31 December 2020.

For both options, interest will accrue only on the deferred principal amount i.e. interest-on-interest is waived.

Eligibility

  • Opt-in basis, for individual landlords with loan repayments that are current (i.e. no outstanding repayment) as at 1 February 2020 and have tenants who had availed themselves to the rental waiver or repayment schedule provided for under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) (Amendment) Bill.
  • Individual landlords should provide IRAS’ notice of cash grant1 , the relevant tenancy/lease agreements and a declaration of the relief to be provided to their tenants in their applications to banks and finance companies.
  • Granted expeditiously in response to individual landlords’ application, but requests may be denied in exceptional cases.
  • Individual landlords are not subjected to the total debt servicing ratio when applying for deferment.

1 As part of the disbursement of Government relief under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) (Amendment) Bill, IRAS will issue a notice of cash grant to two groups of property owners:

(i).those with SME tenants
(ii).SME property owners who run a trade or business on their own property
9. Is my investment property loan eligible for the waiver of TDSR and MSR when I apply for refinancing or repricing?

Individuals with investment property loans that are out of the lock-in period can apply to refinance or reprice their loans, without being subject to the total debt servicing ratio (TDSR) and mortgage servicing ratio (MSR), up to 31 December 2020.

Consequently, individuals who do not meet TDSR and MSR will not need to commit to a debt repayment plan to repay 3% of their outstanding loan amount over 3 years.

Individuals can rely on this exemption to refinance or reprice their loans to lower their monthly payments. Any subsequent application to defer mortgage repayments will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

If the loan is still within the lock-in period, contractual penalties may apply.

10. My mortgage is more than 90 days past due as at 6 April 2020. Can my bank or finance company still help?

Please contact us at 1800 323 0100 to discuss suitable repayment plans or debt restructuring.

11. What are the costs of taking up a repayment deferment? What should I be aware of before taking up a repayment deferment?

The total interest cost of the mortgage will be higher if you take up the repayment deferment. To assist you in making a decision, you will be given an illustration of the instalments during and after the deferment period, and the estimated increase in total interest cost.

12. Do I need to meet TDSR/MSR in order to get a repayment deferment?

No. You do not need to meet TDSR/MSR to be eligible for the repayment deferment.

13. How do I apply for a repayment deferment? Do I need to visit the branch to sign the documents after approval?

The application period is from 6 April 2020 to 31 December 2020. You can apply at any time within the application period if you meet the eligibility criteria by calling us at 1800 323 0100 to find out more on the application process.

14. When will my application be approved?

The actual approval process will differ from financial institution to financial institution, depending on various factors including the volume of applications received. Nevertheless, financial institutions should generally approve your application expeditiously as long as you meet the eligibility criteria.

15. Will taking up a repayment deferment affect my credit score?

No, the deferment will not result in the loan being classified as a restructured loan for the purposes of credit bureau reporting.

16. I received an email/call/SMS saying that my internet banking log-in details are needed to apply for a repayment deferment. Why is this needed?

You should make your application directly to us through our Customer Contact Centre at 1800 323 0100.

We will never ask for your credit/debit card details, password, or OTP, nor request for a fund transfer to be made to another account. You should verify any unsolicited calls, messages, or emails directly with us through our Customer Contact Centre at 1800 323 0100.

17. What will happen if the Covid-19 situation does not improve by 31 December 2020? Will banks and finance companies extend the period of the repayment deferment?

MAS and the financial industry are monitoring the situation closely, and will assess if any additional measures are needed then.

RHB SPECIAL FINANCIAL RELIEF PROGRAMME 2020 (“SFRP”) APPLICATION FORM FOR CONSUMER LOANS

Please complete and submit the application form below. We will contact you within 7 working days.
Full name
Contact number
Email address
Tick Type of loan requesting for relief
If you have more than one loan with us, list loan account number or the property address