Covid-19: Immediate Financial Steps to Take

last updated April 2 2020

The focus should be on;

  • Maintenance of cashflow.
  • Given that many will not be trading for the next 4 weeks, quickly finding and creating cash reserves so that overhead costs can be paid through that time.

Steps to take;

  1. If not done so already, apply for the government wage subsidy – including your own wage. It only takes about 5 minutes.
  2. Phone your Bank and ask for;
    • Temporary overdraft for 90 days.
    • All facilities to be placed on interest only.
    • Some people are requesting mortgage holidays - these are poorly labelled. What happens in reality, is that the payments are accrued, or shifted to the end of the loan term.
    • A better approach to a mortgage holdiay is to ask for a loan to give you a lump of cash that can then use to pay your loan for the next 3 to 9 months.

If you are not getting support, “tell them that you are experiencing financial hardship and want to know what is available to you under financial hardship framework”. Lenders have legal responsibilities in this area.


  1. Contact your other lenders such as Asset Finance/Hire Purchase  providers, also ask them to put your loans on interest only for 90 days.
  2. Keep yourself safe: The alternative lending market has leapt into life – some of these are predatory in their behaviour. Avoid them if you can.
  3. Activate Kiwisaver reserves: If you are experiencing financial hardship, you can get yoru Kiwisaver fudns paid out. Talk Directly with your Kiwisaver provider.
  4. If you still do not think you can get through consider a Business Finance Guarantee. Its early days, but the general principle is here:
  5. Watch: Further government steps may continue to be announced.

Work with your lenders and give them what they want even if you don’t agree. They are people like you who are under pressure, are working long hours and have families in the background that they are trying to look after too. Looking after them will go a long way.