Hardship support for businesses in debt
26 October 2020
If you’re a business owner, managing risk is part of what you do. And though you work hard to eliminate or reduce it, sometimes there are events — such as bushfires, global pandemics and recessions — that are difficult to plan for.
So, how can you best manage your finances during times of hardship and where can you seek support?
How to manage business debt in times of financial hardship
Take a look at your finances
If your business is experiencing hardship, or you suspect it may in the near future, it’s important to assess your finances. Include your debts and any money owing to you.
For a helping hand, consider getting in touch with a financial counsellor. Financial counsellors are independent professionals who can provide you with advice, advocacy and information relating to your experience of hardship.
There are several free financial counselling services available across Australia, such as:
- Australian Banking Association – 1800 560 685
- MoneySmart – find a financial counsellor near you
- National Debt Helpline – 1800 007 007
Contact your bank
Australian banks have hardship teams at the ready to support you when you need it most. And though it may be difficult, it’s important to let your bank know you’re experiencing financial difficulty as soon as you can.
Suncorp Bank is no different! If you’re experiencing hardship, call our friendly Customer Assist team on 1800 225 223 (Monday–Friday, 8:30am–5pm AEST). We may be able to help.
Chase up money that’s owed to you
Contact customers who are late with, or haven’t made, their payments. Remember to discuss the date you need the payment to be made by or develop a payment schedule if they won’t be able to meet it.
Have a look at Business Victoria’s debt recovery templates if you’d like a hand with this process.
Prioritise paying back debt where you can
If you’re in a position to pay off some of your business’ debt, doing so could ease some of the pressure. Begin by identifying the debt you can afford to pay off now, what you would prefer to pay later, and whether you’re able to go on a payment plan for other debts.
This is where having a detailed budget can come in handy. If you need to create or update yours, business.gov.au has some great tips on getting started.
How Suncorp can support your business
If you’re a Suncorp customer experiencing financial difficulty, the sooner you let us know about your situation, the more we may be able to support you. We work with our eligible small and medium-sized business customers on a case-by-case basis to provide confidential and tailored support.
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The information is intended to be of a general nature only and any advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it. We do not accept any legal responsibility for any loss incurred as a result of reliance upon it – please make your own enquiries.