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High cost loans
High-cost, short term loans often referred to as ‘payday loans’ can cause poverty. A typical loan for $200-500 is repayable in two or four weeks with an effective interest rate of around 400% per year.
Loans are mainly given to low and fixed income borrowers to fund recurrent everyday living expenses such as food, utilities and car repairs. Repayment, usually through direct debit, takes first claim on your pay which can leave a low income borrower without enough money for everyday living.
Alternatives include: NILS (Brotherhood of St Laurence), Low-interest loans such as Step-Up Loans (operated by NAB & Good Shepherd) or Centrelink Advance, Utilities Hardship Programs, Centre Pay & Emergency Relief. (See CSF webpage No or Low Interest Loans)
Help with Bill Payments
Utility Relief Grants Scheme
Application forms are available from the Hardship Department of your utility provider.
Non-mains Utility Relief Grant Scheme can be contacted via the Concession Information line on 1800 658 521.
Ring Telstra on 1800 804 591 for more information regarding Telstra's Access for Everyone or check this page on their website.
Electricity and Gas
A current Pensioner Concession Card or Health Care Card is needed for this service.
South East Water Rates
Frankston City Council Rates
Each case is assessed separately by the Council Rates Department.
Mortgage Relief — Department of Human Services
This scheme helps people having trouble paying their home loan after an unavoidable change in their lives; e.g. income has been reduced because of short-term unemployment or sickness.
An interest free loan of up to $15,000 for up to two years may be obtained from the government. This loan is to assist with monthly payments and/or outstanding arrears. At the end of the two year period the loan must be repaid by monthly instalments.
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This page last updated: 25-May-2015