Do you have a cheque account? And are you considering applying for an overdraft? First, you need to make sure you know how it really works.
There are important questions you should ask your bank, to ensure you are making the right decision. Ryan Prozesky, FNB Consumer Core Banking CEO, says an overdraft is an important credit facility to help you manage your personal cash flow in the event that your bank account runs out of funds. It can come in handy to ensure that important debit orders, such as a home loan or insurance premiums, are always honoured, when you use up all the funds in your cheque account, due to unforeseen expenses. Below are key questions should ask about an overdraft facility:
- Do you qualify by default as a cheque account holder? – The approval of an overdraft facility is subject to an affordability and credit assessment. The assessment determines whether the bank approves the application, as well as the size of the credit limit. However, banks often pre-approve selected customers with a good credit profile to make it easier for them to access the overdraft facility.
- Will I need a separate account? – The facility is linked to your cheque account, meaning that you dont need to track or manage the overdraft in a separate account.
- When do I start paying interest? – You will only start paying interest from the time you start using the facility. The interest will only be charged on the amount you have used.
- How do I pay for the amount I owe? – The balance you owe will be reduced whenever your salary is paid into your bank account. However, the balance increases as you use the facility.
- Can I settle my overdraft earlier? – When you deposit funds into your account the bank will deduct the amount you owe as well as the interest due.
- What happens if I no longer earn a salary? – You can take out credit insurance to cover the debt, in the unfortunate event that anything happens to them.
If you fall into financial difficulty, contact your bank to make a suitable repayment arrangement. Many banks have the ability to gradually reduce your overdraft limit overtime to help structure a repayment plan.
Source: FNB. Image: Pixabay