ABN AMRO offers an extensive programme to help customers with payment arrears. For example, the bank proactively contacts customers with high mortgage costs, and has set up a network of 200 financial coaches all across the Netherlands to help customers with payment arrears. Also, in 2009 the bank set up a Mortgage Care Team (HCT) to help customers who are at risk of running into financial problems. In 2013, the HCT approached over 50,000 customers and had discussions with 25,000 of them about their financial situation.
ABN AMRO advises customers to contact the bank as soon as possible, and not wait until the arrears spiral out of control. The earlier the Mortgage Care Team is called in, the better they can help the customer. Each year, the Mortgage Care Team helps out some 7,500 customers with an intensive coaching programme. The ABN AMRO Mortgage Care Team consists of 30 employees.
In touch with tens of thousands of customers
ABN AMRO actively approaches customers. For example, the bank contacts customers with potential negative equity and dialogues with them about possible solutions. In 2013, over 50,000 customers were contacted. Additionally, ABN AMRO has a team of over 200 ‘budget coaches’ who help customers to put their finances in order.
No big rise in payment arrears
Partially due to ABN AMRO’s proactive approach, there has been no big rise in payment arrears among its customers. Thanks to the bank’s primary focus on taking good care of the customer’s financial situation, arrears are often averted.
Arrears mostly short-term
Of all customers who have fallen into arrears for the first time, 97 per cent are able to catch up within 3 months. So on a total portfolio of 900,000 mortgages, only a very limited percentage of customers (0.5%) has arrears of over three months. Only for a very limited group do long-term arrears lead to private sale (0,15%) or auctioning (0.05%) of their homes. Chiefly to blame for these situations are divorce, and (less frequently) unemployment and unhealthy financial management.