TSB have contacted me to explain the steps they are taking to support suppliers, business customers, and personal banking customers. I have outlined these below.
TSB will ensure that all of its smallest suppliers will be paid within just 10 days of submitting an invoice. The move will apply to all companies that supply goods and services to the bank, even if the contract allows it to pay over a longer period. This will help provide cash flow certainty for TSB’s suppliers. TSB has contracts with over 400 suppliers of which around half would be classified as SMEs. Currently we pay over 95% of our suppliers within one month and on average TSB suppliers receive payment within 14 days, so by speeding up the process at our end it will help cashflow at theirs.
Alongside ensuring prompt payments TSB is reaching out to all of our small suppliers to discuss specific challenges they face.
TSB will participate in the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme and we’re also providing other lending facilities and support to our business customers including waiving arrangement fees.
Alongside this, TSB is the only bank to offer a Lending Pledge, which pre-dates Coronavirus. The pledge was developed in 2019 with the support of stakeholders including the Federation of Small Businesses and the APPG on Fair Business Banking. As part of the pledge TSB has committed to:
- Be fair and transparent in everything we do, keeping the customer informed as to the course of action we are taking and why.
- Give customers reasonable time to return their business to health.
- Not raise loan margins on existing facilities if a business enters into financial difficulty.
- Not default a business if it is up-to-date on its loan payments, but a valuation change impacts a covenant.
- Not demand full repayment or remove an overdraft unless a business has breached our terms of lending.
- Not run our business support unit as a profit centre and not incentivise our partners for additional income earned on accounts in business support.
Supporting vulnerable and elderly customers
TSB are contacting their known vulnerable customers to find out if they need support and to check whether anybody else can help assist them with their banking. This includes letting them know the ways they can continue to access their accounts including internet and mobile services, using our telephone banking or using Post Office branches to pay in or withdraw money. We plan to do the same for customers over 70 that we know use our branches.
We are also using our own social media channels to share advice from Citizens Advice to help as many people as possible access this information.
If you are aware of any constituents who are TSB customers and are in need of additional support or reassurance, please let me know and I will ensure they have been contacted.
Victims of fraud
TSB are aware that the Coronavirus situation is being exploited by fraudsters to target individuals. TSB is the only bank to offer a Fraud Refund Guarantee which protects our five million customers against all types of transactional fraud losses where they are an innocent victim of this increasingly frequent and sophisticated crime. As such our customers remain protected in the event that they are the victim of fraud, whether it is related to Coronavirus or not and will receive a full refund.
TSB are also sharing guidance with their customers, on their own websites, social media and in the press, to help people avoid becoming the victims of fraud.
Personal banking customers
TSB offer customers the following support:
- Mortgage customers
- Customers with a TSB mortgage may apply for a repayment holiday for up to three months without impacting their credit score. This was introduced after the flooding that affected communities over the winter and has now been extended to those affected by Coronavirus.
- Savings customers
- Customers holding Fixed Rate Bonds can close their accounts to gain early access to their money. Customers will also be able to access savings in Fixed Rate Cash ISAs and the early withdrawal charge will not apply during this period.
- Credit card customers
- Customers can request an emergency credit limit increase. Subject to status and application.
- Current account customers
- Personal current account customers can now withdraw up to £500 from UK cash machines.
- Personal loan customers
Personal loan customers may apply for a repayment holiday to provide short term relief on their outgoings. This has been a feature since TSB returned to the high street almost seven years ago. Repayment holidays are subject to approval.