A major bank has announced new cost-of-living support for customers who are struggling with debt.

Natwest has confirmed it will be extending the amount of time customers have to pay back money on a loan or an overdraft if they have missed several payments.

From next month, the time that people have to repay their debt will increase from 18 months to 24 months.

A statement said: “For personal customers, the bank is committed to supporting those in financial difficulty with interventions designed to create breathing space and alleviate pressure.

Basingstoke Gazette:

“From early February this year, where customers have missed several payments on an unsecured debt such as a loan or overdraft, the bank will extend the time for them to repay their debt from 18 to 24 months, giving them more time and flexibility.”

The bank has also announced £5.7million in hardship funding to charities and partner organisations, including £1m to the Trussell Trust to further support the Help through Hardship scheme.

Alison Rose, Chief Executive, NatWest Group added: “We are committed to listening to our customers and partners to understand where they face the most significant challenges, in turn delivering tailored support that provides help where it is needed most.

“Over the past year, including today’s new funding, we’ve provided around £40m of cost-of-living support to our personal customers and community partners.

“Whilst we are not yet seeing significant increases in defaults or people in arrears, this new package of funding and measures is designed to provide on the ground support to communities, breathing space for customers in difficulty and cashback to businesses to offset continued high energy and fuel costs.

“We know that everyone’s situation is unique, and I encourage customers who are facing difficulty to get in touch with us at the first available opportunity, where one of our highly trained colleagues will be ready to discuss all the options available to help them through this challenging period.”