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COVID-19 FAQs

I have Voluntary Terminated my agreement with you and am waiting for my vehicle to be collected – what should I do?

We are sorry but we will not be able to collect the vehicle yet.  The company that collects vehicles for us is currently closed.  We will be back in touch as soon as we can to arrange collection. Your agreement will be placed on hold until the vehicle is collected.  You will not be charged any late payment fees during this time.  We will also ensure that there is no negative impact on your credit file.

  • You must stop using the vehicle now. Please send photographic evidence of your current mileage to agent@smfmotor.com
  • You will need to keep the vehicle safe and in your possession until we collect it.
  • You must declare your vehicle as SORN – not use and store in a secure place, off the public highway. If you are unable to do this you must continue to insure the vehicle
  • When you told us that you wanted to terminate your agreement, we wrote to you explaining how this works.   In this letter, we explained if any further payments would need to be made.  If you were told that you would need to pay further sums, you will still need to pay this.  We will contact you about this AFTER the vehicle has been collected.

Please do not worry we are monitoring the situation very closely and will be in touch once we are able to move forward with your voluntary termination. If you have any questions please see our Voluntary Termination FAQ or email adept.agent@smfmotor.com

I am worried I will not be able to afford my car payment – what should I do?

We understand you may struggle to maintain your normal monthly payments due to the current situation. We are working to help assist each customer as best as we can. In order for our payments team to be able to appropriately assess your affordability they will need some evidence of loss of earnings. If we do not receive this we will not be able to appropriately assist you. Our payments team are extremely busy at this time, if you CAN make you next payment but are unsure about future payments then please call us after this payment but no later than 5 days before the payment you are worried about.

I have been asked to provide evidence, what evidence will you accept?

You do not need to get a note from the doctor as I know this may not be available. If you have a letter from the government, or a note from your employer confirming your circumstances, these will be considered. If you are having difficulty obtaining this information, we will also accept payslips showing you are in receipt of SSP or that you have a loss of earnings. If you do not have this information please send anything you do have to our payments team at adept.agent@smfmotor.com, as they may be able to accept a range of information in order to assist you. We will hold your account for 7 days while we wait to receive this evidence. You will not be contacted during this time.

I am on a reduced income can I get a payment break?

Following confirmation that you are adversely affected by Covid-19, one option we would look at is to split the missed payment over the next few months. Depending on your circumstances we could also look at a payment break.  You may be able to defer your payments for 1 month or up to 3 months. Following the initial month we would review of your circumstances and see how we could help moving forward. We would ask you to maintain contact with us and to contact us no later than 5 days before your next payment is due. Please note, failure to contact us before your payment due date will result in us not continuing with any arrangement.

How will a payment break affect my agreement?

While we appreciate you have a number of different priorities at this time, we would like to remind you that your finance is secured against the vehicle and as such the asset can depreciate in value over time. In order to protect your long term affordability we would only look to reduce payment or hold payments if necessary.  A payment break may affect any future Voluntary Termination of your agreement, as you will have paid 50% of the total balance later than expected. A payment break will also extend the agreement meaning it will be longer and end later than stated on the credit agreement however, you will not be charged additional interest for this extra time.

How will this affect my credit score?

If a payment break is applied to your account, it will record with the Credit Reference Agencies as a static balance and not in arrears. The Credit Reference Agencies will use the term “emergency payment freeze”.

The Credit Reference Agencies cannot guarantee that this will not impact your ability to get future credit, as different lenders will have different policies. It does, however, ensure that your current credit data position is maintained or frozen for the duration of the emergency payment freeze period.

What will happen to my account once this is all over?

If you have had a payment break applied to the account following a monthly review of your circumstances we would add the ‘missed payment’ on to the end of your agreement effectively extending the term. Following the final discussion, to check your circumstances, we would look to reinstate your direct debit and continue with your agreement as normal.

What is a Settlement Figure?

At any time during your agreement you can request a settlement figure. This is the sum needed to pay off the agreement in a lump sum resulting in you owning the vehicle outright. With every settlement figure there is be a rebate of interest calculated. Settlement figures are valid for 1 month after the date of the request, or up until your next due date if specified. We then calculate your settlement figure by taking the current capital element of the balance outstanding, adding the interest due up to the agreed settlement date, the rest therefore being rebated.

The settlement figure includes all fees and incurred charges throughout your agreement. If settled by the agreed upon date the vehicle ownership will transfer to yourself once the funds have cleared and the account closed.

Can I Voluntary Surrender my vehicle?

You have the right to voluntary surrender your vehicle at any point during your agreement. The process is as follows: You will need to submit in writing that you wish to voluntary surrender your vehicle in its current condition. You will then receive instructions from us on where the car will be sold. The site in which the car is dropped off will be specified by us (within reason to your location) or can be collected but a collection fee of up to £200 will be incurred. This fee will be added to the remaining balance on your account.

Once the car is sold at auction, the sales price will be deducted from your outstanding balance on the agreement. After this an affordable arrangement will be agreed upon to settle the outstanding amount.

Can I Part Exchange?

To part exchange your vehicle you will first need to contact us to obtain a settlement figure, this is the sum needed to clear your current finance agreement. Once you have this figure you can then approach any dealership or car sales garage that offers part exchange and sell the current vehicle to them for the price of the settlement figure, which they will need to pay directly to us.

If there is a difference between the price the dealership, or garage, will offer for your car and the price of the settlement figure then you will be liable for that sum. The shortfall will need to be cleared before being accepted by ourselves for more finance, as we do not accept applications with negative equity.

I have a new agreement and want to know when my first payment is due?

You can find the due date of your payments in your Welcome Pack and we will give you a call to confirm this information.  First payments must be made within 45 days of you signing your credit agreement.  The first payment to your agreement must be made from the verified bank account that you provided us with on your application for credit.

I would like to make a change to my Payment Date

If you would like to change the date on which your payment is due to be taken, you can ask us to change it to a more convenient date.  We don’t charge you to make a change but there are a few restrictions:

  • You may request a payment date change as many times as you wish, however payments must be made within the calendar month they are due
  • Any change must be requested at least 5 days before the next payment is due to allow us time to process your request

If you would like to request a change to your payment date please click the button below and complete and submit the form.

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I have changed my bank account for payments, what do I need to do?

Please let us know your new bank details as soon as possible so we can continue to receive your payments and prevent your agreement falling into arrears.  You can let us know by calling us on 01244 200746 and we will be happy to set up the new direct debit over the phone.

How can I update my personal details?

The accuracy and security of your personal data is really important to us.  We can make changes to your contact details and address online but changes of name will mean that you need to write to us with a little more information.

To advise us of a change of address or contact numbers please click the button below

Changes requested

Please complete for any changes you would like us to make



Unfortunately, we are unable to accept a name change request online.  Please write to us at the address below advising us of your old and new name and providing a copy of any relevant supporting documentation such as a Deed Poll notification, marriage certificate or Decree Nisi/Absolute.  Please do not send us original documentation.  We also require an example of your old and new signature for our records.

Can I pay a lump sum off my agreement and what effect will it have?

You can partially or fully settle your agreement at any time by letting us know that you wish to do so and paying off some or all of the amount that you owe. It is possible to reduce the length of your agreement in this way. The minimum lump sum that we can accept is £100. Please click on the button below to obtain a quote for full settlement or to make a partial settlement.

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My vehicle has been stolen – what should I do?

The first thing you should do is to contact the police and report the theft so that you can obtain a crime number which will be required by your insurance company prior to settling any claim.  Until the insurance company has resolved the matter you will need to carry on making your normal monthly payments and it may also be necessary to continue to pay the difference between the insurance settlement and any remaining outstanding monies owed against the agreement to settle the account in full.

My vehicle was in an accident and has been written off – what should I do?

Until the insurance company has resolved the matter you will need to continue making your normal monthly payments and it may also be necessary to continue to pay the difference between the insurance settlement and any remaining outstanding monies owed against the agreement to settle the account in full.

Can I voluntary terminate my Hire Purchase agreement?

Under section 99 of the Consumer Credit act 1974, you have the right to a voluntary termination of your agreement with us once you are financially half way through. In order to do this the car must be in a good and saleable condition, as per section 100(4) of the Consumer Credit Act 1974. Clause 5.2 of the Hire Purchase Agreement states that ‘good repair and condition’ includes a valid MOT, V5, Service History and at least 1 key.

If there are any repairs needed on the vehicle you may be liable for these rectification costs. We will take into consideration general wear and tear against the age of the vehicle using the CAP HPI guide. The assessment of the vehicle will be done by an independent third party at the auction site.

The site in which the car is dropped off will be specified by us (within reason to your location) or can be collected but a collection fee of up to £200 will be incurred. This fee will need to be paid in advance.

To begin the process you will need to let us know in writing that you wish to voluntary terminate. From there you will be sent an information pack via post, unless you specify that an email is preferable. In the pack, it will contain all the information on the next steps which includes our G3 Self-Appraisal App instructions, the returning of the vehicle and the costed appraisal.

Voluntary Termination – Self appraisal information

I am experiencing financial difficulties, can I reduce my repayments?

We always consider requests for reduced payments on an individual basis.

We are happy to consider reducing your repayments and whilst we look at every case on an individual basis, there are a number of factors we take into consideration before any decision is made. These factors include:

  • Type of Agreement
  • Reason for financial difficulties
  • Affordability

Printable Income & Expenditure form

Can I nominate someone else to talk to you about my agreement?

Our responsibilities under the Data Protection laws mean that we are only allowed to speak to you about your finance agreements. However, if you would like to nominate a third party to speak on your behalf you can arrange this with us.

 

There are a number of ways you can nominate a third party. These include:

  • Completing a Third Party Authorisation form. You can either email it to us at collections.admin@smfmotor.com or you can post it to us at the address on the website.
  • Over the telephone
  • Sending in an original, or certified copy of a Power of Attorney

There is something else I need help with

If you need help with something that is not listed in our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) please use this area to let us know how we can help you.

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