ASB extends its Christchurch rebuild package

Tuesday 28 June 2011, 7:13PM


ASB has today announced further customer support initiatives under its Christchurch Rebuild package to include additional concessions for homeowners in the Government designated ‘Red Zone’.

“Concessions for ASB Home Loan and Personal Lending customers were introduced immediately following the September 2010 and February 2011 earthquakes,” says ASB’s CEO, Barbara Chapman.

“ASB’s $250 million investment package to kick-start the Christchurch rebuild was then launched with the Prime Minister on 26 March. Following the Government’s announcements last week ASB provided further concessions for ASB homeowners living in the designated Red Zone.”

“These new provisions now take our rebuild package a step further by offering immediate bridging finance assistance to those Red Zone homeowners waiting for their payouts but wanting to purchase a new property now,” Ms Chapman says.

Further Concessions for Home Loan Customers

To further support both existing and new home loan customers whose properties have now been designated as being in the Red Zone, ASB will offer a variable rate home loan with a one year interest discount of 2 percent per annum off the normal rate. This currently equates to 3.75 percent per annum and is available until 31 December 2012.

The following previously announced concessions will also continue:

- no early repayment adjustments if fixed rate mortgages are repaid early;
- zero application fee for new home or residential property purchases; and
- $500 towards professional fees related to the purchase.

Bridging Finance for Purchase of new home or residential section

We recognise that some homeowners do not want to wait for the payout on their Red Zone property to be made. As part of the concessionary lending package above, ASB will offer bridging finance, including a six month repayment holiday. This will benefit those people wanting to purchase a new property now.

Enhanced Deposit Offer

For homeowners who would prefer to wait before purchasing a new property, as from 30 June 2011, ASB will offer a 4 percent per annum enhanced interest rate on funds from the Government payout that are deposited into a special ASB Christchurch Retail Call Account. All Red Zone homeowners are eligible for this special offer, which will be available until 31 December 2012.

As announced last week, there will also be no break fee charged on term deposits used to top up purchase amounts for a new home property.

The $250 million investment programme to support the Christchurch rebuild is still available and to date ASB has:

- helped with zero percent or low interest lending of $220m to more than 2,600 homeowners and business customers significantly impacted by the earthquakes;
- been in discussions with over 100 businesses looking to invest or extend their activities in Christchurch;
- received over 120 applications for our ASB Christchurch Community Groups Assistance Grants.

Ms Chapman confirmed ASB’s confidence in the recovery of the city and the local economy. “From day one ASB has been committed to stepping up to help its customers and the Christchurch community in a meaningful way. We remain focused on stimulating the economy in Canterbury, through local businesses and community groups,” says Ms Chapman.

“Our ongoing support will help people, businesses and communities to re-establish themselves, while continuing to encourage new businesses and employment opportunities in Canterbury,” she says.