If you’re a New South Wales business affected by the recent floods, there is financial help available. This is what you need to know.
By Paul Rattray
There are a number of grants available for sole traders, small businesses, not-for-profit organisaitons and primary producers who have been affected by the recent rain bombs and floods across the state. The NSW Government grant also extends to small businesses who may not actually be located in disaster areas, but do a significant amount of business in the affected area.
We’re encouraging clients to do some research and see what financial assistance is going to be the most beneficial. Along with the government grants, there is financial assistance available from two of the biggest lenders, and Telstra. All electricity suppliers and financial institutions will have avenues for short-term financial relief, even though only a few of them are offering specific grants.
If you’re an affected business and you have received financial help, then make sure that you keep impeccable financial records – it is likely that you could be audited down the track.
If you’re in a situation where your business needs financial help beyond the immediate grants and other help available, we are here to help. Our team of accountants, tax specialists, financial planners and business mentors can help you with advice across the board – whether you’re trying to get back on your feet, or, even if you’re considering declaring insolvency.
While we like to be optimistic and hope the latter is not the case, we’re also realistic – small businesses in New South Wales have been through an incredibly tough few years.
It’s also important, particularly if you are a small business, that you know how to protect yourself as a creditor if a business you conduct business with declares bankruptcy in the weeks or months ahead.
As of March 11, Telstra is offering grants up to $10,000 for businesses seriously affected, it is also providing debt relief and assistance for businesses under serious financial duress. You can find out more here.
The Commonwealth Bank is also offering businesses directly impacted by floods, grants of up to $10,000. These are also available to organisations which are helping in relief and recovery efforts, meaning that your business is involved directly in helping the community to get back on it’s feet. Find out more here.
The bank has also announced that businesses can apply to defer loan repayments or a refund of merchant fees or gain early access to term deposit accounts. It is also offering extended credit (subjected to approval) for credit card holders and emergency loans, also subject to approval. To find out more, visit here.
Similarly ANZ’s Disaster Relief Package is available for its personal and business customers affected by the floods — including short term payment relief on home loans, credit cards, personal loans and some business loans, as well as no fees in some cases for businesses wanting to restructure loans or access term deposits. For more information, visit the website.
The NSW Government has announced a Storm and Flood Disaster Recovery Small Business Grant, available to small businesses, sole traders and not-for-profit organisations. Grants of up to $50,000 are available to those directly impacted, and the money is intended to help businesses to re-open and will be able to be used for cleanups, repairs, leasing temporary premises, and obtaining vehicles.
Small business which aren’t located in disaster areas, but regularly conduct businesses in these areas can also apply. For more information, visit here.
Grants of up to $75,000 are available for primary producers – these are being managed by the Rural Assistance Authority. You can apply here.
We recommend that you apply on behalf of your business so that you can be the single point of contact. You should also be wary right now, of scammers – there are plenty out there, who unfortunately want to take advantage of people at their most vulnerable. Check, check and check again before you hand over money, personal information or passwords.
But if we can help in any way, please give us a call.