We know a time like this can raise questions and other needs. Northshore Community Church wants to help however we can, if you have a need, you’d like to talk to someone for support, or you would like prayer for something, here’s how you can reach us:
Text myprayer to 97000
Call 425-216-4477. Leave a voicemail and someone from Northshore’s team will get back to you.
As the spread of COVID-19 continues to impact many individuals and families, we want to help. This resource has been created to help those who are experiencing financial hardship.
Currently, there are a number of measures being considered to help families financially over the coming weeks. For a summary of those items, see the “National Relief Measures” and “Local Relief Measures” sections below. People who anticipate having trouble making payments should review the “Steps To Take” list below. They should also seek financial assistance options in their areas (see “Financial Assistance Resources” section below).
If you have other great resources to contribute, please share them with us here.
Steps to Take if You're Concerned About Paying Your Bills
- If you haven’t looked at a budget in a while, now’s the time to do so. Some great free apps for putting a budget together include Every Dollar and Mint.
- Get clarity from your income sources as to what the reality will look like over the coming weeks.
- Cut spending to bare necessities. If you can’t pay all of your bills, Dave Ramsey recommends you spend your money on these four items first and in this order: food, utilities, shelter, transportation. If you still need help, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Northshore Community Church and ask about our Compassion Fund. To do so, call 425-216-4403 and leave a voicemail.
- If you’re still not able to cover all of your expenses, identify payments that can be deferred:
- Call creditors to explain your situation. You can ask for temporary relief on your monthly payments. If you offer to still send some money, even if it’s a smaller amount than your typical payment, they might be more willing to work with you.
- If you have federal student loans, you can forbear (interest accrues) or defer (interest doesn’t accrue on subsidized federal loans) your loan payments.
- If you’re paying extra on debt(s) right now and have less than one to two months’ worth of expenses in an emergency fund, it might not be a bad idea to temporarily stop extra payments and then restart them once things settle down.
- Enroll for health insurance, if you can.
- Use this week to get a game plan together and gather information, as there may be more changes coming.
National Relief Measures
National Relief Measures (Updated: 3/29)
- Free COVID-19 testing to anyone, regardless of insurance status.
- The tax-filing deadline has been moved from April 15 to July 15 for both Federal and Georgia.
- Send stimulus checks directly to American households. Use this calculator to estimate how much your family will receive.
- Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Ally Bank have all said that if customers are having trouble making payments on loans (mortgages, credit cards, personal loans, auto loans, etc.) to call them to find out what options are available.
- Foreclosures and evictions will be suspended for 60 days on all HUD-owned properties and mortgages backed by the FHA, Fannie Mae, or Freddie Mac. Additionally, homeowners are eligible for a forbearance plan to reduce or suspend their mortgage payments for up to 12 months. Borrowers should contact their loan servicer to ask about this.
- Suspend Federal student loan payments through September 30 with no accrual of interest on these loans. Borrowers should contact their loan servicer to ask about this.
- Individuals that apply for unemployment insurance will receive an additional $600/week for up to four months on top of what they would normally receive from unemployment benefits. Self-employed workers and independent contractors are eligible for this program.
- Emergency paid leave for up to three months if you are sick, quarantined, or taking care of a sick family member. It would be 2/3 of your normal salary and doesn’t apply if you receive unemployment compensation (employers with fewer than 500 employees).
- Paid sick leave for two weeks (employers with fewer than 500 employees).
- $350 billion small business loan program to provide companies with 500 or fewer employees access to funds to continue paying employees.
- For funds taken out of retirement accounts like 401(k)s or IRAs, the 10 percent tax penalty is waived for people who are experiencing economic hardships.
Local Relief Measures
- Gov. Jay Inslee Wednesday announced a 30-day statewide moratorium on evictions for residential tenants
- Seattle Public Utilities and Seattle City Light will keep utility services on during the COVID-19 Civil Emergency in Seattle. This will provide immediate utility relief for customers, both residential and commercial, financially impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Effective immediately, all SPU and SCL customers can set up deferred payment plans if their financial stability has been jeopardized by COVID-19. Utility service will stay on as their deferred payment plans are developed and implemented. In addition to encouraging customers to set up payment plans, SPU and SCL have created a Utility Discount Program (UDP) self-certification form for income-eligible customers.
- Puget Sound Energy – No late fees or shut-offs during the coronavirus crisis. The company launched a new energy assistance portal to improve access to funds available to low-income customers. The PSE Foundation, a nonprofit operating independently of PSE but helping the communities PSE serves, is donating $250,000 to support relief efforts in the community through the Seattle Foundation as well as donating to food banks to cover emergency preparations.
- Snohomish Public Utilities will not disconnect for late payments during coronavirus outbreak.
- Xfinity will not disconnect or add late fees for customers who contact the company. Customers will have unlimited data for 60 days, and Xfinity Wi-Fi hotspots will be free for anyone. New customers will also get access to 60 days of free Internet Essentials service (25 Mbps).
- AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint will not terminate or add late fees for the next 60 days. Public Wi-Fi hotspots are also open and customers will receive unlimited Internet data.
- T-Mobile is offering unlimited data to all current customers who have plans with data for the next 60 days. It will also provide additional data to mobile hotspot users.
- CenturyLink is waiving late fees, unlimited data and no disconnects for 60 days.
- Spectrum Mobile – no late fees, free wifi hotspots, no disconnects for 60 days.
- Go to: How to file an unemployment claim with the Washington State Employment Security Department.
- For people that don’t qualify for traditional unemployment, like freelancers, here’s another option.