Money problems? Let’s explore a scenario where your fridge breaks down and you need a new one. Money is tight and you don’t know how you can afford a new fridge. Below are some options that you can explore, ranging from a low or no interest loan to support from agencies like Kildonan Uniting Care, the Victorian Government and even some electricity retailers.
If you are worried about paying bills, then contact a financial counsellor immediately. You can call COTA on 9665 2100 and ask to speak with the COTA Vic Financial Counsellor. This is a free, confidential service available on Thursday and Friday by appointment. Alternatively, you can call the National Debt Hotline on 1800 007 007.
- NILS: NILS (No Interest Loan Scheme) provides small loans up to $1,500. The loans can only be used for specific purposes and eligibility criteria apply.
- StepUP Loans: These loans are available for low income earners. Currently the maximum amount you can borrow is $3,000. The rates are currently at 5.99%.
- Centrepay: Centrepay is a free bill paying service. Use Centrepay to arrange regular deductions from your Centrelink payment. You can organise this online through your MyGov account or visit any Centrelink office for assistance.
Good2Go is an ethical buying service that gives StepUP and NILS client’s access to the best prices on an energy efficient white goods, computers and other household appliances.
Support through other agencies and the Victorian Government
- Kildonan Uniting Care offer support through their ‘Energy Audit’ program. This program offers a free, comprehensive energy audit and explanation of energy usage within your home. In some instances they are able to provide free energy and water saving retrofit items (subject to funding and availability). For more information contact them on 1800 545 366 or email: CareRing@kildonan.org.au
- The Victorian Government offer a scheme called Victorian Energy Saver, where third parties source a high energy efficient item for you at the best price, which is then discounted as a result of energy credits. This program is coordinated by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning. You can contact them here.
Contact your energy retailer
Some energy retailers provide offer a program that will assist low income clients to purchase energy efficient white goods. Call your energy provider, ask for the financial hardship team, and enquire if they provide this service.
Reconditioned or Refurbished white goods
Some large Op shops may have second hand fridges.
And remember, if you are having money problems then book an appointment with a financial counsellor for a free, confidential service.