Powersports Lenders Offer Relief During Government Shutdown

With 800,000 government workers going without pay during the government shutdown, powersports lenders are offering deferrals to help ease the burden on affected borrowers.

Here’s a rundown of six lenders’ deferment programs:

ThunderRoad Financial

The government has been shut down for almost a full month, which means that more consumers are likely to have trouble making monthly loan payments on their powersports vehicles. ThunderRoad Financial has been offering a deferral for the past “couple of weeks” to borrowers that are affected by the government shutdown, Chief Operations Officer Kristi Mercier told PSF.

“We are currently offering a one-month deferment for our customers that are affected by the shutdown,” Mercier said. “We review the credit application at the time of application for verification of the employer, and if they have changed jobs or it is unclear, we request a paystub to show that they are affected.”

FreedomRoad Financial

The Oak Brook, Ill.-based lender is similarly offering a one-month deferral for consumers. FreedomRoad Financial began offering deferrals this week after seeing the shutdown affect more borrowers, Executive Vice President and Managing Director Tom Collins said.

“We had been planning that we might need to act, but we were hopeful the situation would be resolved and the partial government shutdown would end,” Collins said. “On Monday of this week, we received our first calls from customers voicing their concerns to us, and at that time we implemented our free deferral policy for those that are impacted.”

American Honda Finance Corp.

Rather than offer a widespread program, American Honda Finance Corp. is evaluating borrower requests as they come in, then determining the best course of action, a company spokesman said.

“American Honda Finance Corporation is aware of the difficult circumstances facing federal employees, and we empathize with their situation,” said the spokesman. “Our regional offices are providing personalized assistance upon request to customers affected by the current federal government shutdown on a case-by-case basis. We encourage customers to contact their local Honda Financial Services or Acura Financial Services office to allow us to explore a solution that meets their individual needs.”

American Cycle Finance

Subprime motorcycle lender American Cycle Finance is postponing payments until the shutdown is over and has done so for a “handful” of consumers over the past couple of weeks, President Ben Donnarumma said.

Customers can reach out to the Marlborough, Mass.-based lender and voice their concerns about potentially missing payments. ACF will then confirm that the borrower was affected by the shutdown. The process has “gone very smoothly,” Donnarumma said, adding that it has been easier to handle than the relief for Hurricane Harvey in 2017 because consumers have not lost all of their belongings.

Mountain America Federal Credit Union

Mountain America Federal Credit Union is offering a three-month payment deferral but will consider other terms if needed, Vice President of Public Relations Tony Rasmussen said.

Additionally, the credit union is also offering relief loans, which are “signature loans at significantly lower rates [based on credit] with automatic deferral,” Rasmussen added. “If an affected member needs a [powersports] loan, we’ll also honor their last verified salary amount for qualification consideration, even though they’re not currently receiving a paycheck.”

Dealer Direct

Dealer Direct — the powersports division of Batesville, Ark.-based First Community Bank —  informed borrowers via email and text messages that it would be offering a one-month extension to borrowers.

If the shutdown continues, there is a possibility that the lender will postpone payments another 30 days, Senior Vice President Steve Wilcoxon said.

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