As our nation moves into our fifth month of dealing with the COVID-19 outbreak, Coastal is continuing to adapt so we can keep providing the services you need right now, and so we will be ready to do business for the long term when things start to get back to normal.
First, to address your biggest question, we don’t yet have a reopening date for welcoming members back into branches. We’re watching North Carolina’s COVID-19 stats every day, and are waiting until it is safe to begin having people in our branches again.
In the meantime, we have implemented an online appointment scheduling system, with the goal of making branches available by appointment in the near future. For now, we’ve begun offering phone and video meetings by appointment at six locations. The scheduling tool is available inside of online and mobile banking. Our aim is to have phone and video appointments available at all locations by the end of this month.
Of course, nearly every service we offer can be conducted online already, through our website, online banking, mobile banking apps, and our 24-hour call center.
For those of you who continuing to feel the financial effects of COVID, we’re doing all we can to keep providing relief. We’re still offering 3 months of Skip-A-Pay on various loans, and have extended credit card skip-a-pay through the end of July. Mortgage forbearances are also available, up to six months. We’re also extending the waiver of late fees and the reduction of our NSF fee through the end of August. We know that in times like this, every bit helps.
After all, times like this are the reason credit unions exist. It’s been a difficult year, but with every challenge, we’ve simply started each response with, “we need do the right thing”.
Coastal, too, is feeling the effects of COVID, but we’re still doing well overall. In June, we made the decision to plan ahead, and allocated additional $15 million in our allowance for loan losses. This has resulted in a small net income loss through the first half of the year. Our net worth ratio, the key measure of financial health for financial institutions, remains over 10%. It has declined slightly, largely due to much higher than expected deposit growth. Looking ahead, we expect an increase in loan losses over the next two years, but still forecast breaking even or having a small net profit for this year.
Thank you all for your ongoing trust and confidence that your credit is here for you. Please keep yourselves safe, so that we can see each other again soon.
President & CEO