“When I was successful in getting a loan, it picked me up. I felt I was in control again.”

Norma, NILs Client

Are you looking for a safe and affordable loan to pay for essential goods or services that you really need?

BFFS is an approved provider of Good Shepherd Microfinance. These products are part of a community-focused initiative which aims to offer safe, fair and affordable finance options to those on low incomes. NILs loans and Essentials insurance are underwritten by National Australia Bank and Suncorp respectively:


No Interest Loans (NILs) are available for up to $2,000 to those who have a Health Care Card or earn less than $57,000 per year after tax. Repayments are set at an affordable amount over a 12 to 24 month period. To qualify for a No Interest Loan, you also need to have lived at your current address for at least three months and must demonstrate a willingness and capacity within your budget to repay the loan.

What NILs do and don’t cover:

Do cover Don’t cover
Household items such as white goods and furniture Bills
Some medical and dental services Fines
Education needs such as computers, books, camps and uniforms Rent arrears, bond
Car repairs or registration Can’t be provided as a cash amount
Other items may be requested upon approval by the loans committee Holidays

What paperwork do you need to provide in order to apply?

  • Proof of identity (driver’s licence and Healthcare Card or proof of age card).
  • A detailed statement of your income from Centrelink with deductions listed (No more than two weeks old).
  • Payslips from any casual or part time work (if applicable).
  • Quote for goods or services that you are wanting to purchase with the loan. The quote should be on the businesses letterhead and include their ABN and banking details.
  • Car registration papers/receipt of purchase (if loan is for car repairs).
  • Most recent bank statements (for the last month).
  • Rental agreement or statement of rental payments (or a statutory declaration signed by either the police, pharmacist or Justice of the Peace).
  • Home owners – rates notice and mortgage statement (if applicable)
  • Most recent utility bill.

How to submit documentation

Your paperwork can be submitted in the following ways:

  1. In person at our Bendigo, Shepparton or Cobram offices.
  2. You can scan your paperwork and send as PDF files to: nils@bffs.org.au. Please include your name in the email subject line. To scan documents using your mobile phone, download the Genius Scan app or use the scan functionality on the iPhone Notes app.

If you would like to apply for a No Interest Loan, please complete the enquiry form below or call us during office hours:

Essentials Insurance

Would you like peace of mind that your possessions can be replaced should they get stolen or damaged by circumstances beyond your control? Essentials insurance is a safe and affordable way to go for low income earners and can be paid for annually, monthly, fortnightly or through Centrepay.

Essentials by AAI offers comprehensive car and home contents insurance.

You are eligible if you have a Healthcare card, receive Centrelink payments or have a household income of less than $48,000 (excluding superannuation).

What is the level of cover and how much does it cost?

  • Car cover: $3,000 – $5,000
  • Home contents cover: $10,000 – $20,000

Price depends on your age and where you live.

If you would like more information about Essentials Insurance go here.