Student loans….again

 

I sent in my first “real” student loan payment the other week and it applied to my account today. I felt such a thrill! Granted for a little over a year now, I’ve been making “payments” but it didn’t feel real as it was to get the loans out of default status.  And the one loan went into deferment so I haven’t made a payment on it.  (As much as I wanted to, the car had to come first along with a few other items that cropped up unexpectedly.  I’d much rather not make a payment on something that isn’t due yet then have to withdraw the money from our very baby emergency fund. Maybe that isn’t what other people would do but I’m okay with that.  I had to make a tough choice and went with what I thought was best for us.)

It didn’t go down by much-I only paid an extra $2.15 (roughly) as I just can’t afford to pay anymore yet.  But it was roughly 1% of my loan that I paid.  Ouch, that hurts to see small number right there in black and white but I’m still happy that I’m on my road to debt recovery. It’s slow going and sometimes I feel like I’m taking breaks (i.e. not paying more than I am and not paying on the loan that is in default) but I’m still moving forward.

Eventually we won’t have a wedding we’re paying for that takes up a lot of any “extra” money.  And, I’m proud of how we are doing it, so don’t get me wrong there.  But when we are able to concentrate on getting out of debt, I’m going to be even happier.   Eventually I can see us making double payments but that day isn’t close to being here yet.

So yes, it might be too soon for the fireworks but I’m extremely happy about this turn in events.  We’re on the right path and every little battle is worth it right now.


Seriously I hate my student loans

Granted I messed up in the first place by not paying them off or at least not getting them put into forbearance.  But seriously: the amount of issues I just had crop up regarding the consolidated ones are so very frustrating.

First off, let me just say that I’m glad I haven’t been ignoring my mail again.  I’ve wanted to sometimes but remembered that was part of what got me into trouble in the first place.  Instead, I’ve been opening it up and reading it right away.  Some gets put into a pile to deal with later (bills that aren’t due yet), some get put into the trash as they don’t have any relevance and some get dealt with as soon as possible.    Last Saturday, I got a letter that went into the last pile.  I had to wait until Monday morning at 8am eastern time to figure everything out.

What was this letter? Why it was from the company I’ve been dealing with for a few months, explaining that my wages were going to be garnished as I’d been ignoring them.  I had a mini heart attack, I swear.   First I went over to my pile of “file this away (not in the trash but my real file) as I’m done dealing with them.” (Pack rat tendencies mean I won’t throw things away until I feel comfortable that the situation is dealt with…this will probably be next summer) I noticed that the address was different, the main account number was different but everything else was the same: which loans it was, how much they were for (though they were decreased in number on the new letter slightly as I’d been paying on them) and the phone number.  And yes you read that right: even though I’d been paying on them with that same company and it showed by looking at the total balance from month to month, I was still going to be garnished for failure to pay the company.

So then I had to stew on it for a day and a half as I’d missed the cut off to call them on a Saturday.  And by only an hour! (Stupid central time being behind…) Monday morning I call bright and early—they look at both accounts and say they have no idea how it was given a second account but that I wasn’t in any jeopardy of getting my wages garnished as it was fully funded.  Both accounts were actually fully funded. (I did go check out my consolidation site to make sure they weren’t in there double at this point.  They weren’t.) They did not know why I was receiving the nasty letter as I’d been paying them on time ever since we came to our agreement.  I wrote down the customer services agent’s name, the time and the date of the call just in case anything does happen though. Especially since the rep said that the accounts were funded and closed.

I went home happy that it was all a misunderstanding and received yet another letter from the company (with the normal account number this time) telling me they were withdrawing money from my account in a few days time.  Which if you remember that dilemma I was having I would have been okay with—except for the fact that I was just told that my account(s) were funded and closed with them.  The money would not have been applied to anything or if it was, would have taken a few days to get it to the correct people. So I called up again to enquire about the letter.  This time I was told that the letter was auto generated before the account was funded.  I hope so…

I can’t wait for this entire issue to be fixed! And yes, it is partially my fault for getting them messed up in the first place (read: defaulted) but I am trying to get them fixed.  But it doesn’t work when they just send out random info!


Dilemma

Maybe my lovely readers could help me out with this small issue I’m having.  Every payday I place money in an account that is used for my student loans.  And it’s (mostly) strictly for my student loans—a few side purchases such as flea medication for my cat or medicine for me has been pulled from it but that’s been in rare cases.

Remember that student loan I forgot about?  Well, turns out that there was an issue in that too.  I apparently read the student loan summary wrong—or they supplied information on another loan thinking I was going to consolidate them.  Well, that was the plan originally but with the forgetting them issue, this was dropped and I just assumed that all the loans they had sent me were with that company.  This wasn’t true, so again I dropped the ball on my loans.   But I picked it up again a few weeks later when the company who actually owned it, gave me a call.  After numerous emails (I really do need to check my personal email more often….) we were able to set up a time to call each other. The lady I spoke to was very nice and gave me an offer to consolidate that loan plus the ones I had just started paying on.  Sadly, my other loan isn’t able to be included in this consolidation.

After months of waiting…okay, after a month and a half of waiting, it was approved and I’m all set to start paying back on that loan come September.   After 3 months of paying on it, it should wipe all loans out of default status.   I think—I have this written down and if it’s not true, I’ll be calling the company who told me it would.   Now my small issue comes about with August.

Provided that the previous loan holder doesn’t take my money on the 25th as was previously scheduled (this actually happened with my other loan.  It was sold but the previous company took the payment as scheduled.  It worked out in the end because it went through as a overpayment.), I’ll have a time when I can make a partial payment to both student loans that is considered extra.  This would help out with both and would help pay on the accruing interest in the loan that is now in forbearance.

Or I can not put as much money into this account and instead use it for us.  We’ve been cutting back on a lot of things in order to make sure that we pay on our debts, save for several things and one of these areas we’ve cut back a lot is at the grocery store.  We still pay a lot of money every month for groceries/household items but not as much as before.  We’d been eating a lot of stuff that was in the pantry but now we’ve kind of come to the point where this isn’t really a great option.  We’re running low on some stuff and not just in the pantry.  Our household stuff needs to be looked at too.  It wouldn’t affect the payment schedule at all as I know that in September I will have the money to start paying on the one and the other doesn’t have a payment scheduled until February.

Part of me really wants to make an extra payment (even if it will only be partial payments) and another part of me wants to take some of that money and go spend it at the grocery store to give us a little breathing room.   Granted I have about 10 days to find out if either of these will be an option (though I guess I’d be paying on the consolidated student loan at least) but I like to plan ahead.  I get paid on the 24th but can always use this money after it’s been deposited into this account.  Should I even be worrying about this right now?


And to the right we have…..

Sometimes I feel as if I’m on a display with people wondering why I do what I do.  Partly it’s my own fault (I’m WEIRD in all capital letters for serious) and partly it’s because of what I’m doing here.  I don’t tell many friends that I blog—kind of because I tend to like the idea of being completely honest and sometimes I’ll share conversations on here.  And when I do tell friends I blog, and they find out what I blog about, I get the question “WHY do you want to get out debt so quickly? You have your whole life to do this.” Seriously.  No, really, it’s an actual comment (okay paraphrased from many comments) that I’ve received.

My answer: because I’m smart.  Oh wait, that’s implying they aren’t smart and isn’t very nice at all.  Okay, new answer: Because I have better uses for my money than letting it go to debt payment for years on end. But that’s still not really why and kind of sounds uppity.  Okay, final answer: because I don’t like the thought of owing someone a lot of money when I could be doing fun things with that money.  That’s not bad.  And it’s true!  I know that I could go on a vacation on credit and that would be “fun” but it’s not going to be fun enough to continue paying years down the road.  (And yes, I’m implying that I wouldn’t be paying that vacation of in full when I received the statement.  Just the minimums)

And yes, money is a little tight right now (for instance, I’m saving up to go to a concert for a date in September because our normal date money won’t cover it all instead of just being able to rearrange the budget to give us more that time) and sometimes I feel like there is no end in sight.  But I know it’s going to be worth it.   And maybe it’s just pride getting in the way, but I really hate owing people money.  Not that you can tell if you look at the sheer amount of debt I’m in but I really don’t like it. And truthfully, it’s only stretched tight because we are saving up to move, saving for a wedding, saving up for a efund and we’re trying to get out of debt.  Not many normal people do that.

So yes, student loans (one of the contention issues) might be structured to be paid off over the long-term, but when I can, I plan on starting to knock those suckers out.  This is partially because I defaulted on them for a while and am a few years behind but also just because I really don’t like them hanging over my head.  The future plan is to go after the baby one and just get it down as fast as I can.  Of course, we also have to take care of my fiancé’s student loan.  So that will in actuality be the first to go as it really is a baby. Point is? Debt has got to go.  And yes, if I get a house, it might come back but that’s far down the road.

In conclusion, people can stare at me like I’m on display all they want.  I’ll eventually be debt free and a lot happier and I am also comfortable with my incredible weirdness.


Student Loan Number 1

I wasted so much time last Thursday….

My first student loan is now officially out of default status!!!!  (The quadruple exclamation points show how excited I am) It should never have been there in the first place but that’s a previous mistake.  Except….it almost didn’t get paid for this month. I’d have been upset as I’ve worked really hard to get it out of default and didn’t want it to get placed back in default and according to the loan rehabilitator that I was working with, one missed payment would send it back into that icky status. I’ve been waiting on a statement from the company who bought it as I was told this should happen in a few weeks after it was rehabilitated and it was rehabilitated at the beginning of May. (In fact, the payment that was processed in June was considered an “overpayment”) I never received anything—and no payment was taken out of my account for June.So I gave them a few days what with the 29th being a Friday and then July 4th occurring to see if they would process my payment but still nothing!  After a two-hour period where I called one company after another, I finally found out who I should contact.  Keep in mind that I had to verify my address with every single phone call.  I finally get in contact the company who owns the student loan and verify my current phone number and work phone number with them.  The address is one from 5 years ago.  They did find it funny that all the letters they sent to me were returned to them though.  (*eye roll*) And then I find the payment jumped up about $110 more than was agreed on with original collector and was due in two days.  Ha, funny.

So I talked to a customer service rep and was able to put it into forbearance for 6 months.  I want to do the 6 months and not the year as I really am trying to pay these student loans off.  I’m just not going to be able to afford this larger payment right away.  So I figure if I continue to put aside the amount of money into my account that I pay this off with, I can pay on some of it as I can and work my budget to be able to afford the larger payment.  Another reason I want to wait on reworking the budget is that I am still waiting on that news for the other student loans I have.  I’m hoping to hear from that in a few weeks—this will give me a much better idea on how much I need to budget for.

To sum up: not a good experience with the company who bought the loan at first but they’ve redeemed themselves! My new plan is to try to pay some of the student loan (which is actually two loans but lumped togetherish) while it is forbearance. And then to find out how much the other student loans will be and get my budget worked out.  I’m glad that my plan is working out so far and I’m moving in the right direction to get out of debt.


Student Loan Updates

I have a love for checking out shows and cartoons from when I was younger and absolutely in love with them.  Just recently I was watching Darkwing Duck and managed to come across the episode where Morgana McCawber is robbing the city of all their wealth in order to pay for student loans.  I never caught the reference when I was younger and I know that I watched that show so many times-whether it was a rerun or not.

I just thought I would share that tidbit with you—fascinating, huh? Even back then student loans were high.

Speaking of student loans, I’ve not made my “first” payment towards that one student loan.  Technically it was my second, but I split the first payment up into two different times.  From now on, I have to have the money on the card by the 25th.  After 8 months (and 8 more payments) this loan will then be in good standing again and I can try to negotiate a lower payment on it.  Ugh, that seems like 8 very long months away.  But I’m thinking it will fly by or at least I’m hoping for it.

The first student loan, that I’ve been making faithful payments every month to bring into good status, should be coming into good status relatively soon.  Hopefully, I will then be making some progress on it.  As it stands right now, I’m not really—I pay the money but it doesn’t seem to be doing any good.

And as for the guy’s student loans—that number over to the right feels like it isn’t moving at all.  Oh wait, I know that I forgot to update it after that first time.  Okay, now it’s updated….and it still hasn’t moved.  Seriously, going to take a long time to get that number to feel like it’s moving.  I know that it’s because we aren’t able to put as much towards it as I would like but I’m hoping to change that soon.  What’s changing? Well, we won’t have to save for a baby shower much longer so that money will be being split between Christmas (yup going to start saving now) and debt.  And probably e-fund because I would really like that to be higher as we just recently had a car scare.

So there you have it—my updated status on our student loan’s and my new plans for the “extra” money we will soon be having. Have you started to save for Christmas?


Confession Time

While I was planning on doing my April goals and going over my March goals, I have a confession to make.  I was incredibly stupid when I was younger (not really a surprise) and even though I’m trying to get on top of things I made a mistake a few months ago.  I forgot about a loan company I was working with to come up with a reasonable payment plan.  I had sent in the application so I could try to get my loan out of default status but at the same time I was working with another company to get another loan under control.  I was also looking for a place in town that we could move too.  

Long story short, after sending in the application I forgot to follow through.  I had come to an agreement with the second company and have been faithfully paying them every month.  I’ve had a few issues with them where they don’t get the paperwork I send in until the third or fourth time but when they have an issue they leave me a message on the phone number I’ve given them and they do it after 5pm.  And I get back to them.  Well, I’ve had a few messages that are just hang ups—like we are getting the tail end of a message with no substance.  And the phone numbers are always blocked or restricted so I can’t even call the number to find out who it is.

Then last Friday I received a call at work (and that bothered me too) that they were going to be garnishing my wages.  I almost started crying in the middle of my office cubicle.  I was frustrated enough dealing with a report at work and then I got that call.  I had forgotten about it but I knew I had been waiting on the company to contact me—I just hadn’t put things together.  I was able to get them to give me until Monday to send in my pay check stubs before they put in the letter to my payroll department to start the garnishment. Needless to say I wasn’t really happy this weekend—I was busy trying to figure out what I could do. 

Turns out that I can’t build a time machine and go back to make better decisions—though, that would be extremely helpful, right?  And there is no reset button to remake my choices.  So I sent in my pay stubs and worried over everything until I heard back from my contact at the company.  Turns out that I didn’t get my paychecks garnished but I do have to pay $250 a month.  This is not that bad as long as I take out half from one check and half from the other check.  It’s not that great either but I will still be able to save money for the wedding and a few other things.  Now saving for my e-fund will be a bit harder—we are not going to have that much money left over after every pay check.  But we are going to cut back where we can and just push onward.

The good part about doing this is that after 9 months I will have wiped out the bad charges I let rack up and the debt will be in good standing again.  So that will be nothing but helpful for us.   I just wish that I had remembered about this earlier and followed up with the company.  It would have saved me a weekend of worrying and of course, I would have been partially through the 9 months to get that loan in good standing.

I had to confess to you guys though.  I feel so guilty for even letting my debt get this bad and then forgetting about following through.  


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 369 other followers