Messed Up

I think Navient is messing with me. This is not the first time it’s happened either, but I always contributed it to my own, human error…

A few days ago I made a rather large payment towards my private loans with the intent to pay off the loan with the lowest balance by the end of January 2015. I made smaller payments for the two higher-balance loans, based on their accrued interest.  You can see in the image below how easy it is to make sure what you’re paying goes to the correct loan.

navientpayment

Two days pass while my payment is pending and today I find out that they applied my LARGE payment towards the wrong loan. Oy! I am no longer on track to pay off the smallest one in January. I guess I need to start taking screen captures of how I allocate my payments. It’s not all bad because my money still went towards paying off my loans and got me a little closer to my principal balance on the one it was applied towards. It’s just frustrating how easily they can mess up your plans!

Desperate Measures

A few days ago I stumbled on this article about a man robbing a bank in hopes of going to jail because he had student debt.  He asked for $500 and told cops he wanted to go to jail for a long time.  The article may seem a bit far-fetched but I have to admit this has been an option that came up in my ways to avoid paying off my student loan debt conversations and thoughts (alongside being a perpetual student and death).  Considering how much we spend on prisoners, having free food, shelter, healthcare plus education doesn’t seem like such a bad thing when you’re facing a lifetime of debilitating debt you can’t afford to pay.  Some people are in more desperate situations than I am and going to jail is not currently an option for me, nor is death/suicide.  I have a husband who can fully support me and with the help of my co-signer and father, I will  pay off my debts.  Hopefully sooner rather than later!

I have to be honest and say that if my situation were completely different, I might consider some drastic/desperate measures to pay off my student debt.  If I didn’t have my husband to support me, I would probably still be working part-time at the library making minimum wage and having to resort to credit cards to pay rent with no idea how to afford my student loan payments.  I would be without health insurance as well.  As a cancer survivor, that is a necessity.  I am very fortunate to not be in that situation and I feel for those who do find themselves worse off.  I’ve heard too many stories of suicides due to student debt.

 

On a more positive note, Senators Durbin (IL), Harkin (IA) and Franken (MN) are reintroducing important bills to restore bankruptcy protections to student loans and to help students avoid taking on unnecessary private student loans with the Know Before You Owe Act of 2013  and the Fairness For Struggling Students Act of 2013.  Last year only Democrats co-sponsored those bills.  My congressman at the new apartment will be Republican.  I need to make an effort to meet with him this year on multiple occasions in attempt to persuade him to co-sponsor some of these bills involving much-needed student loan reform.

I can’t stress how important these two bills are.  I would not be in so much student loan debt right now if the Know Before You Owe Act of 2013  was passed a long time ago.  My school had me take out private loans before I even touched federal loans.  I didn’t know the difference and they took advantage of that.

Restoring bankruptcy protections for student loans may not have a direct impact on me as I never plan to file for bankruptcy,  but I do believe it is a great step in putting the risk back in lending.  This will help lower tuition rates when lenders are no longer willing to lend out asinine amounts to students who have a chance  of finding a career after graduation.  When students are unable to continue in their programs due to lack of funds, schools will be forced to lower tuition.

Bankruptcy protections should have never been removed from student loans, federal or private.

Merry Christmas

To all those that celebrate, Merry Christmas!  My husband has duty today.  It’s no big deal.  We do not exchange gifts.  We don’t even decorate for the holidays.  It’s never really been a religious holiday for my family and has always basically been about presents.  Very materialistic.  Sure, it is fun to watch my young nieces open their presents on Christmas and I can’t lie, I like receiving gifts myself.  But since moving so far away, it’s hard to get into the spirit.  By February most of their gifts are lost or forgotten anyways.  Both of them are completely spoiled and get way too many gifts.  I’m only going to be giving them hand-made gifts from now on.  They seem to cherish those more and are less likely to go missing.

We signed our lease!  Originally the landlord wanted $900 for rent.  After we viewed the property and talked to him for a long time (him and hubby can be blabbermouths), he offered $850, “military discount.”  When we went to sign the lease on Sunday it said $800 with a $50 rebate for the first four months.  We initially thought the rebate was him reducing the rent from $850 to $800 and that it would go back up to $850 after four months.  Instead, he handed us a $50 bill/rebate!  He probably figures he’ll cut us some slack because he hasn’t gotten the place cleaned up yet and we offered to help.  He has some medical conditions that prevent him from doing a lot of the work and his hired help hasn’t been very reliable.  The previous tenants left a pretty big mess.  They painted over wallpaper with a lime green color so he’s completely stripping the bathroom to get the wallpaper off.  Their dogs peed all over the hardwood floor and he’s going to use one of those buffer machines and get it waxed.  We went there today to help but there wasn’t much to do.  He just wanted us to clean the baseboards and a closet to prepare for painting.  Hopefully we’ll be able to help more once he’s ready to paint.  He’s having surgery in January and won’t be able to do anything for a few weeks.  Hopefully everything will be finished during the first week of January.  That’s when hubby’s holiday leave is and would be the perfect time to move.

Once I find a job, I need to look into reconsolidating my private loans.  During my final year at AI I was approved for a private loan with no cosigner and I want more than anything to get my co-signer released.  My credit is decent and if I have a job, maybe, just maybe I could be approved with no co-signer to reconsolidate.  I wish!

I did some calculating and will hopefully have my credit cards paid off by June or July of 2013.  My US Bank card has a balance of about $4500 and the interest starts up in April.  I have about $400 I’m going to put towards it by the end of the month.  Then I have an additional $300 coming in each month (someone paying me back for helping them).  Utilities will hopefully be low for January and February.  Hubby is going underway for sometime early in 2013.  With him not around, I will save on utilities, food and transportation costs so I could probably put at least $300 towards the bill…possibly more.  I keep forgetting that rent won’t automatically be deducted from his account anymore…possibly could double that $300 for a month or two.  Hopefully I will have a job by the end of January.  It’s possible I’ll have the entire US Bank card balance paid off by April, when the interest starts accruing.  That’s the goal!

Speaking of goals…it’s almost New Years and resolution-making time!  I’m sure I’ll have a large list of goals and resolutions for 2013!  What are some of your goals and resolutions for 2013?