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They ARE Sneaks!!!

August 9th, 2007 at 08:55 pm

So, I got the results of my little experiment. Verdict? Charter One Loans are bastardly! Yes, I'm sure that's a real word. It is now.

I sent $100 to the home equity loan AFTER my normal payment, and they cheerfully applied the entire amount to interest only, even though I specified principal. I called and she's having the charge moved to principal but the only way to ensure that extra payments make it to my balance is to send them in with my regular monthly payment. So I can't send 2 a month without having to call and reiterate where the second one should go. This daily interest accrual stinks.

Experiment: Sneaky Bank?

August 4th, 2007 at 05:28 pm

So, my home equity loan.

When I first started making extra payments a few months ago, the bills would show up for less than the monthly payment. Each month I owe them $405. I started paying $505, and the following month's bill said I owe them $305. I called them up and made sure that my extra $100 was being applied towards the principal. They said yes but since I was paying over...that I don't HAVE to pay in full the following month. What sneaks! I asked if they could break it down for me so I knew how much of my payment each month was going to interest vs. principal. They said no, because interest is added DAILY, and where my money goes depends on when I pay.

Um, WHAT??? That sucks.

So I started a spreadsheet, downloaded the history of the loan, and parsed it all out to determine how to beat their system. It's sneaky! Or I'm stupid and naive.

OK. So my bill is due on the 21st of each month. I get it in the mail 7-10 days before due date. Which is sneaky in itself, but I use my bank's bill pay. I'll suck it up. BUT...this is what I found:

Money Arrives on the 18th (3 days before due): $312 to Interest, $93 to principal!

Money Arrives on the 1st (20 days before due): $105 to Interest, $300 to principal!

So I already paid this month's (with the standard extra payment), but now I want to send a separate EXTRA $100. How much you wanna bet that they'll still pull their portion of the interest out before applying the rest to my balance? Even though I already paid this month's allotment.

SNEAKY!

Show Me Your Money Dance!

August 2nd, 2007 at 06:00 pm

Spending Today:

$294.88: Last payment to boyfriend.

It started as a personal loan made 14 months ago - he paid for some household improvements when I didn't have the cash and I insist on keeping all spending to do with the house under my name as the house is mine. Then some things got tacked on...he paid for a vacation, I put the TV on my card, etc. So the back and forth has been tracked for over a year. To the tune of over $12,000 being exchanged between us. And today...OMG. It's done!

The biggest upside is that I was covering his portion of the home equity loan as part of my payback. We agreed to break it down so that he paid for half of the principal that was used towards renovating the pool and backyard, the rest of the loan was used towards my car, so I pay the majority. Now that frees up $90 per month starting in September.

Wait! Since I'm already used to paying for his share, I'm going to continue and snowball it into each month's payment. That just hit me! See? You guys are rubbing off on me already. Just 4 months ago I was making the standard $405 payment. Then I upped it to $505 in May. Next month it's going to be $605!

*runs off to calculator*

From 15 year term down to 8! Saving over $13,000 in interest!!!

*doing a little booty shake in my office chair*

Total stream of conciousness, there. Ahem.