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Navient Issues

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Thank you so much for your encouragement and support on my posts this past Monday (first post about paying off 2 additional debts and the second post about doing a balance transfer to pay off a high interest student loan). I was expecting a bit of backlash but overwhelmingly received lots of virtual high fives and words of support. Thank you!!!

So I just have to tell you what I’ve been dealing with this month with my student loan company, Navient. It just further solidifies my feelings that this balance transfer was the RIGHT move for us.

To back up a bit…remember this post? I wrote about how I wanted to pay extra on certain loans (and not on others) and how it would require me to make an additional payment (after the minimum payment was already applied) which would be applied equally to all loans, and then I’d have to call and have the payment re-applied only to the loans I requested. This process would have to happen every single month.

WELLLL…..let me just tell you about the extreme headache I’ve had dealing with Navient just for this balance transfer…

I’m currently 6 calls deep and over 2 hours of time invested in the process. This is because (surprise, surprise) the balance transfer was incorrectly applied toward the WRONG loan. My initial call was simply to have the funds moved to the correct loan.

“It will take 5 business days.”

A week later, no changes. I call again.

“It will be done by the end of business tomorrow.”

I check back. No changes.

“It will be done by the end of business today.”

I check back. This time the payment has been REMOVED from the wrong loan….but nothing has been applied toward the correct loan. It’s like that payment is just gone.

I call again.

“It should be done by the end of business tomorrow.” (seeing a pattern here?)

No changes. I call again.

“So weird. It shows like it was done on our end. There was some type of glitch in the system. I’m going to get my supervisor involved.”

38 minutes later (that’s the actual time from my cell phone record)….no change. According to the person, “it should be done by end of business today.”

LoL. Yeah. I won’t hold my breath, buddy.

Eventually it WILL get sorted out. Now it’s been well over 10 days, but I’ve been assured that since the error is on THEIR end that I won’t be charged for any interest that has continued to accrue (my payment was for the full 10-day payoff amount as of 4/2…but with interest the loan balance has continued to creep up).

So the moral of the story is that I am over the moon thrilled that I came to realize that balance transfers are the way to go for us. This issue is a one-time thing (sure, it’s taking a long time to resolve, but once its resolved it will be over and done!) I cannot even imagine trying to fight this battle every single month. It’d be enough to put me in the loony bin (or just give up on paying extra only toward certain loans!)

I did have a question that I wanted to address about my loans….

I do currently pay extra on my Navient Federal Loan. The way the system is set up, it groups all my Department of Education loans together (which is why its incredibly difficult to pay extra on just a single loan). But my Navient Federal loan (I only have one, not multiple) is separate. So it’s totally easy-peasy to pay extra on it. My Federal Loan is my other highest interest loan (at 8.25%…I think I’d accidentally said it was 8.5% somewhere else, but that was incorrect). The minimum payment is $16/month and I’ve been paying $116/month for the past several months (see debt payments here). My plan is to continue to pay extra on that loan both because of the higher interest rate and also because its easy for me to do so in the online system. My balance transfer loan, however, will be paid a little more aggressively (since it HAS to be paid within 12 months to avoid a huge interest penalty). So the plan is to continue paying $116/month on the federal loan, and to pay $500/month on the balance transfer loan (which was originally 1-01 on my Department of Education Loans listed in this post).

I owe you a debt update (coming on Monday), but if you want to see balances and APRs of my other debts, my last debt update post (from March) can be found right here….and my Pandora’s Box post, where I finally separate all of my department of education loans, can be found here.

So there you go. I just wanted to add a little bit of detail and clarification here and to reinforce my opinion that this balance transfer was absolutely the right move for us!

Thanks for your continued support and encouragement along the way!

Have you ever struggled to pay extra toward certain loans? How’d you solve the problem?

Ashley

Texan at heart; Arizonan on paper. Lover of running, cheese, camping, and family (fur-family included!). Blogger, motivated to get out of debt YESTERDAY! Follow along with my journey!

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33 Comments

  • Reply nsheils |

    Yes, I struggle with Navient and I’ve wondered if I should just pay off the 19k balance, even though it’s .05% less than the rest of my loans just so I don’t have to log onto Navient again. I can’t allocate funds to my individual loans and it’s frustrating. I have 2 Federal consolidations and I would like to pay off the smallest balance, but I can’t.

      • Reply Jodie |

        Unreal the theft happening with Navient! I cant believe there has not been an addition much larger class action suit against them. We just paid 30k+ to pay off and I guarantee you they sit on these payments and not post to draw more interest etc. Never have I researched and found as many complaints against a company. Just unfortunate that these loans were for education and when those struggling to repay have to deal with a company that so far is getting by with its rogue practices!!!!

    • Reply Lindsey |

      I have a question, and I am trying to understand whats going on with my loans. Someone help!

      So I’m making interest ONLY payments for financial reasons, but consistently have been paying $30 more for about six months. I’ve noticed that my principle amount finally started to decrease! Awesome, right? Wrong! I believe Navient noticed this and now all of a sudden my accrued monthly interest went from $99 to $129. Conveniently a dollar less than the amount I have been paying and seeing a difference with. I was seeing an $80 decrease in my loan amount for months, now it’s not even $20! With my interest rate and the outstanding principle amount the accrued interest should only be $99. How can they get away with this? Or is there something I am not understanding? Is there something I can do about this?

      • Reply Ashley |

        I have no idea, but I think I’ve experienced a similar issue. I’ve been paying the same (low) payment every month and seeing a small dent in principal every month….until just this past month. I logged into the system (I check monthly) and discovered my amount owed has actually INCREASED! I called to ask about why the balance has gone up when I’v been making the same payment for months and it’s always decreased. They had no idea. The lady I spoke with said she’d file something about it and someone would investigate and call me (not holding my breath…and its been 2 weeks with no word). Still no idea what happened

  • Reply Marzey doats |

    Can you clarify your comment about the “huge interest penalty” owed on the balance transfer if not paid in a year? Most balance transfers, unlike 0 interest deals from stores, do not charge you back interest for the year if not paid off, they just start charging (high) interest on the balance remaining after one year. Is your offer different?

    • Reply Ashley |

      Hmmm, I guess I’d have to check with the fine print. I’d just assumed I’d get hit with back interest but maybe that’s not the case. Doing a brief check (just clicking on the balance transfer options, not reading the full fine print document) it just says “0% APR for 12 months. After that, the same variable 17.9% APR as purchases.” So I assume that means there would not be a back charge, but I’m not 100% confident until I read the full disclosure document. Either way…I have no intention of keeping the debt around that long. I want it gone within 11 months (just to be on the safe side) or less!

  • Reply Brooke |

    I have Great Lakes, not Navient, and they’re OK as student loan providers go. But my loans are bundled so I have to pay off an entire account with multiple loans in it rather than individual loans to see my minimum payments go down. : ( Unfortunately my highest interest/highest balance student loan is bundled with my lowest interest student loan. Double : (.

  • Reply Angie |

    Next time you do a balance transfer maybe try doing it to your bank account. Then pay directly from your bank account to the specific loan with a check like I mentioned in the previous post.

    A trick to save on interest is to pay down the loan so it there is only $1 balance or so. Then you followup with a much smaller final payment for the payoff balance. This prevents you paying 10 days extra interest on the full balance. Its saves a nominal amount (would only be ~$10 on your $6000 loan), but I hate my student loans and don’t want to give them any more of my money than I have to!

    • Reply Ashley |

      I did specify the exact loan (by full loan number) and the loan was still mis-applied. : (
      I will, however, be sure to use your trick for my next balance transfer! Good idea!

  • Reply debtor |

    goodness gracious. sounds like they need to be reported to the better business bureau. How is it that other companies are able to get their stuff together but they can’t? Navient is sallie mae right? I’m about to go back to school and need to take out some loans – so looking for what i need to avoid.

    • Reply Walnut |

      Unfortunately, I think there are a lot more providers like Navient than not.

    • Reply Ms. Mintly @ MintlyBlog |

      Sallie Mae is indeed part of Navient now, though you can still get loans through one or the other, I think? It is no fun working with them, but I didn’t have a choice as to who my lender would be (not that I would have known what company to pick at that point in my life, anyway!).

      I’m wondering if anyone has experience with a student loan lender who DOESN’T make repayments hard?!

      • Reply Angie |

        All loan companies will have their quirks. They are trying to wear you down so you get discouraged and just go with it. The same applies to auto loan companies advancing payments. And also credit card companies and the 0% balance transfer offers (applying minimum payments to either your balance transfer or purchases first whichever causes more interest). However, you can usually find a way that works with that specific company and follow it to ignore all of the calling and reapplying payment hassle.

        I’ve had loans through Sallie Mae, Navient, Great Lakes, ESCI, Citibank, and some other ones I can’t remember. All of them there was a way to painlessly apply the payment to the correct account. It wasn’t always obvious or intuitive but its possible! Some were easier than others but I did find a way that worked through Sallie Mae that I expect would work the same now that they are Navient.

          • Ashley |

            I’m not sure that this is true anymore. Angie, please correct me if I’m wrong as I’d love to hear more, too! But I know I used to be able to apply money toward an individual loan (maybe a year or so ago?) and the online system has since changed. From what I’ve been told, an easier way (versus applying extra money and calling to have it re-applied toward the correct loan) is to send a check that specifies the exact loan number. In theory, the money should then be applied directly toward that one loan (no need to call and have money re-applied). I will say, however, that’s what I did for this balance transfer and it clearly didn’t work for me so I dunno… : /

          • Angie |

            Maybe it no longer works. Which is sad. I have not tried it in awhile. So Ashley has the most recent experience. I’m sorry it didn’t work for you. Sounds like such a hassle. I hope you get this cleared up soon!

          • Ms. Mintly @ MintlyBlog |

            Ashley, that’s exactly what has happened to me the past few times – I would send a check with the loan number on the check itself as well as clearly typed in a letter that I included, and they would STILL misapply it.

            Brooke @ PFTwins.com told me that she makes her payment online and then always calls or emails afterwards to have them apply it to the correct loan. (Not sure of her service provider.)

            Is it possible that we just have bad luck?! Extraordinarily bad bad luck? 😉

          • Brooke |

            Nah, I have Great Lakes. Never thought I’d be grateful for a better-than-terrible student loan provider!

          • TdePayen |

            They used to have a system for that, but let me tell you what one of their social media reps told me today. He told me that I couldn’t apply payments to a specific loan. He said the consolidated loans were a single loan. Since when? I call shenanigans, especially since I remember when it was Sallie Mae that there was an option to pay my loans separately and we paid off my husbands separately with NelNet no problem. Anyone have any information on that one? I think a class action lawsuit is in order, after reading all of these people who have sent them instructions and they ignore them. This costs us money and makes them money. And where in hades is the department of education in all this? Can they not make them behave?

  • Reply Ms. Mintly @ MintlyBlog |

    This is so similar to what I’ve experienced with Navient! I think they just want people to take the easy way out. I don’t know about the software glitch-y type thing (that’s the official term, right?!), but I can totally commiserate with the mis-application of your payment. These are all the same reasons we transferred part of our balance to a Citibank card so we could pay it off exactly how we wanted. We didn’t get as good a deal as you (our transfer % rate was higher), but we did save a little bit of money on interest and we had a good deal more peace of mind knowing that the payment was being applied in exactly the way we wanted it to be, WHEN we wanted it to be.

    Good luck with all of this! Keep us updated! Just know you aren’t alone! 🙂

  • Reply Ashley |

    Ha! Just gotta update this post from yesterday. I had to call back AGAIN (call #7) because the pay-off has finally shown back up, but its been applied incorrectly to my lowest balance loan (which is also the wrong loan!!!). This time it sounds like the switch should be easier (since both the loans are now department of education loans…i think it was more challenging switching payment from a federal to a department of ed loan), BUT it won’t go into effect until 4/24!!! So I’ve got another week to wait to find out if the loan has been applied correctly. Remember – I started this process (first initiated the transfer) on 4/2! That is insane the amount of time and energy its taking to get this thing paid correctly!!! Want to rip my hair out and scream – AHHHHHH!!!! >>>tantrum over

  • Reply Ashley |

    “Good morning and thank you for calling Navient, how may I help you?”
    “Oh you know, just making my daily call to correct another error on my account” : )

    You guys – the payoff has FINALLY been applied toward the correct loan (wahoo!!!!) BUT – since it took so long, I’d had to make my regular payment in the meantime, and they reapplied those funds evenly amongst all of my remaining loans. Sooooo, this time the call was to have those funds applied directly toward my smallest balance unsubsidized loan. We’ll see if it goes through. Luckily, we’re only talking about a difference of $30 here, so I’m not going to kill myself over it. But, yeah. This month dealing with Navient has truly been a pleasure (hear my sarcasm?) Oof!

  • Reply Jen From Boston |

    UGH!!!

    I had been thinking that while numbers wise it might have been better for you to pay off another loan paying off the Navient loan would be worth just for your mental health!

    And, this highlights something that ticks me off about mortgages and student loans (and possibly other loans): We can’t pick our loan servicer!!!!! And if you get a bad servicer your credit history can get screwed up, and wrt mortgages you could end up with a lien on the property because the servicer messed up the property tax payment. But, because we can’t pick another servicer the servicers have little incentive to provide good, quality service. It’s RIDICULOUS!

  • Reply adam |

    i posted a similar post about my frustrations with great lakes and that post STILL gets comments from other frustrated users. this blog entry will get you some major mileage.

    • Reply Ashley |

      Yeah, I see the comments and one literally just popped up on the Great Lakes post yesterday (for any Great Lakes interested parties, see Adam’s old post here: http://www.bloggingawaydebt.com/2013/12/frustrated-with-great-lakes/ ). The difference is that at least someone from Great Lakes reads the comments and replies. Apparently no one from Navient reads and/or cares about customer satisfaction???
      Although I will say that its odd that I was told (yesterday) that the change wouldn’t appear until the 24th and suddenly it appeared 12 hours later. No idea if this post had anything to do with it but its certainly strange.

      • Reply Ms. Mintly @ MintlyBlog |

        Ashley, if you have Twitter, you could try tweeting them. I share my blog posts on Twitter and I did get a response from someone there. Since I was already in discussions with people at Navient in customer service there, I didn’t follow up that way, but I was surprised that I got a positive response from someone over there at all. So, you might consider tweeting them to see if you get a response that way? While I’d probably generalize and say that the people at Navient I’ve dealt with (the ones who actually do the processing of payments!) are not the easiest or most customer-service-driven, I felt like I at least needed to say that someone from the company did try to reach out to me. 🙂

  • Reply Sarah |

    Having never had student loans, I cannot believe the hassle in paying them. In this day and age with computers, you would think it would be easier. If they had a better computer system, they could probably get rid of 1/3 to 1/2 of their customer service reps as it sounds like moving payments around is one of the big reasons to call them. Just ridiculous.

  • Reply Chad |

    Navient is another name for Sallie Mae the government only changed the name and raised the rate son the loans. I get so sick of hearing how Hilary wants free education and it’s not for the American people. My son was paying $350 a month interest only until I found out. He would be paying this loan until he reached 102 years of age. This is our typical government at work. When he stopped paying do to lack of steady income they tried to reduce the loan in half which was good but they wanted 1,500 a month. People lost their home sin the housing crises and could file bankruptcy yet they say these loans you can’t. I say stop paying them and mail in what you can even if its $30.00 a month keep receipts. Only send money orders so they don’t have a bank to trace back. Our government is made up of a bunch of crooks trying to make us a third world country. While all along they get rich. Hilary wants free education and its not for the American students that’s for sure. I wish you all the best and just stop paying they can’t get blood out of a turnip.

    • Reply T. |

      Chad, the student loans are not bankruptable because they are guaranteed by the government (i.e. the American People, the tax payer). They are only forgiven in the event of death or total and permanent disability. Because of that, the government can garnish your wages and take your tax refund, and all without a court order. You have to pay the loans back, there’s no getting out of it. Otherwise, there would be no student loans. Actually, I’m for that. I don’t think we should give student loans. The massive amount of money infused into the system is why the price of college has gone through the roof in the last twenty years. They give these kids $100k+ to attend an undergraduate degree program and the universities see big money. It’s simple supply and demand. Remove the money from the system, and the price will fall. Free college is a joke. In Europe where they provide “free” college (Hint: Nothing is free) only the very intelligent or those with connections get to go. If you’re average, you get to be lower working class shop attendants, forever. Just sayin.

      PS. You want out of debt? See: Dave Ramsey.

So, what do you think ?