Congress voted on and passed Feb. 1 the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 that included massive cuts to federal student loan programs. The $11.9 billion in student loan cuts, including changes in laws regarding student loan consolidation, will negatively impact those students seeking a college education and others seeking to consolidate their higher interest loans. The industry expects a rush of students seeking to consolidate at the current low rates that are set to increase on July 1.The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, S. 1932, was narrowly approved Feb. 1 by the House of Representatives. Passing by a two-vote margin of 216-214, S. 1932 was signed into public law Feb. 8 by President Bush, thereby approving the $11.9 billion in student loan cuts over the next five years.Students and graduates now are in jeopardy. With college costs increasing every year and the forthcoming higher interest rates on student loan consolidation, college students are rushing to consolidate before the July 1 rate increase.Student Loans Take the Hardest HitThe cuts to federal student loans are the worst among cuts to other federal programs including Medicaid, Medicare and food stamps.A majority of the legislation’s provisions to student loans will take effect on July 1 and others will be implemented over time. Some provisions include an increase to 6.8 percent for federal Stafford Loans, from rates as low as 4.7 percent. PLUS fixed interest rates will jump to 8.5 percent, from 7.9 percent. The legislation leaves consolidation loans current fixed rate in place.Consolidate Student Loans Before July 1 Rate IncreaseWith student loan consolidation rates set to skyrocket on July 1, now is the time for students and graduates to consolidate, according to NextStudent, the Phoenix-based education funding company. Students and graduates now are urged to consolidate as current consolidation rates can be as low as 2.75 percent with benefits applied. Other incentives to consolidate include a longer payment term, one monthly payment and no prepayment penalties.The following are other provisions affecting student loan consolidation that take effect July 1, 2006. Students and graduates should be aware of the new regulations so that they now can take action:Consolidation Loan Changes- Single holder rule is not changed.- Eliminates in-school and spousal consolidation options.- A subsequent consolidation loan may be made in the DL Program only if the FFELP borrower wishes to obtain an income contingent repayment plan and, the borrower is trying to avoid default, but that is conditioned by the requirement that such a loan has been submitted to a guaranty agency for what used to be called “preclaims assistance” but is now labeled as “default aversion.”- Also, in the Conf. Rpt. is a provision providing that only if a FFELP borrower has an application for a consolidation loan rejected by a lender or the application is rejected because the borrower wanted income-sensitive repayment terms, then the borrower can receive a direct consolidation loan.- A borrower with a defaulted loan can receive a DL consolidation loan to resolve the default.- Unless otherwise specified the terms of DL consolidation loans are the same as FFELP consolidation loans.Approval of the Deficit Reduction Act brings major cuts to student loans and a change in regulations regarding student loan consolidation. Although the legislation has changed to the detriment of those seeking a higher education, students and graduates still have the option to consolidate before the interest rate is set to increase on July 1.
Why should you take out a second mortgage or a home equity line of credit instead of refinancing?Well…You Shouldn’t!Why Not?1. Second Mortgages usually have an interest rant that is twice or even three times as high as your first mortgage rate. You can refinance instead and keep a very low rate. In the long run a second mortgage will just cost you money in interest charges.2. Home equity lines of credit are designed for mortgage account executives (salespeople) to sell you on using it like a credit card attached to your home. They will try to convince you to use it over and over again.3. A refinance loan is better for the equity in your home. Very few companies will refinance your home at 100% of it’s value without forcing you to take out a second mortgage. You don’t want to use 100% of your equity because that means you no longer have that equity to fall back on in emergency situations.4. Second Mortgages and Home Equity lines of credit are designed to provide account executives (salespeople) with another tool to sway you into putting another commission in their pocket.5. Your equity is a precious thing and should not be used for unnecessary add ons or impulse buys. If you don’t need it and there is even a slight chance you can’t afford it, then don’t get a second mortgage to buy it.The only reason that I would ever recommend a second mortgage or a home equity line of credit is in an emergency situation. Only when there is no other option and you must take out a loan would I recommend either one of these options.
Are you looking to consolidate credit card or other debt? Do you have bad credit history? There are many options available online nowadays to help you consolidate your debt. Whether you are wanting to consolidate credit card debt or other kinds of debt, it can be overwhelming searching online to find the best ones for your situation. Here is a short overview of what kind of debt services are available online.If you are looking for a loan to consolidate your debt, you will need to qualify for the loan, just like any other loan. If you have a home, you may be able to get an equity loan using your equity or even go over the appraised value of your home in order to get the financing you need.You may be able to qualify for an unsecured loan, which can consolidate your debt with one low monthly payment with no ties to any of your assets.There are other companies that will help you manage your debt without having to use another loan. These companies usually charge you a fee and then help negotiate lower interest rates with your creditors and manage your monthly payments. There are various ways to do this and every company is different. Usually these techniques will save you money to start paying down the principle on your credit balances.Some of these companies are definitely worth the small monthly fee, and can save you much more than they charge. But, some of these companies are not legitimate and can take your monthly payments and keep them for a month or more before they make your payments (collecting interest on the money all the while), causing you to accrue late fees and possibly collections. These companies can actually cost you money and make your situation worse.Be careful when searching for debt consolidation companies to work with. Make sure they are legitimate, long standing companies before you sign on the dotted line. To see our list of recommended debt consolidation lenders click on the link below.Consolidating your debt can provide great relief and breathing room when it comes time to pay your bills. Sometimes, when you are up to the hilt in debt, it can be so overwhelming just keeping up with your bills that it can be difficult to think about ways to start paying the debt down.To see our list of recommended debt consolidation service companies, visit this page:
Recommended Bad Credit Debt Consolidation Services and Lenders.
Student Loan ConsolidationYou worked hard. You studied late nights and spent hours in the library doing research. You took some grueling exams. Now you’re finally through with college and out in the working world. Everything’s going great, but your monthly student loan payment is huge! It cuts into your entertainment budget. You can’t even afford to go out to a nice dinner or take a trip. You sure as heck can’t save a down payment for a house, and you’re still throwing your money away renting that little apartment. What can you do? There’s got to be a way to improve your situation.There may be a way to improve it. You may be able to save a substantial amount of your hard earned salary every month by consolidating your student loans. Then again, this may not be the right choice for you. “Great!”, you say, “I could really use a way to save some money every month.” If you’re like most people however, you know little about loan consolidation, student or otherwise.Student loan consolidation is a bit different from consolidating your high interest credit card or auto loans. You don’t need to own a home or other real estate to use for collateral for one thing. Your student loans are different from most other loans, they are guaranteed by the federal government. There are two main types of student loans.In one program, the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FELP), students receive money through guaranteed bank loans. This student loan program has been around since the 1960’s and many students have taken advantage of it to finance their education. With FELP loans, the lenders are banks or other financial institutions, who loan money to the student. These institutions make a profit from the interest on the loan, while at the same time being protected against loan default by a federal government guarantee.With a newer program, 1993’s Federal Direct Loan Program, the money is loaned to student directly through the federal government. This is more affordable for the taxpayer because the federal government is collecting the interest and using it to help underwrite the loan program. The loans are actually provided to students by various companies under direct government contract.The interest rates for both types of loans are fixed and the individual school decides which type of program, FELP or Fixed, they will offer. The FELP is more common, as it allows more services to be provided directly by the lending institution to assist students with their loans. There are possible changes brewing. Rep. George Miller, D-Calif, directed the GAO to investigate ways for the federal government to save money in the student loan program. The GAO’s report indicated that the government could save substantial money, possibly as much as $3B a year, by using the Direct student loan program exclusively.Even if changes are made, you will still be able to consolidate your student loans. Why would you want to? You can save substantial money, that’s why. Consolidating all you student loans allows you to lock in lower interest rates on all your loans. The interest rate is adjusted each year, and remains fixed for the year. For the 2006 fiscal year (this year) it is at 4.7% for student currently attending school. This is set to increase to 6.8% for fiscal year 2007. This rate increase goes into effect on July 1 2006. PLUS loans will increase from 6.1% to 8.5%. Needless to say, this is a substantial interest rate increase. Avoiding it will save you hundreds of dollars each month.As an example, if you are currently in school and have $45,000 in outstanding debt at the current rates, you are paying about $471/month. If you consolidate, you could reduce this payment to only about $300/month. There is an incentive to consolidate now, if you can benefit from student loan consolidation. Because of a consolidation deadline, each year there is a rush to get the proper paperwork filed by the due date. Typically congress allows a grace period, so if you have filed the paperwork, but it has not been processed, you still receive your consolidation loan at the existing interest rate.This year, because of the 2005 Budget Reconciliation Act, you may not get to enjoy the grace period. There is a strong chance that if you don’t have the completed loan in hand by the deadline, it will just be too bad. You will still get your loan, but have to pay the increased interest rate from 2007. To illustrate how this can affect you, take our $45,000 example above. Rather than enjoying the $300/month payment, you could find yourself paying almost $350/month!You need to act now! Student loan consolidating may or may not be the right choice for you, but you need to know. The sooner you determine the correct course of action, the sooner you can get going. If you wait, it may just be too late.
In order to meet their immediate financial constraints, many people avail of loans. People with a good credit rating are considered eligible by many financial companies as they are considered ‘low risk’. These customers are offered loans or other forms of credit easily and at low interest rates. Many people find these offers too good to resist and eventually land up in deep debt. Such debtors may find the whole process of debt management quite overwhelming. To help such customers, many debt management programs are available that allow them to chalk out a plan to come out of debt. Long-term debt consolidation loans are for people who do not want to spend a large amount of money on getting a program and would rather use it to decrease their debts.Organizations such as banks, finance companies, credit unions, and debt consolidation companies offer long-term debt consolidation loans that help debtors improve their financial position. The focus of most long-term debt loans is to reduce the interest rates on the debts, as the major portion of the payment is applied to the interest and not to the principal. Usually, long-term consolidation loans are the preferred option as they lower the amount of installment that is paid monthly.It is advisable to look for a loan with lower interest than what the individual is currently paying. However, it is possible to get a loan at the same rate, with lower monthly installments by choosing a long-term loan. It is possible to choose either a secured or an unsecured loan for debt consolidation. Secured loans will generally have lower rates and the tax advantage of writing off interest payments. In secured loans, the person would have to offer a collateral.Long-term debt consolidation loans offer a financial advantage. It is desirable as well as an important component of any loan as it helps in lowering the monthly installment. There are numerous standard debt provisions that are included in long-term debt agreements. These specify definite criteria of satisfactory record keeping and reporting by the borrower.Long-term debt agreements also include certain restrictive contractual clauses. These types of loans put some operating and financial constraints on the borrower. There might be clauses that could prohibit the borrowers from entering into certain types of leases to limit additional fixed-payment obligations. At times, there are agreements that specifically require the borrowed funds to be spent on the declared financial need.Both the standard debt provisions as well as the restrictive agreements help to protect the lenders interests. It is seen that if the borrower violates any standard or restrictive provision, the lender can demand immediate repayment of the debt. The long-term debt agreement specifies the interest rate, the timing of interest payments, and the amount of monthly payments. Several factors affect the interest rate of long-term debt such as loan maturity, loan size, and the credit history of the borrower. The Internet is one of the sources that can help an individual in finding the most suitable long-term consolidation loan. By searching online for a debt consolidator, the borrower has access to hundreds of companies, which can help manage finances and control the person’s debt.
It is a blessing for a student if he can make an easy and regular payments of his student loans; this only means his road to pursuing his college degree can be done with a lot less stress and hindrances. However, this is not usually the case for many borrowers. More often than not, monthly installments are not paid late, if not paid at all. Hence, with the number of loans that a borrower has to worry about every month, he has to decide fast and just get a student loan consolidation to take care of his financial woes. Consolidation means merging the old loans, turning them into one cheap monthly payment. Via this road, you find yourself taking care of a much easy-to-pay new debt and at the same time, ridding of the multiple loans that had created for you financial havoc all this time. And with the elimination of the old debts, you are in effect erasing the problem of dealing with the high interest rates that go with them.However, students must be careful about getting student debt consolidation. It should be emphasized that there are two types of college loans, the private and the government ones. If it so happens that you have both these types under your names, it is a must that you consolidate your loans into two groups – private and federal student loan consolidation.All kinds of government loans such as Perkins, Stafford and PLUS Loans should be consolidated under a government student debt consolidation loan. Why do we need to separate the federal from the private when consolidating? This is because the federal loans have lower rates of interest? If in case, they are consolidated together with the private ones, the advantage of having low rates will be disregarded. While your old government debts have different payment schedules and terms, once they are consolidated, there will only be a single repayment schedule leading to a much easier management of your debt. On the other hand, private debt consolidation loan should be employed when we want to merge private debts, and such loan can be availed as either secured or unsecured. Always remember, federal and private loans never mix as far as debt consolidation is concerned.
The question many of us are asking these days is whether to refinance our mortgage, or wait for better terms or a better rate. While no one can accurately forecast where rates are headed, there are some steps you can take that will help you decide whether to refinance your mortgage now:First: How much lower are the rates than what you are paying on your existing mortgage? Keeping in mind, especially if you are writing off some mortgage interest on your taxes, that a slight drop in rates may not make it worthwhile to refinance.Second: If the rate is significantly lower, you may want to check what your monthly savings will be. When doing this, make sure you calculate the new mortgage payment after your refinance without factoring in any years you are adding on to the end. For example, if you owe 27 more years on your current mortgage, calculate your new payment using the new rate and the amount you are refinancing only over 27 years. Otherwise you might think you are lowering your payment more than you actually are, when you are really just adding years onto the end.Third: So now you know how much you’d save each month on a refinance, but how much are the closing costs going to be for your refinance? You need to be sure that paying any closing costs (including points) are worthwhile. Here’s some simple math: If you are paying $2500 in closing costs, and the reduced rate saves you $500 each year, you’ll need to stay where you are for five years to reap the benefits. For many, closing costs are worthwhile, but for others who know they will need to upgrade, or have a job situation that can mean having to move, closing costs may eliminate any benefit of the refinanced mortgage.Fourth: If you’ve arrived here, you have probably figured that you are saving enough over time to make your new rate and the closing costs worth moving forward. One last consideration: Do you think you will refinance again? This one may be close to impossible to answer easily, because who knows where rates are going. But, if you think they might go down, make sure you know what your lender’s terms are as far as refinancing. Some lenders will not refinance a mortgage for 90 days after the close of the one you are doing now. Make sure you are getting enough savings to not worry about that.Fifth, and finally: One last word of caution: Once you lock you may have to pay fees (e.g. for an appraisal) that might not be recoverable if the loan does not go through. One of the biggest issues you could run into is that your appraisal is not high enough to qualify you for the mortgage. You may want to carefully look at comparable sales in your neighborhood, or, even better, talk to someone who is aware of the real estate market in your area, to be sure that your home will be appraised at a high enough value to meet the criteria of your loan.If you’ve made it this far, you may be inclined to go forward and refinance. Best of luck! Information in this article should not take the place of a conversation with a finance and possible tax professional who is aware of your unique situation.
You have surely heard about debt consolidation through home equity. Many debt advisors suggest applying for an equity loan in order to use the money to pay off consumer credit card debt. Though the idea of reducing debt by unifying the payment and replacing unsecured debt with a secured loan may sound tempting, there are other factors that should be considered. There is a big question mark as to the convenience of resorting to loans to pay off consumer debt.What Is The Purpose?Via obtaining one of these loans you can get enough funds to cancel outstanding consumer debt. When compared to credit card debt. These loans provide cheaper financing because the interest rates charged are more than significantly lower. Therefore, you would be exchanging expensive debt for inexpensive debt thus reducing the amount of your monthly payments by up to 60% or even more.Moreover, your debt will be unified into a single loan with a single monthly payment. It all seems very promising as you obtain a debt reduction and simplify your bills too. However, not all debt advisors agree about this. Though most of them admit that there are benefits to be obtained from consolidating with these loans, there are also many among them that point out that the drawbacks can overrun the benefits.What Are The Objections?The main objection about exchanging consumer debt for a home equity loan or line of credit is that by doing so you are paying off credit card debt which is unsecured with a secured form of finance. This implies that you are increasing the risk for you and decreasing it for the lender. Why? Because the lender now has an asset that can be subject to foreclosure in case you fail to repay the money owed.The property that provides the equity is used as collateral for the loan thus, securing its repayment. This extra assurance is what helps you obtain a lower interest rate and more flexible loan conditions. But, in turn, it risks your property which can be sold in a public auction in case you default on the equity loan. Advisors point out that if you are currently unable to afford your monthly payments, chances are that you may fail to afford the loan payments too and collecting will be a lot easier for the lender with a secured form of financing.Is It Advisable Or Not?As usual, there is a bit of truth on both sides. You can really free up a lot of cash by consolidating your consumer debt with a home equity loan but the consequences can be disastrous if you fail to repay the loan. The asset can be subject to foreclosure and it is also true that unsecured debt can be negotiated with the lenders or credit card issuers to obtain similar or equal results than with consolidation.However, what these advisors fail to point out is that the lenders have legal actions to recover their money even if the debt is unsecured. It may be more expensive and it may take longer but they can still endanger your property by taking legal actions to recover their investment. Therefore, the use of home equity to pay off credit card debt should be considered as an option but taking the necessary precautions. You should just make sure that the resulting payments will not imply too many sacrifices and put your property at risk.
It is discovered that US students are leading all over the world when it comes to taking advantage of student loan consolidation interest rates. These days, thousands upon thousands of college students are applying for college loan debt consolidation hoping that they obtain the repayment relief that they expect from these financial loan schemes.As it is, college loan debt consolidation programs are one of the best ways by which one can have relief from his many student loans. They are effective in helping borrowers get control over their burdensome loans and provide them with the means to plan an efficient budget and repayment scheme.For the best type of student loan consolidation interest rates, you can find them on the internet. All you have to do is contact the lending companies that are willing to give you affordable repayment plans. Always look for those who take time to share great financial advice, especially on how to effectively handle and manage your multiple college loans.Of course, when finally the student borrower applies for student loan consolidation, it is advisable for him to first check and study the terms and conditions that are presented to him by the college debt and loan provider. Do not simply accept the first program offered to you. Make sure that the interest rate is low as you are on the lookout for the minimum amount of payment that you need to pay every month. Shun away from lenders who are quick to present to you a variety of attractive consolidation program, but are not willing to offer you interest rates that are low and affordable.
Though there are no deadlines in federal loan consolidation programs, there are certain things to keep in mind:o Your loans have to be fully disbursed to be eligible for Federal Consolidation Loan program.o You are no longer enrolled in school.o You are actively repaying your loan (including deferment or forbearance), or are in your six-month post-graduate grace period.o Your minimum consolidated loan amount is $10,000.The best time to go for student loan debt consolidation of your federal student loans is when you still are in your grace period, because of the in-school lower rate of interest.Every student has his or her reasons for going in for student loan debt consolidation, and so would you. Look at some of the reasons why you should go for student loan debt consolidation of your federal student loans:o Fixed rates of interesto Lower monthly paymentso Payment incentives that saves you moneyo Single payment each month in place of multiple payments to different loan issuers.o New or renewed defermentsYou will need the following information when applying for your student loan debt consolidation of your federal student loans:o The balances and interest rates of your current eligible federal student loans.o The names and addresses of the companies that hold or service your federal student loans. These are the companies that handle billing, collections, deferments, etc. of your federal student loans.o The names and addresses of two personal references in the United States.Student loan debt consolidation of federal student loans have a fixed rate of interest. The fixed rate is calculated by the weighted average of the interest rates of the individual loans being consolidated. These are rounded up to the nearest 1/8 of a percent, up to the maximum of 8.25 percent.