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Consolidation

Started by saraandherfoxes, October 18, 2016, 09:24:38 am

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saraandherfoxes

October 18, 2016, 09:24:38 am Last Edit: November 06, 2018, 07:31:29 am by AndreaT
Hello Everyone,

I'm writing to get some advice whether or not to stay in this situation or if it is actually better to make a change.
I fell for this company that claimed to consolidate my loans. I was drowning in debt even though I was actively communicating with my loan service they were not giving me much assistance in lowering my monthly payments. So there were a lot of ads popping up everywhere and I've been reading up on consolidating my payments through the department of education and somehow ended up with a company called Aiding Student Relief. I talked to them and they actually gave me a number I can actually do. Yes they asked for a fee and yes that number to pay said fee was even better than what I was currently having to pay off my debt at a monthly basis so I fell for it. The company isn't fraudulent but as this article states (https://thecollegeinvestor.com/11616/consolidate-your-student-loans/)
I do not have to go through all this mess and just consolidate my loans on my own. However I had just found this article and this forum today (10/18/2016) and I am halfway through my payments of their fee before making payments of my student loans of a promised $19 a month. Now if this is true I do not know for sure. I looked at the contract I signed and see that I can cancel it but I won't get my money back. At this point I don't care I just want to pay the right people so I can get my credit score back on track and with that my life. At this point I have other companies calling me claiming the same thing or loan providers saying I owe them money (it's different ones every time) so I do not know who to trust anymore.
If there is anyone here that can give me some advice I would gladly take it into consideration.

-Thank you

TheCollegeInvestor

October 18, 2016, 09:57:28 am #1 Last Edit: November 06, 2018, 07:30:20 am by AndreaT
I know the "easy" way out is to pay this company and hopefully move forward, but you said a lot of stuff here and it sounds like you need to really figure out what is going on.

First, you need to get a grasp on your loans. What loans do you have? Federal or private loans? How many? What balances?
- Go to the National Student Loan Data System and see your Federal loans: https://www.nslds.ed.gov/nslds/nslds_SA/
- Check your credit report at annualcreditreport.com and see what private loans you might have

Once you have a clear understanding of everything, it's easier to make decisions on your loans. Remember, student loan consolidation won't change your payment, it just combines your Federal loans into a single loan to make it easier to manage.

You can change your payment plan, and there are a lot of options for Federal loans. Do you research here: https://thecollegeinvestor.com/the-definitive-guide-to-student-loan-debt-2016/

Remember, even the lowest cost income-based repayment plan (PAYE or RePAYE) will still have your payment 10% of your discretionary income.

Finally, once you know exactly what you want, you need to decide whether to proceed with this company or do it yourself via StudentLoans.gov or by calling your lender.