I have never been allowed to make principal payments, despite multiple and varied attempts. I have 2 loans, both federal (Direct Consolidated Unsubsidized and Direct Consolidated Subsidized). They're currently serviced by MOHELA. The last rep I spoke with said that the loans are owned by the Department of Education and they have regulations that indicate ALL payments MUST be applied first to late fees (which I've never had), then to interest, then to principal. So since interest accrues daily, there's always interest to be paid before principal. This has bothered me for the ~10 years I've been paying. I've been meaning to file a complaint with the CFPB, but haven't gotten around to it yet. If anyone has any advice, I'd love to hear it!
@SarcasticFringehead Yup. I'm not knocking the affordable care act, because I think overall it's a very good thing. But it seems to provide a huge disincentive for hiring full time workers (and also a convenient excuse for hiring part timers).
I think it's kind of a crapshoot. My wife is the product of tiger parents, and now she's a doctor. But her 3 younger siblings, separated by 5, 7 and 9 years are progressively "lower-achieving." Is that because her parents were less tiger-ish as they had more kids? Did they become more 'Americanized'? Was it a case of first born, high-achiever syndrome? Or is it because parents don't have as much of an impact on their kids' personalities as they hope? (as I'm finding out with our 2 young kids). Her upbringing has impacted our parenting philosophies though. She mainly wants our kids to be happy and well-adjusted. I, the product of a divorced, non-tiger mom, want our kids to be number 1 at everything. (luckily for them, her philosophy is the dominant one in their upbringing).
So if college teachers are getting paid a pittance, why is tuition rising so fast? Where's all the money going? Fancy dorm construction?
@grog Also, I really wish Intuit would come out with a new version for the Mac. I just know my Quicken 2007 for Mac is going to break one of these days. I've tried iBank4, but I don't like it. What do other Mac users use for personal finance?
Oh man, you've got me beat. We're about the same age, but my oldest Quicken transaction is only from 6/21/97 ($18.85 at Texaco gas station). Quicken nerds unite!
Wait, people actually take bookstore books and magazines into the bathroom??? I thought only George Costanza did that. I'm guessing they're put back on the shelves? Yuck.
Logan, RE: #6. If you're still grinding and haven't gotten one yet, you should think about an occlusal guard for sleep (maybe that's what the $300 was for?). You'll drool a lot and it can be kind of uncomfortable, but it stopped my grinding and wake-up headaches. Custom fit from a dentist are around $200-$300, but you can probably buy one at the drug store for around $20. Unless you were grinding during the day, in which case: tea, music and meditation.
Related to student loans, but slightly off topic:is anyone out there able to make principal-only payments on consolidated federal Stafford Direct Loans? Every extra payment I make, even if I write 'Principal Only' on my check, goes to interest first, then principal (and the extra payments don't extend my due date). The promissory notes indicate that "All payments are applied in the following order: charges and collection costs first, outstanding interest second, and outstanding principal last." Does anyone know a way around this? It's such a crock of shit! (BTW, I took out the loans from 1997-2001 and consolidated them in 2002. My interest rate is 3.375%, so refinancing doesn't seem like an option)
@travelmugs I really wish Amazon and others would have an option where I can choose to pay a couple of dollars more, and wait an extra day or two to ensure that my stuff was shipped from a warehouse that treated their workers like humans.