“Proper” way to close an account?

Now that MBNA is no more, what is the best way to close the account? By snail mail letter? By phone call? By both?

Does it look better if I close the now paid off account? Or leave it open and as there is no card just letting it go?

Deciding against trying for a 0% interest card, I will be socking it heavily to barclaycard. I want them GONE because of their crud. I ePaid $100.00 for today and will pay something like $75-120 per payday – depending on my hours and such- until it is gone!!!

My next 2 smaller bills are Target $307.66, which I plan to get gone quickly too… and a Kirby vacuum Financed through United Consumer finance ($260.00), I have only 5 more payments on it and then it’ll be gone too.

Target can be closed too, once I’ve paid it, and the vacuum is a set account which will be gone the day they are paid the final on Oct 30, 2016.

I was reading where someone said to notify the creditor that you wish it to be ON RECORD that YOU asked to close the account. That is why I am asking about the best way to do this.

It’ll be so good to be out from this dang trap, I feel so ‘clean’ right now having one down and finished on this day YAY!!!!

I closed QVC and Firestone by calling the Credit Bureaus individually and asking them to “close at consumers request”. That way it is worded that I initiated it instead of the Creditor initiating it. A week went by then I decided to call both Creditors. I told them that I told the Credit Bureaus and did not know if I should tell them (the Creditor) too. Both Creditors sent me letters stating that they closed the accounts at “consumers request”. They were reported “closed by consumer” within a month.

There are two schools of thought. On is the Dave Ramsey way — close everything to have no debt. The other is too keep them open to help the B/L ratio and hence the FICO Score. If you think that you would someday you would like to redo the interest on a Mortgage, or get a home equity loan or want to get “one” good card, I would leave it open to help the score B/L ratio. If the accounts are closed, they with still help for the overall age of the credit file info. Also if they are not used for 6 months, they become inactive and stop helping the score too. The longer the better.

It is up to you.

Federal Student Loans

I have become disabled and will be receiving SSDI soon. I need to get out of this troubling heay load of student loans but I see no way but a long dark tunnel. Can anyone help give some advice on how I can get out of this mess?

I think if you are considered permanently disabled federally guaranteed student loans are cancelled. You should check this out with US Department of Education and your state guarantee agency. Also, I am very sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but my understanding of student loans is that the law is TOTALLY on the side of the lender. Even if you file bandruptcy, you cannot get out of a student loan. If they lose track of your payments – it’s up to YOU to prove that you paid them. But even if you have proof, if they say you owe it, then you owe it until they say you don’t.

It seems you are at the mercy of the lender, unless there is something I don’t know about.

As they are ‘federal’ you could directly contact them now and ask about lower payments and even ask about a relief program for students who like you become disabled while in school, or after they’ve graduated. Not sure other than the same things us ‘no feds’ have had to do.

I’m sorry this happened to you, but hopefully the government programs will have some safety nets.

Unfortunately, this is not true. Let me look up the law and be certain. It will take a day. No, Lockhart, a very recent Supreme Court case decided this term, held that the debtor was liable.

I have to see a lawyer myself because of this ruling. Congress is ruthless with student debt. The Lockhart plaintiffs had wonderful sob stories. I did ask for a temporary hold when I became disabled. I was in denial. Of course, I’m talking about Social Security Disability benefits. I think because SSI is welfare it can’t be attached. They are withholding Social Security checks. I will look up the statutes and case law because it directly impacts me.

Horrified. Too scared to deal with it.

More info here – https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/repay-loans/forgiveness-cancellation

Junk mail problem

I work in the customer service department of a publishing company that publishes investment newsletters. Part of my job, besides subscription processing, is opening the daily mail. We frequently get envelopes stuffed with our promotional material, other people’s ads (but no good coupons which is what I can use), monopoly money, political articles, religious tracts, porno ads (which should be illegal!), confetti (which I had to clean up, no fun), all kinds of junk. My supervisor told me that she has personally opened mail that had a frog corpse in it, as well as one with a used feminine hygiene product in it. Now that’s just SICK.

If you want to know the truth, when you do stuff like that, it just makes you look like a moron with too much time on your hands. And it’s WRONG to make a company (even credit card companies) pay for useless mail that you send back. A simple “please take me off your mailing list and do not sell my name” is much more palatable than an envelope full of junk.

Also, if you send a form that has your name and address on it, it probably will be processed. For all we know, it’s a legitimate order (we offer billed subscriptions).

Just use common sense and common courtesy. If you don’t want it, kindly let the company know. Believe it or not, they do have real live people who work there, too.

If that is all it took. How come I keep getting the same crap from the same people even after telling them to take me off their list numerous times? As we sow so shall we reap!

Has it occurred to you and other mass mailers that NO ONE wants your junk? Helluva way to make a living. Where do I sign up for that?

I just wanted to reply to the comment Tom left to Ava.

( “Has it occurred to you and other mass mailers that NO ONE wants your junk? Helluva way to make a living. Where do I sign up for that?”)

This comment was uncalled for. No one has the right to attack her for job. Last I checked this group is here to help people in debt. The message at hand was how to get you name removed from mailing list and she was only trying to help out and let all of us know that stuffing the envelopes with junk and mailing them back does not help any of us. Just simply put remove from maililng list on it. We are not here to bash people for their situations or what they do, we are all here to try to help each other. Please keep this in mind.

Withdraw from 401k to lower expenses and debt? Long!

Hi, I hope someone can help me sort this out. I posted some time ago and got a lot of good encouragement!

The bottom line is, we barely make enough money to cover our expenses. Any house repairs, car repairs, etc. are a huge ordeal. I’m trying to get on track by establishing a separate savings account into which we can deposit a little each month to cover big expenses like car repairs, but we have so little extra to do this.

So one idea I am tossing around is to take a chunk out of the 401k from my husband’s old job to pay off some of our secured and unsecured debt.

We currently have $67k in the 401k; that’s the only savings we have.

We have two cars that we’re paying off; on one we owe $5k, the other is $10k. Selling them off might barely get us what we owe, so that wouldn’t work, as we wouldn’t be able to buy replacement cars. We do need the two cars. The car payments total $723/month.

We owe Discover card $5k which we are paying at $200/month.

We have a debt of $12k to our children’s private school which we are paying off at $400/month.

The total of these debts is $32k. The total monthly payments on all this is $1,333.

The way I see it, if we withdraw $32k plus another $4k to pay the penalties and taxes, we would be able to put about $800/month into long-term savings and CDs or retirement accounts, and have another $500 to cover our monthly expenses including big-ticket items.

Does this make sense, or am I treading into dangerous ground here? The 401k is currently earning about 4%+.

I’d really appreciate a reality check. Thanks a lot!

I think you should rethink making a 401k withdrawl. You’re taking a huge opportunity cost of what the money could become if you left it invested. I’m concerned that you’re only making a 4% return….there must be more investment options than the rate you’re getting which sound like a guaranteed account.

Please don’t take offense at my honesty because I’d rather tell the truth than try to pacify you. Though I have limited information, it appears that you have some “lifestyle” issues, e.g., private school. Proper education for children is a high priority for any good parent but at what expense?

A 401k withdrawl seems to be a quick fix for you. Have you examined how you ended up in debt?

It may be a little painful but why not make a family game out of additional ways that you can cut expenses. If you’ve cut back all you can and you’re still barely making it, you need to go after the dollars and downsize. For some, this means moving to a smaller home, etc. Americans are infected with an inability to delay gratification – we try to acquire the things in our 30s or 40s that it took our parents 30 years to acquire.

Food for thought…

I am in such a bad situation

Hello everyone. I am in such a bad situation. A little over a year ago I decided to sell my Townhouse and move into a house my father had been renting. I went from $550 mortage to a $1,000 mortgage. Very stupid on my part. At the time I had a loser of a boyfriend and he was not helping out at all. The first step was to get rid of him and find a roommate. After that was said and done, it seemed like no matter what I did I could not get caught up. In March me and my boyfriend, Russ, moved from the house into a small one bedroom apartment in order to sell the house.

Since then, I have lost my job and he has lost his. I am working part time with my father while I am looking for work. So as it stands we are living on $10.00/hr and dying. My car was repoed about two weeks ago and my father paid off my loan and put a new loan in his name so I could keep the car. My car insurance payment bounced due to NO funds in the account and is going to be canceled on the 16th and the car payment is due on the 15th for $280. I have many other debts that are sooooooo past due and in collections. I am at wits end and do not know who to call to help me out or what to do to get the collections off my back until I can start paying. I also have $12,000 in student loans that I had made arrangements to pay and now can not. Please help.

Just to get back to you, I can assure you that your situation is not uncommon. Hang in there and keep reading as many of the posts on this site. They will help – if you let them.

To become financially stable, pay off debts and work at further financial goals in your life, takes dedication and work. It gets easier as time goes on. I’ve been there. My life was a lot like yours about nine years ago. It took my almost 5 years to get out debt and break free of really poor budgeting and spending habits and mindsets. I learned a lot and wouldn’t trade that for the world.

I’m not so much into all the technicalities of financial planning, because if a person doesn’t change their mindset, emotionally and mentally about money, spending and budgeting… all the technical stuff won’t help.

Let us all know how things are going or if you have any specific questions about how to get out of debt. There are so mnay things you can start doing to change your situation. Don’t dispair.

BTW: Do you have a degree (for the student loans, you have to pay off?) Also, you may consider finding another quick part-time job to supplement the one you already have, while looking for that fulltime better paying job. Your boyfriend (who is sharing living space with you) should do that to. If he can’t or won’t – maybe he is just another lazy deadbeat. I use to attract those kind of deadbeat boyfriends myself – and was in denial about it.