Wednesday, June 11, 2008

College Life

It's a rough life, but somebody (anybody who wants a decent paying job) has got to do it.

Jennie and I have discovered over the past couple weeks what a pain in the butt it can be to try to get through all the financial struggles that a young married college couple can have. Not only do we have to pay rent, make car payments, pay the utilities and pay for insurance, we also have to pay for a lovely little thing called education.

Since money was a little tight, Jennie and I decided to apply for a student loan through our bank thinking this would be a great way for us to just get through the summer without having to pay our expenses out of pocket. Like I said, this sounded like a great idea until we discovered a few minor details.

My parents had gotten us all pumped up about being able to apply for food stamps. My dad said, "I've paid taxes for the last 30 years so you could get food stamps." But, guess what--Apparently the state of Idaho thinks that Melaleuca is paying me a little too well to qualify for food stamps. We're starving with all the things we have to pay for but, still, we don't qualify.

It's things like this that are making me want to change banks. When we initially applied for the loan, it appeared that its main purpose was to act as a supplementary cash flow to make up the gaps that federal and school loans didn't make up. So, we, being the impulsive people we are, applied for the loan and even got my dad to cosign for us. About 5 days later, I was on the phone with the bank checking on the status of the loan. They told me that all they needed was my school schedule..... Wait. I was under the impression that I didn't have to be in school in order to get this loan. That's the whole reason we applied for this loan instead of any other one.

So, I went about trying to get registered for a class. I've been sitting in on a Chinese 202 class this summer with the intention of learning the principles so I can have my teacher waive it later and I can move on without having to pay for the class. I went to the registration office to try and get this worked out. I had some fees to pay, and once they were done, I tried again. My teacher couldn't add me to the class because it's MIDTERMS! Apparently they shut the system down for about a week so they can do grades. So, after talking to the registration office again, I decided to get registered for a simple 1 credit class in the second block. I contacted the bank with my schedule. They sent the check the next morning.

Upon receiving the check last night, we discovered the interest rate and the payment schedule. If we were to make the scheduled minimum payments, we would be paying (are you ready for this?) almost three times more than the loan is for!!!!!

Bank Man, thank you for your generosity in helping my wife and I through this hard time. I'm sure after you collect, you'll have no grief over losing a customer. BTW, we're going to get another loan at a much lower interest rate and pay you back. Sorry to burst your bubble. You're not getting that much money out of me.

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