Posts Tagged: ‘forbearance’

What you need to Know about Student Loan Interest

November 14, 2017 Posted by kingcade

Most college students are unaware how loan interest or capitalization works, according to a recent study.  Opting to delay payments after college or graduate school can determine how much you pay over the lifetime of your student loans.

When the interest on a student loan capitalizes, the accrued interest is added to the principal balance, which is the original amount borrowed.  For that reason, the interest charges increase because it is now based on the new higher principal.

Here are 5 examples of when capitalization occurs with federal student loans:

  1. Not making interest payments during school and during the grace period. For undergraduate and graduate unsubsidized Stafford loans, interest begins to accrue immediately after the loan is dispersed.  Subsidized loans are the best option for students, where the federal government pays the interest while the borrower is in school.
  2. Switching from an income-driven repayment plan. It is important borrowers know that just because they are enrolled in an income-driven repayment, Income-Based Repayment Plan or Pay As You Earn (PAYE), this may not be covering all of the interest accruing on the loan. While some income-driven plans stop capitalizing interest after 10 percent of the original loan balance has been paid, there are consequences from switching out of these plans. For example, unpaid accrued interest will capitalize when a borrower no longer qualifies for a financial hardship, fails to provide proper documentation for the plan’s annual enrollment or exits the plan.
  3. Forbearance or deferment. A borrower needs to be careful when selecting these options and know the consequences. Interest is still accumulating on student loans even though the loans are in forbearance or deferment.  This loan interest can accumulate quickly.
  4. Consolidation of federal loans. Consolidating multiple loans into one direct loan, means you are creating an entirely new loan.  It is important to consolidate right after graduating as a measure to reduce the capitalization interest that comes with federal loan consolidation.  Waiting longer to do so typically increases the principal balance.
  5. Defaulting on a student loan. Interest that was outstanding at the time of default will be capitalized.  The principal amount will not only become larger, but the entire balance will be due and payable immediately.

Click here to read more on this story.

For borrowers who are struggling with student loan debt, relief options are available. Many student loan borrowers are unaware that they have rights and repayment options available to them, such as postponement of loan payments, reduction of payments or even a complete discharge of the debt. It is important you contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade Garcia McMaken has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade Garcia McMaken website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

 

Hurricane Relief Options Available for FHA Mortgages

September 28, 2017 Posted by kingcade

South Florida homeowners are receiving a much needed break when it comes to their mortgages, following the devastation left by Hurricane Irma.  Lenders are offering financial relief in the form of freezing foreclosures, putting mortgage payments on hold and offering special financing options to rebuild damaged homes in the area.

Our office has been getting a number of calls about this and we want to clarify the relief options available and steps you can take to qualify for these government programs.

  1. Call your lender directly. This is the safest route to confirming that an assistance offer is the real thing.  Before the call, gather as much information about your financial situation and mortgage as possible.  It is important that you tell the lender what you can afford to pay and your current financial situation.
  1. Know your options. Many homeowners who have been affected by Hurricane Irma are eligible for forbearance, which means the lender will suspend payments for up to 12 months (especially if you have a government-backed mortgage through Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac). You will not incur late fees or have a delinquency reported to any of the major credit bureaus. Many lenders are currently offering 90 days of mortgage forbearance in affected areas Florida, with an option for some homeowners to extend further based on their situation. If you have a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loan, you are eligible for forbearance, a loan modification or a 90-day delay in foreclosure, to allow you to get current on your payments.
  1. Proceed with caution. Be cautious of calls from people claiming to offer mortgage relief on behalf of a government agency, or asking for fees upfront for a loan or service. Unfortunately, this has also provided an opportunity for scammers to come forward using social media and cleverly crafted emails to prey on vulnerable homeowners in financial need. Know this: Government employees never charge you a fee to help get you a benefit or service and will never ask for your payment or financial information.

 

Here are some additional FHA Programs available for hurricane victims:

  • HUD recently granted a 90-day suspension on foreclosures for mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration. There are more than 280,000 FHA-insured Florida homeowners living in these impacted counties. For more details call: 1-800-569-4287.
  • For homeowners or renters who have lost their homes, HUD’s Section 203(h) program gives FHA insurance to disaster victims who have to rebuild or purchase another house. The loans come with no down payment and greater forgiveness of low credit scores. For more details call: 1-800-569-4287.

 

If your lender is not proactively offering forbearance or other help, you can go directly to the websites of the Federal Housing Finance Agency or the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to see what type of relief you might qualify for, and bring this up to your lender.

We hope and pray you and your family made it through the storm safely and our community is quickly restored. During this time of recovery, our office is open and we are here if you need us. If you have any questions on this topic or are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade Garcia McMaken, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade Garcia McMaken, P.A. website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Related Resources:

http://www.bankrate.com/mortgages/hurricane-victims-can-get-a-break-on-mortgage-payments/

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/weather/hurricane/os-hurricane-irma-aid-20170914-story.html

The Costs of Deferring Your Student Loans

August 17, 2017 Posted by kingcade

Many Americans are struggling to pay back their student loans.  According to a recent study, 30 percent of direct loans are in deferment.  When a borrower defers a student loan, temporarily suspending repayment due to unemployment or other financial hardship- the interest on the loan continues to accrue.  If no payments are made during the deferment period, the interest will capitalize and be added to the total amount of the loan.

Interest rates are expected to rise in 2018.  Undergrads will pay 4.45 percent on loans distributed from July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018, which is up from 3.76 last year. There are limited time frames for how long a loan can be in deferment.  Deferring your student loans can also eliminate your eligibility for certain public forgiveness programs.

Deferring your student loans can be costly.  Here are some alternatives:

  • Utilize income-driven repayment plans offered by your lender;
  • Refinance your student loans;
  • See if your employer offers loan assistance to employees;
  • Forbearance, which suspends student loan payments is typically at the loan holder’s discretion. These specific qualifications are detailed on the government’s Federal Student Aid

Click here to read more on this story.

For borrowers who are struggling with student loan debt, relief options are available. Many student loan borrowers are unaware that they have rights and repayment options available to them, such as postponement of loan payments, reduction of payments or even a complete discharge of the debt. It is important you contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

6 Things College Grads Should Be Doing About Their Student Loans

July 27, 2016 Posted by kingcade

On average, college graduates have approximately $37,000 in student loan debt, according to Cappex.com. Most student loan companies allow students a grace period after graduation of six months to one year before they start requiring payments. However, it is important to get your student loans in order immediately after graduation so that you know what to expect down the road.

Below are six things recent grads should be doing to prepare for their student loan repayment.

  1. Get organized. Most students graduate with anywhere between eight and ten separate student loans. As a result, many tend to lose track of their total loan amount by the time they graduate. If you have only taken out loans through the federal government, you can find everything you need to know on the National Student Loan Database System website. This site will simplify your loans in terms of breaking down exactly how much you owe and when you took out each loan. However, if you have also taken out private student loans, it is best to check your credit report. This will show you the status of each loan, the date you opened it and your remaining balances. Also, make sure you note the interest rates for each individual loan.
  2. Determine the Best Monthly Payment for You. Now that you know how much you owe, it is time to determine how much you can afford to pay each month. If you do not select a repayment option, your lender will put you on a standard 10-year repayment plan. When deciding how much you can afford to pay each month, it is best to select highest payment you can afford. This will potentially save you thousands in interest. However, if it means you cannot afford to put money into a retirement fund or a savings account, opt for a lower payment.
  3. Stay on Top of Your Payments. Although student loans take longer to default than other debts, it will negatively impact your credit store if you miss a few payments.
  4. Be Strategic in Paying Off Your Loans. If you have extra money to put toward your student loans, put it toward the loan with the highest interest rate. Also, if you pay extra one month, contact the company to be sure they put the additional amount toward the principal balance. Otherwise, they may treat it as the next month’s payment.
  5. Consider Consolidation. Before you consolidate your loans, make sure you take your interest rates into account. If you have some loans with higher interest rates than others, it might not be the best move to consolidate. If you combine your loans and pay extra some months, you can no longer put the additional amount toward the loan with the higher interest rate.
  6. Educate Yourself on Deferment and Forbearance. Deferment refers to the period when your payments are placed on temporary hold. Sometimes interest does not accrue during the deferment period. Deferment is typically available to students who have enrolled in grad school, are unemployed or experiencing economic hardship. On the other hand, forbearance is what you apply for if you are ineligible for a deferment. This is a time period, typically 12 months, when interest is accrued and added to the principal balance.

Click here to read more on this story.

For borrowers who are struggling with student loan debt, relief options are available. Many student loan borrowers are unaware that they have rights and repayment options available to them, such as postponement of loan payments, reduction of payments or even a complete discharge of the debt. It is important you contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.

Student Debt in America: Extend with a Smile, Collect with a Fist

December 4, 2015 Posted by kingcade

The student loan debt crisis is nothing new, but the interest accruing on these loans represents a new threat.  Of the 43.3 million borrowers with outstanding federal student loans, 1.8 percent, or 779,000 people, owes $150,000 or more.  And 346,000 owe more than $200,000.  A Missouri high school teacher and mother of four owes the federal government a staggering $410,000!  She took out loans for her undergraduate education, but also for law school, which she was unable to complete after becoming ill with a life-threatening autoimmune disease that required a lengthy hospitalization.  Today, the interest has accumulated to twice the original principal.  The monthly loan payments of $2,750 will stretch for 30 years.

With her forbearance options exhausted, the loan servicer has threatened to “come after her,” garnishing her wages and eventually her social security.   This woman’s story reveals the deep contradictions in the federal government’s approach to student loans.  People have always struggled with debt and access to capital is what fuels the modern economy.  Borrowing for college is often seen as a good idea because it represents an investment in a person’s future potential.  However, borrowing is risky and people often do a poor job- particularly young people- of properly weighing the interests of their present and future selves.

The private enterprise system is built to limit over-borrowing by sharing risk between lenders and borrowers.  Lenders examine credit and income histories and ask for collateral that can be repossessed in case of default.  Because most loans can be discharged in bankruptcy, lenders share on the cost of default.   But federal student loans do not work that way.   “No Cash? No Credit? No Problem!” is essentially the Department of Education’s policy on student loans.

The number of active borrowers enrolled in college has declined roughly nine million today from about 12 million in 2010, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.  But the total amount of outstanding student loan debt continues to increase, because many borrowers are struggling to pay back their older loans.

Click here to read more on this story.

For borrowers who are struggling with student loan debt, relief options are available. Many student loan borrowers are unaware that they have rights and repayment options available to them, such as postponement of loan payments, reduction of payments or even a complete discharge of the debt. It is important you contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.