Loans

May 29, 2008

In the last post, I wasn’t yet worried about my loan coming through. I have a record of when I called PNC Bank and for what, and as I recall, I was told by three different people on two different days that my documents had been received and my loan was being processed. See, I called three different times because I’d learned that people are incompetent. I don’t know that I blame them, that have boring, menial jobs, but so far I’m not sure they received any training.

I was supposed to have an answer on May 20. So on May 20 I called PNC and asked for my answer. They informed me that they had not received the cover sheet for my credit agreement. No, there’s nothing on there to sign or fill out, but I didn’t send it back… so my loan hasn’t started to be processed. Additionally, the wait period increased from 5 to 10 days for an answer. So I called my dad and had him fax it again, but at that point, PNC doesn’t even come close to deserving my business. So I stared working with AES Suntrust as a backup plan. Their rates are a little higher, but at this point, that matters little to me.

They’ve been fairly helpful. Their answer period is 2-3 days. So I sent everything in, made sure it was received, had two different employees verify they had everything and then slowly and clearly explain the rest of the process to me. Neat. Two days was Friday, so I called back and it wasn’t ready, but I verified with that woman that my documents were being processed. Yes. So I called back on Tuesday morning (Monday was Memorial Day) and spoke to a woman who said they weren’t finished but to check back on Wednesday and they should be complete. It was 8:30 am so I figured nothing had been done for the day yet, anyways and would check back later. Well, at 3 pm, I spoke to a woman who said “Well, actually, your co-signers income verification has just begun to be processed. It was put in today. It will be 5 days.” So I told her no and I needed to speak to someone else. She was either wrong or five other employees lied to me. So she transfered me to someone else who verified that, in fact, they had just put it in the computer and they export documents to Quality Assurance to
be examined and there is no way to expedite that process.  So I went home to get my info sheet of when and with whom I’d spoken.  I called back and was told that the two women I’d just spoken with were reading the computer wrong and the “received by” date means the date received back from QA.  Is that not something you’d learn the first day of training?  Really?  And to tell me no, transfer me to someone else, and for them to tell me no as well?  That’s pretty strange.

But it turned out okay.  They sent the school verification last night, I guess?  And I’m going to call Financial Aid to make sure they’ve received it.  Then funds should be set up for dispersal, if nothing goes wrong.

In the mean time, I called Financial Aid to make sure my budget was increased to allow for the loan, and it was, to $44,500.  Neat.  Then I talked to Fees and Deposits about having money released early.  He told me that they actually make exceptions for study abroad students and money is released 10-14 days early.  YEAY!  So I emailed Jenny to see if I was on that list.  But I’m not.  Because my classes don’t start until after the summer quarter at OSU starts.  But… I have to pay by June 1.  That doesn’t make much sense but whatever.  Jenny has been extremely short and very, very unprofessional.  From the time I asked her about being confused on why my loan wouldn’t be released immediately, her responses have been unpleasant and snobby.  That’s mature.  So I vote her off, she’s done, I’m going to try not to ask her for anymore help because frankly, she can’t provide it anyways.

I did speak with a lovely woman in Financial Aid named Karen.  She is the first person throughout this process to take responsibility for my call.  She gave me her email and phone number and looked into my file and talked to her boss.  I’m so happy she answered the phone when I called.  As a result, she saw that since I actually have the rank of a junior, I have more federal loan money that I can access (because the scale increases with grade level for maximum amount to be borrowed).  She’s releasing the $1,000-ish dollars to direct deposit in the next few days.  Karen is awesome.  I’ll definitely be able to pay airfare, insurance and deposit by June 1, now, and not have to starve for the following two weeks.

So that’s financial stuff.

I’m also working on my visa stuff. It’s almost all together except what my mom needs to mail me and a background check… and verification of the loan to prove I can support myself while abroad.  I guess it’s taking about 5 days for processing right now, though, so that should be alright.  I want to get it out ASAP though.  It’s a bear of an application process and I’m sending them basically all of the information they could ever desire if they wanted to steal my identity.  It’s kind of scary.

These details may seem mundane, but I would have loved to read a boring, lengthy explanation of the process if I’d had the chance.  That’s the point.  If I can help someone else through this process, I’ll be extremely excited.

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