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  • Zaphod
    replied







    Ive refinanced with Sofi, Earnest, and now back with Sofi. All have been very easy and straightforward, and given me 300$ each time. Earnest was awesome and a couple of the features like paying every 2 weeks was great…but there was a lot of things I didnt like that they might have fixed by now. There was a paucity of any kind of info about the loan, current status, payoff, rates, etc….They had to hand write me a statement and payoff. When the variable rate changed it was hard to tell if my payment should have changed and didnt, or it was ok since I paid a small amount extra already, etc…Just wasnt excited about opacity for something so important.

    Maybe if rates drop again sometime soon and they have a great deal, I’ll switch back but record keeping is far too important to be lax with.
    Click to expand…


    Zaphod,

    “Ive refinanced with Sofi, Earnest, and now back with Sofi.”

    Do you keep a passive eye on interest rates? I’m impressed by the constant refinancing if it’s due to repeated decreases in interest rates.

    “Earnest was awesome and a couple of the features like paying every 2 weeks was great…but there was a lot of things I didnt like that they might have fixed by now. There was a paucity of any kind of info about the loan, current status, payoff, rates, etc….They had to hand write me a statement and payoff.”

    From what I’ve experienced with their fixed rate student loan refinancing, this has all been addressed. They provide an abundance of loan details on the home/”loan overview” screen. I’m guessing feedback from folks like you was the cause so “Thanks.”

    “When the variable rate changed it was hard to tell if my payment should have changed and didnt, or it was ok since I paid a small amount extra already, etc…Just wasnt excited about opacity for something so important.”

    I’d be annoyed by this, too. I hope they’ve fixed this problem by now. Maybe you’ll find out if/when you switch back to Earnest?
    Click to expand...


    Yes, I just kept switching into better rates, and taking the 300 each time. Ive never had anything other than a very simple breezy experience so I didnt care.

    Leave a comment:


  • MochaDoc
    replied




    Ive refinanced with Sofi, Earnest, and now back with Sofi. All have been very easy and straightforward, and given me 300$ each time. Earnest was awesome and a couple of the features like paying every 2 weeks was great…but there was a lot of things I didnt like that they might have fixed by now. There was a paucity of any kind of info about the loan, current status, payoff, rates, etc….They had to hand write me a statement and payoff. When the variable rate changed it was hard to tell if my payment should have changed and didnt, or it was ok since I paid a small amount extra already, etc…Just wasnt excited about opacity for something so important.

    Maybe if rates drop again sometime soon and they have a great deal, I’ll switch back but record keeping is far too important to be lax with.
    Click to expand...


    Zaphod,

    "Ive refinanced with Sofi, Earnest, and now back with Sofi."

    Do you keep a passive eye on interest rates? I'm impressed by the constant refinancing if it's due to repeated decreases in interest rates.

    "Earnest was awesome and a couple of the features like paying every 2 weeks was great…but there was a lot of things I didnt like that they might have fixed by now. There was a paucity of any kind of info about the loan, current status, payoff, rates, etc….They had to hand write me a statement and payoff."

    From what I've experienced with their fixed rate student loan refinancing, this has all been addressed. They provide an abundance of loan details on the home/"loan overview" screen. I'm guessing feedback from folks like you was the cause so "Thanks."

    "When the variable rate changed it was hard to tell if my payment should have changed and didnt, or it was ok since I paid a small amount extra already, etc…Just wasnt excited about opacity for something so important."

    I'd be annoyed by this, too. I hope they've fixed this problem by now. Maybe you'll find out if/when you switch back to Earnest?

    Leave a comment:


  • Zaphod
    replied
    Ive refinanced with Sofi, Earnest, and now back with Sofi. All have been very easy and straightforward, and given me 300$ each time. Earnest was awesome and a couple of the features like paying every 2 weeks was great...but there was a lot of things I didnt like that they might have fixed by now. There was a paucity of any kind of info about the loan, current status, payoff, rates, etc....They had to hand write me a statement and payoff. When the variable rate changed it was hard to tell if my payment should have changed and didnt, or it was ok since I paid a small amount extra already, etc...Just wasnt excited about opacity for something so important.

    Maybe if rates drop again sometime soon and they have a great deal, I'll switch back but record keeping is far too important to be lax with.

    Leave a comment:


  • MochaDoc
    replied
    Soundbyte,

    Is that range for variable rates only? If it is, it's broad because it's based on what you choose. For example, the 2.2% IR will result in a higher monthly payment and the 5.8% rate will result in a lower monthly payment. Ultimately, you will choose the IR/monthly payment mix that works best for you.

    Check out this link (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/loan-startup-earnest-says-it-has-killer-feature-to-beat-big-lenders-sallie-mae-200238883.html). The monthly payment/interest rate slider is featured at about the 1:30 mark in the video.

    Re Credible, I looked back at the quotes provided there and they were the worst for me as well.

    Leave a comment:


  • soundbyte
    replied
    MochaDoc,

    Glad to hear your rave reviews of Earnest. I got the free 2 minute quote already, but wanted more information as the range they give you is quite large (e.g "2.22 - 5.8%"). I'm currently shopping around, and so far SoFi has the best rate (Earnest is still pending) with the least amount of hassle. I also went through Credible, which gave me terrible rates through Citizen's Bank, and they insist on calling incessantly, which I found to be a nuisance. But I can understand why they do it.

    Leave a comment:


  • Matt
    replied
    I closed today with Citizens bank on a 10yr variable at 2.75% (with autopay discount), 130K.  This was after I had refi'd with DRB two years ago, previous rate was ~3.8%.  I asked DRB if they would match the rate after I had gotten approval from Citizens, they said I would have to apply for a full refi through them to find out.  So now Citizen's gets my money.

    Leave a comment:


  • MochaDoc
    replied







    Just to be clear, the 2-minute quote from Earnest does not require passwords and usernames for various financial accounts. They only ask for that information if you decide to submit a complete application.
    Click to expand…


    I dont understand why they require such “linking”. It’s a huge security risk. I understand there are banking APIs and sites like Mint.com and others use similar tactics, but I personally don’t feel comfortable linking all relevant financial accounts just to get a quote. Seems very excessive. I’m more than happy to send over account statements, but “linking” seems too invasive for my tastes.

    I just emailed them to ask if I could apply without linking the accounts…waiting to hear what they have to say.
    Click to expand...


    "I personally don’t feel comfortable linking all relevant financial accounts just to get a quote."  Linking financial accounts is not required for the 2-minute quote; only for the full application.

    That small clarification aside, I understand your concerns. I'd recommend changing your passwords to a generic, memorable, secure password for your Earnest application and then changing them back once you receive Earnest's decision.

    I don't think Earnest's encryption methods, etc. are unsafe but the security risk is not zero. I immediately changed all but two of my account passwords after receiving my decision; two of my credit cards are still linked and I've noticed no suspicious activity.

    I wasn't able to link my highest balance bank or my retirement/brokerage accounts and they did ask me to upload PDF copies of the latest statements prior to completing my application review so your request will likely be honored.

    Knowing what I know, now that I'm on the other side of the application process, the risks are worth the rewards that come with getting Earnest refinancing approval. I'm a bit of an Earnest fan(atic) so I am biased but my financial life is much improved with Earnest as my new loan servicer: interest savings (~20k) due to interest rate reduction (3.75% fixed, 5-year v. 6.8% fixed, 73 mos. remaining), further IR reduction due to autopay (down to 3.5% v. 6.08%) and biweekly scheduled payments (5-year reduced to 4.5 year repayment schedule). Choosing your rate type, payment amount and corresponding interest rate instead of being told what and how much with the ability to change the payment amount (with corresponding rate change) initially and throughout the life of your loan. You're encouraged to refinance with them again after six months of timely payments if your rate is higher than the lowest ones currently available/advertised. Making extra payments is super easy and you don't have to jump through hoops to get them and your regularly scheduled payment applied in the same payment cycle. Loans are forgiven at death. The ability to switch between fixed and variable rates (haven't tried this, yet). I could go on and on but I won't bore you.

    Best of luck with your request and your application, soundbyte.

    Leave a comment:


  • soundbyte
    replied




    Just to be clear, the 2-minute quote from Earnest does not require passwords and usernames for various financial accounts. They only ask for that information if you decide to submit a complete application.
    Click to expand...


    I dont understand why they require such "linking". It's a huge security risk. I understand there are banking APIs and sites like Mint.com and others use similar tactics, but I personally don't feel comfortable linking all relevant financial accounts just to get a quote. Seems very excessive. I'm more than happy to send over account statements, but "linking" seems too invasive for my tastes.

    I just emailed them to ask if I could apply without linking the accounts...waiting to hear what they have to say.

    Leave a comment:


  • The White Coat Investor
    replied
    Lots of my readers are refinancing with SoFi and Earnest every month. There is often a bit of hassle getting all the paperwork in and right, but it seems to get better as time goes on. The shorter the term, the better your debt to income ratio, the better your credit and variable < fixed seem to give you the best rates. Some people do get the lowest possible rates, but most do not. As long as you're not going for forgiveness, even a small decrease in rate is worth it.  Just remember that you get rid of loans by throwing money at them, not by refinancing them! Refinancing helps save a little interest, but living like a resident/fellow is what makes them go goodbye.

    Leave a comment:


  • MochaDoc
    replied
    Just to be clear, the 2-minute quote from Earnest does not require passwords and usernames for various financial accounts. They only ask for that information if you decide to submit a complete application.

    Leave a comment:


  • MochaDoc
    replied




    Thanks everyone for the info, we will look into a few more places before signing with Sofi, just to see if anything better is out there.

    Sofi did give us a slightly better rate for a 5-year variable, but my husband would rather go with a variable 10-year for the payment flexibility (not such a high monthly commitment).  We still plan to make large lump-sum extra payments every few months toward the principle, hopefully getting rid of the loan within 2-3 years if all goes according to plan.
    Click to expand...


    I'd mosey on over to the following link (https://www.whitecoatinvestor.com/new-players-in-student-loan-refinancing/), armed with an empty excel spreadsheet (helps you keep track of the estimated interest rates, estimated monthly payments, duration, type of loan and whatever else you feel is important) and request quotes from all eligible companies. Go with the one that best suits your needs.

    I recently did this and ended up refinancing with Earnest. A bit invasive, they ask for passwords and usernames for your financial accounts, but well worth it in my opinion. I'm super happy with my decision.

    Best of luck.

    Leave a comment:


  • Zaphod
    replied




    Thanks everyone for the info, we will look into a few more places before signing with Sofi, just to see if anything better is out there.

    Sofi did give us a slightly better rate for a 5-year variable, but my husband would rather go with a variable 10-year for the payment flexibility (not such a high monthly commitment).  We still plan to make large lump-sum extra payments every few months toward the principle, hopefully getting rid of the loan within 2-3 years if all goes according to plan.
    Click to expand...


    If you make larger extra payments you are effectively reducing the interest rate anyway. Why not pick a term/mo amount that you feel safe with and contribute extra to reduce the effective rate.

    Leave a comment:


  • GoodLife
    replied
    Thanks everyone for the info, we will look into a few more places before signing with Sofi, just to see if anything better is out there.

    Sofi did give us a slightly better rate for a 5-year variable, but my husband would rather go with a variable 10-year for the payment flexibility (not such a high monthly commitment).  We still plan to make large lump-sum extra payments every few months toward the principle, hopefully getting rid of the loan within 2-3 years if all goes according to plan.

    Leave a comment:


  • nolamd84
    replied
    Just refinanced principle of 190k with credible.com and eventually CitizensBank. Got 2.45% variable 5-year. Was happy with that. Was way lower than what I got from SoFi.

    Leave a comment:


  • abrownpeds
    replied
    I was really surprised at the rate... I just refinanced through SoFi for a similar amount after graduation. My rate was also in the low 3's, but I went with a 7 yr variable.

    For anyone else with issues with Sofi - their phone customer service is fantastic and very efficient.  I had some similar issues with things feeling slow with the processing, but all it took was a quick call and everything fell into place quickly after that.

    Leave a comment:

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