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Negative experience refinancing with SoFi

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  • Negative experience refinancing with SoFi

    Hey all,

    I know they are a WCI sponsor, but I think this is important for people to know.

    I refinanced with SoFi in mid October with a decent fixed rate (2.49%) as a resident with a $600 refi incentive and $100 "signing bonus". I spoke with their customer team multiple times to verify that I was meeting all T&C of the deal, and they walked me through signing their W9 and setting up ACH. I looked carefully and finally disclosure, everything looked good.

    They told me to be patient with the bonus so I give them time, money never shows up. I reach out in early December asking about it. They tell me they'll submit a "request" for it to be paid but it won't be a problem. Cool.

    Now December 27th, still no money so I call. They tell me the "request" was denied because I didn't sign up for their SoFi "money" account, a term which was never in my final disclosure OR verbally communicated by their employees. When the request was rejected they "regret that they didn't call" and now the offer is expired. Nothing they can do and they are very "sorry and we understand how you feel".

    Fair warning to all - these signing bonuses are not all they are cracked up to be, at least with SoFi and I would strongly consider taking my business elsewhere based on my experience.

    TLDR; SoFi promised me $700 for sign on bonus, made me work for it, never paid, and told me it was my fault based on a hidden Term and Condition.

  • #2
    We’ve never used SOFI because they’ve never been as competitive as others on rate. Your experience is also another strike against them in my book.

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    • #3
      Sorry to hear about your experience with them. I had the opposite. They were excellent to work with and had the best rate. Albeit, this was 3 or so years ago now so things can change.

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      • #4
        So unfortunate. Did you just go to their site directly or did you use WCIs link?
        Helping student loan borrowers manage their student loans. StudentLoanAdvice.com. [email protected]

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Andrew StudentLoanAdvice View Post
          So unfortunate. Did you just go to their site directly or did you use WCIs link?
          Not a response for OP, but this experience is identical to what happened with my daughter's refi with SoFi several years ago. It was actually several years ago.
          The difference was that I hounded them more and was able to sort through it. I did post a complaint and WCI responded.
          • Regarding the "bonuses", both the total bonus and the cash bonuses are designed to be "difficult". From a vendor's perspective and WCI's perspective(for the course), the maximum "value" is headlined. However, nothing is automatic. The intent seems to be maximize those that do not properly claim the "rebate". These are not "discounts" or "bonuses", these are rebates.
          • How difficult? Think of clipping coupons or the barcode and submitting it via mail to eventually get $500 off on a computer or car purchase. WCI has a 90 day limit that the borrower had to apply for, Same with the lenders. This is intentional to minimize the usage, thus costs to WCI and to the lender.
          • However, both the lenders and WCI have controls to make sure they get paid, use the link. The application and refi application is in the process and database. They monetize but the "details" for the customer are buried and hard to find. Refi done! Great, now two more applications to get your "rebates". Perfectly legal, however it is not a "fiduciary" process by any means. It is not deceptive, but it is designed not in the best interest of the customer. Not what I consider a "fair shake". The devil is in the details, they are not automatic by intent.
          • https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1F...XVMbA/viewform
          Improvements have been made, so don't take this as a complete negative. Marketing surveys have value on the internet. Exchange info for something "free".
          Monetizing on the internet, customer acquisition costs and effectiveness has value. The world is what it is. The point is, nothing is "free". You will work for it.

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          • #6
            Guess I better respond to this.

            #1 If you are having a hard time with a student loan refinancing company AND you have gone through the WCI links, we can almost surely fix it. Please, please, please get us in the loop ASAP. We have fixed issues for DOZENS of white coat investors in the past with every single company. Because we send them so much business, they listen to us and we have personal relationships at every company.

            # 2 As far as the deal to get Fire Your Financial Advisor free if you refinance through our links this last year (currently extended through April 30th), we are certainly NOT trying to make it hard to claim this. If you can think of an easier process, we'd love to hear it. But this is as easy as we've been able to figure out how to make it. Basically, all you have to do is ask for it and we have to make sure you actually refinanced through our links and then we give it to you.

            Here's what the fine print says below the chart every time that chart shows up on the website:

            Borrowers who refinance more than $60,000 in student loans using the WCI links will be enrolled in The White Coat Investor’s flagship course, Fire Your Financial Advisor for free ($799 value). Borrowers will still receive the amazing cash rebates that WCI has negotiated with each lender. Offer valid for loan applications submitted from May 1, 2021 through May 31, 2022. Free course must be claimed within 90 days of loan disbursement. To claim free course enrollment, visit https://www.whitecoatinvestor.com/refibonus.

            When you go to that link, you have to answer 8 questions (you know, things like your name, email address, which lender you refinanced with, and how much you refinanced). I don't think that's too much to ask. For your privacy, the lenders do not give us your personal information. They will give us a list of amounts refinanced so that's how we tell that you actually refinanced through our links. We can't make the process any simpler because we don't have any contact information for you due to privacy laws/policies. I'm not sure how we can make it better. Do you think we should give you 180 days? I can tell you almost everyone who wants it claims it in less than 30.

            # 3 Occasionally someone gets confused and thinks they qualify for multiple cash bonuses from a lender. That is almost never the case. It's almost always either/or. However, the lenders generally give you the better one automatically. Or someone goes through another affiliate link and then comes through ours but still has the cookie from the other link in their browser. When we don't get credit for the sale, you don't get the bonuses only available through our links. So clear your cookies if you've been shopping around. (We put a note about that on our main page too.) Sometimes someone is already a customer with that company and then tries to refinance with them again through our links to get more cash. They don't pay us for those and they don't give you the cash either. You have to go to a new company to get paid again. (You might be able to go back later and get paid again, but that is company dependent.)

            # 4 While we like you and want you to be successful and try to be 100% truthful and as transparent as possible, WCI is not a fiduciary, never has been, and has no fiduciary obligation to you. We are not a financial advisor, accountant, or attorney. We're a blog and a podcast etc. We have paid advertisers, affiliate partners (where we sell other people's products like student loan refinancing), and our own products to sell.
            Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

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