Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Panic!!! Oh, wait…

So our HELOC (home equity line of credit) was recently purchased by another party. No big. Happens all the time.

And then, last night, I got my first statement from the new outfit. The HELOC is, according to my records, in the repayment phase on a ten year amortization schedule. In English, my payment should be $730.

So you can imagine my…dismay…when the minimum payment due, the payment they cheerfully told me was to be withdrawn automatically from my checking account in four (4) business days (or 32 business hours), was…

Three Thousand Four Hundred Forty-Six Dollars and 75/100’s ($3,446.75).

If you notice a brownish haze hanging over San Joaquin Country this morning, it is not from the local wildfires.

It is the scum left by the language I uttered.

They were closed by the time I got my statement (dang, now I’m down to THREE business days!!). I ran through scenarios in my head. Best case, they already knew it was a mistake and had already corrected it. It was, after all, over a week since the statement had been generated. No harm done.

Worst case, they not only didn’t know, they thought they were correct. I’d have to wrangle with them, and it would take more time than I had, and when that payment hit my checking account havoc would be wreaked.

And then all the in-between scenarios and theories of error origin, which I won’t bore you with because they are definitely the kinds of scenarios a database geek with heavy financial institution background get into. (Flat file…SAP to DB2 format…truncations…hmmm…)

With great irritation, I logged into my emergency fund account and transferred enough to cover the horrific minimum due per the statement into my checking account. If the problem is fixed in a timely fashion, no big. I can put it back. If, however, it is not fixed…

Well.

Instead of having to go through all the irritation and headaches involved in getting letters of apology and refund of overdraft and wrangling with credit cards about how it wasn’t my fault that their payments were returned and that they “ought” to reinstate my formerly awesome interest rate, and trying to get the all the late penalties covered by the lender, all I need to do is deal with the one issue: that they appear to have moved me from a ten year to a two year amortization schedule.

These are the kinds of things that make an emergency fund worth what you go through to get it.

**UPDATE**

I talked to the new lender. They had indeed already caught the error and fixed it, so according to theory they’re only taking the $730 in three days.

I’m…just gonna leave the extra cash there until after the dust settles. It isn’t that I don’t trust them…it’s just that I don’t trust them.

3 comments:

Very Herodotus said...

"One point twenty one gigawatts!! One point twenty one gigawatts!!"

Sorry. Your post reminded me of Back To The Future. Zowie!

Judy said...

Dismay. Yeah.

I hope they have it fixed now, anyway!

John said...

Perhaps the new lender was sucking on their own bong...