Today were are reviewing three different member files for the Navy Federal Credit Union and they’re all debt consolidation loans. One consolidation for $25000 dollars in Fort Bragg NC, the next for $50000 in Fort Campbell KY, and the big one they wanted to consolidate $100000 in Fort Hood TX – we’ve found here at DebtFiles.com that these are fairly common principal amounts for consolidation products with all financial institutions.
The Navy Federal Credit Union is no different.
And a tip for those who want to be a member of the NFCU but you’re not in the military and your not associated with anyone in the military watch this video which shows how you to join the San Diego chapter of the Navy League for the cost of $25 bucks. Of course if you ARE military personnel Navy Federal is perfect for you.
The reason we publish these detailed reviews is so that we can learn a little about the actual members using these financial instruments. We can see the problem they had and how they solved that problem. We try to publish positive reviews most of the time, but sometimes we have to include the complaint reviews as well.
We won’t go into great history of the NFCU because you can read all about their history on their site. Below is a small image that gives a basic breakdown of their assets (82 million), member savings(60 million), loans outstanding(60 million), reserves(9 million), and members (7 million).
So let’s get on with it shall we. Below are the three files in detail. Some names have been changed to protect the privacy of the debtor(s). Click here to see what the military pay scale are at the time of this posting. We won’t both getting into the watch rank each member is but we will mention the branch of the armed services they belong to.
Ken’s Debt Consolidation for $25000 With The NFCU
Our first file comes from Ken based in Fort Bragg NC and Ken needed to consolidate $25000 dollars in high interest credit card debt due to some over spending they did the last couple of years. Ken and his wife Sandy got some financial help from family for most of their debt but they still this last $25000 to deal with.
Ironically we just posted a three debt consolidation files on a non-military personnel customers who live in North Carolina. Maybe not in the military but their money problems were almost identical – they simply spent more than they earn.
What happened with Ken and Sandy was all about love. She is born and raised in Munich and she was desperate to see her family and bring Ken along. He was stationed in Germany and that’s how they met. But now they live in Fort Bragg in a rental house and she is so far away from her family. So they flew over on their credit cards and while they were there they went on an impulsive tour of Italy – that’s where things went off the rails. This brought their Visa balance almost to the full limit and they didn’t have enough family income to deal with the kind of debt they had.
Next thing that happened was way too common.
They got themselves their first consolidation loan through a less than reputable lender. This didn’t save them any real grief because they didn’t consolidate ALL THEIR DEBT. Some debt consolidation and/or debt settlement companies are crap – they charge up front fees and the deliver a terrible service. A service that often leads the customer to an even more perilous financial situation.
And that’s what happened to Ken. But being that he’s a member of the Airborne Special Forces he’s no stranger to danger.
He made the classic error whereby he consolidated their credit card debt and kept on using the credit card unwisely. Then he had a consolidation loan debt AND credit card debt mounting. Then his credit rating was starting to suffer as well because of some missed payments. Even worse he was delinquent for over three months on his Visa card – a sure fire way to loss your good credit rating.
Naturally he went to the Navy Federal to apply for a second consolidation but that didn’t go over well. He had proved that he didn’t have enough discipline to change his spending habits.
The NFCU turned him down but said he could get approved with a co-signer. He railed against the idea of a co-signer because he has a lot of pride and there was no way he was going to go bended knee and beg someone to co-sign for him.
But in the end his parents broke down and co-signed his consolidation on the firm promise he would start managing his money better.
Shan’s Debt Consolidation for $50000 With The NFCU
Shan is single and she’s and was honourably discharged from the military but still lives very close to her old base in Fort Campbell KY. She was based there for three years before deciding to make a change in her life. She decided she wanted to quit the military and become and entrepreneur and she lusted after the dream of self-employment.
Being that she was honourably discharged means she is now a young veteran who is still able to use the services of Navy Federal (I refer to the NFCU as “Navy Federal”). On their site you can make a few clicks to see if you are eligible to use their credit union and being honourably discharged is accepted.
So Shan’s total credit card debt was in the $30000 dollar range and the last $20000 was on her car loan. The car loan interest rate was 8% and her credit cards on average had 20% rate. She wanted to get a consolidation with an interest rate around 5% and have the single monthly payment. Only problem was that her credit score was low at 660 and any score below 700 makes it pretty hard to get approved with a low rate.
Since Shan was a veteran she obviously tried with Navy Federal to see if she could get a debt consolidation that was from a non-profit credit union first. A good idea but if your credit score is low you’re still going to have to deal with a higher interest rate and possibly no approval at all. I know I’ve already mentioned that but I can’t believe how many people email me assuming a credit union will be easier to get approved with bad credit. I wish it worked that way but it doesn’t.
She went forward and made an appointment with her closest branch as soon as possible. She was very anxious to see what they could do for her and showed up right on time at 1 PM on a Monday. She was greeted by a friendly NFCU representative and told her story disclosing ALL of her personal information. It’s so important to be 100% honest with yourself and the lender. She told them about her $30000 in credit card debt and her existing car loan for $20000 – she told them how her monthly earnings weren’t enough to service her entire debt and also told them how higher her current Interest rates are.
She gave up her whole financial story and provided all the documents required. Luckily she was approved for her $50000 consolidation and at an interest rate of 12.5%. She was also provided with some good literature on how to manage her personal finances better. She took this information to heart and started planning a big lifestyle change.
Dan’s Credit Card Consolidation for $25000 With The NFCU
Dan lives off-base in Fort Hood Texas and he needed a $100000 consolidation with anyone who was willing to take him on. He’s been self-employed with his own property management company which he started after being honorably discharged after the first Gulf war. He was doing really well and making over $15000 a month on average for many years. He was also spending rapidly because money just falls out of Dan’s wallet somehow.
His file is very common in that he ended up in big debt because he never seemed to much respect for the bean counters of the world. His business was doing so well for so long he thought the good times would never end.
Unfortunately he had some bad luck and made mistakes which caused him to lose his most profitable clients. This led to layoffs for his small business and eventually is collapsed. The problem was he had a mitt full of credit cards and they all had high balances on them.
Credit cards were Dan’s downfall too and he spent wildly on various high sticker price items like trucks, trips, and hobbies – his one Achilles heal is ballooning. He loves to ride and work on air balloon so much that it’s been one of his worst debt creators. The cost of all the gear and equipment really adds up fast when you are set on buying the best.
Over $60000 dollars of his debt is because of his obsessiveness and lack of control. If he’s sees any new item for his balloon he’s in line to buy it and ask questions later.
And it wasn’t just the cost of his balloon – it was the cost of travel to different events and festivals. He travels mostly in Canada and the United States, but he has also been to other countries such as Mexico, Thailand, and Japan. The expenses can easily runaway on you if you are so blinded by the adventure that you don’t keep an eye on your credit card balances.
Dan’s Credit Card Balances and Bad Credit Rating
Dan has a total of eight credit cards which is extreme and shows how out of control he got. He started with just one Visa card and then got an American Express card when he needed it for certain stores that don’t take Visa. For instance Costco usually doesn’t take all of the different credit cards – sometimes they accept only American Express, and at the time of this writing they accept Visa. And in Canada Costco only accepts MasterCard. Confusing I know.
Below is a list of Dan’s credit cards and balances totaling $100,000:
- 3 Visa cards (Combined balance rounded up to $40000)
- 2 Mastercards (Combined balance rounded up to $22000)
- 2 American Express Cards (Combined balance rounded up to $25000)
- 1 Discover Card (Combined balance rounded up to $13000)
These card balance were rounded up for ease of presentation but you get the idea. He was out of control.
We’ve talked about the debt problems boy toys can cause before here on Debtfiles.com and I’m sure we’ll see more of this. I suppose in some ways it’s not exactly catastrophic because they ARE living for the moment but the problem with that old “you only live once” theory is that it you will usually regret such flagrant disregard for your financial health.
We may only live once but on average we live for more than eighty years so you don’t want to spend seven years with no credit after a personal bankruptcy. And this is exactly what Dan was afraid of but he one last ace up his sleeve.
Dan’s Approval With NFCU
Dan’s credit card sound scary to the average middle class person, but Dan’s income wasn’t normal and he somehow managed to always pay his minimum amount on his cards each month.
He told us he thinks OCD-like behaviour account for this and now that he’s finally consolidating all his credit card balances. A good thing he was diligent in making his monthly minimum payments or he would have been denied his consolidation and/or ended up stuck with a huge interest rate.
If you averaged out the APR on all of his credit cards it came to 17% percent and when he finished his consolidation with the NFCU personal loan rate was 9.5%. He was hoping more for a rate in 4-5% range but his credit rating wasn’t that strong since his business has been in a bad slump the last three years.
Conclusion of The NFCU Debt Consolidations
As you’ve learned by reading this it’s great that military personnel has a specialized financial institution but this will never make servicemen and women infallible – if they keep spending without earning more every year you are destined to continue your struggle to make ends meet.
I recommend reading my Debt Reversal Plan to learn more about getting rid of all your debt and then becoming independently wealthy. It CAN be done, but you WILL have to completely change your lifestyle and there are a lot of Americans who refuse to do so.