Better late than never

I'm more than a month overdue for an update on my student loans.  Not a truly exciting update as I haven't been throwing any extra money on them.  Alas.  But I'm formulating plans. I'll be getting a chunk of cash,  aka a bonus, and shortly after that a small raise (not due to new position...one I earned before that).  I need to figure out where I'm going to throw it. I have many options.  I just need to think about what *feels* right to me.  Ok, the raise is easy. I already know what I'm doing with that.  As soon as I get the first pay that has the raise on it I'll set up the excess to go into my savings account automatically until I get to an amount I consider to be a good safety net.  Cause I actually have one of those now. It's been growing since June or July. *grin*  Actually I've started stowing money away for BlogHer 2007 in another account as well.  And part of my bonus will be used to buy a new paid of glasses. I've had the ones I wear now (and that you'll never see pictures of cause I hate glasses) for at least 4 years. Possibly longer.  The lenses are cracked and really do need to be replaced.

Right, so student loans.  Pain in the butt that they are but I love them nonetheless because they paid for my education.  Amount in brackets is what it was January 2006.

RBC student loan $15,774.13 (17,090.26)
NSLC student loan $10,671.07 (11,473.69)
CIBC student loan $9, 925.26 (10,659.32)

Total: $36,370.46 (39,223.47)

Total difference of $2853.01

Looks like I'm barely making a dent in it doesn't it? That's because interest sucks.  On the RBC loan alone I've made $2484 in payments alone.  But it's only showing a decrease of $1316.13.

Oh what I'd do to get the same interest in a savings account as I do on my loans...

What else have I done since that original post?  I've got an online savings account. Money goes in every pay period and I don't touch it. I never take it out.  I came close to taking money out once but found a way to do what I needed to do with cash.  I also have a "short term" savings account that I can access easily.  It's good to see cash sitting there.

I also have an additional safety cushion. Near the end of the summer I found out that I was pre-approved for a line of credit.   While I wasn't crazy about the idea of having even more potential debt (because that's how I look at it) on my record I also knew I was coming near the end of my contract at work and well...I wanted the safety net.  My contract was renewed and my line of credit is still sitting there pristine as ever (admit it, you're impressed with that).

I also called my two credit card holders and got the interest rates on my credit cards decreased significantly.  I figured if my bank was pre-approving me for a line of credit my credit rating must have improved. I was right. And I found out that one of my card holders had seriously *OLD* employment info.  So it was good that I called. Have I paid them off yet? No. But I'm still plugging away at them and there's now the interest rate between them and my student loans is quite small.

This all sounds better than it really is in some ways. While I have way more debt that I'd like, I don't feel like I'm drowning in it.  And I've increased my income.  While on paper the negatives still out balance the positives, the feeling is the opposite.