Hello and welcome back to the wonderful financial world of the Dogpound. I recently decided to apply for an equity loan to consolidate my credit card balances. The bank was nice enough to consider my request, and they listed all the items they would need: my last two years of tax forms, my last check stub, my 401K report, and my reward report. “My award report?” I asked. “What is that?” The loan officer told me that this was my annual Social Security report. Really?! When did they start calling it that? This is not some credit card where you earn points when you use it. I put my hard-earned money into that Social Security piggy bank, and it is mine to get back…it is not a reward for good behavior. I found everything but my annual report…I know I got it …but where I put it I have yet to find out. Now, I did find my 2016 report so I put that in with the rest of my stuff and gave it to the bank loan officer. However, just in case, I figured I would go online and get my current report.
As it turned out, that was not a good idea. Now, the Internet is a great tool, but when your password does not work, it can be all downhill from there. After failing several different variations of my password, I decided to just get a new one. Before they would allow me to make this change, they wanted me to prove, that who I said I was…was who I was. Which was fine by me, but they threw a big curve at me. Normally this is pretty straightforward stuff….like…what is your mother’s maiden name, or what is your pet’s name…not this time…oh no! One of the questions listed 5 phone numbers and asked me which ones I never used. Another listed 5 street names and wanted to know which ones I had lived on. Now a little background…I have lived at this one address for almost eleven years..but prior to that I moved 3 times in 5 years [No! I was not dodging bill collectors]. To be honest, I do not remember any of my phone numbers or addresses from that long ago…so I failed, [bummer!] and got locked out for 24 hours. So the search began…going through old paperwork and records trying to track down that essential information. I even dug up my old tax forms…..which did provide my old street addresses but was iffy on the phone numbers. Then it was pointed out to me that if I asked for my annual credit report they included your past phone numbers…well, who knew??? Anyway I was successful in getting my credit report, and I was finally successful in getting my Social Security report, but not before they threw a few more new questions involving things like…what bank held my car loan or what bank handled my mortgage..but I got enough to prove I was the real deal. “I am alive!”
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK
“I am who I am. Your approval is not required.” – Dogpound Wisdom
My neighbor was working in his yard when he was startled by a late model car that came crashing through his hedge and ended up in his front lawn. He rushed to help an elderly lady driver out of the car and sat her down on a lawn chair. He said with excitement, “You appear quite elderly to be driving.” “Well, yes, I am,” she replied proudly. “I’ll be 97 next month and I am now old enough that I don’t even need a driver’s license anymore.” He asked, “How do you know?” She said, “The last time I went to my doctor, he examined me and asked if I had a driver’s license. I told him, yes and handed it to him. He took scissors out of the drawer, cut the license into pieces, and threw them in the waste basket, saying, ‘You won’t need this anymore.’ So I thanked him and left!”
That is all I have today. As always, be good, do good, play safe, and remember, you are who you are, as long as you can prove it. JR