Your guide to Aspire Student Loan Servicer

Get all the info about Aspire Servicing Center, the various repayment options it offers and know if it is the right fit for you? Also discover the services it offers and the repayment methods for loans.

Updated by Heibha Passah on 11th June 2019

Aspire Servicing Centre is a customer service provided to the borrowers of Private and Federal loans under Aspire Resources Inc.

Aspire Resources Inc is a wholly owned for-profit subsidiary of Iowa Student Loan company.

Iowa Student Loan is a not-for-profit organization that was started around 1979.

Customer services are also provided by Aspire on behalf of its external business partners, payout private student loans on behalf of its partner lenders and transfer the data of the student loan to postsecondary institutions and lenders.

It came into a contract with the federal government to provide loan services through the Direct Loan Program.

Aspire Student Loan Servicer

source - aspireservicingcenter.com


Table of Contents


Aspire Services for Private Loans

Private loans are provided to meet the education fund needs of the students. These loans require credit score approval and a co-signer (if necessary).

Aspire provides services to various clients/lenders of private loans. The following are some of the loans provided by these partner lenders.

Iowa Student Loan Programs - Students, parents or any family member can acquire these loans - 

  • Partnership Advance Education Loan

  • College Family Loan.

Credit Union Programs- The eligibility criteria for this loan is that the borrower must be a member or become a member of the credit union and both of the loans have different criteria for becoming a member.

  • Alliant Credit Union Private Student Loan

  • Ascentra Credit Union Private Student Loan Program

Bank Programs- The eligibility criteria is to become a current bank customer along with other criteria that will be provided by the bank.

  • American State Bank Private Student Loan Program

Ways to make payment through Aspire

Aspire Servicing Centre provides various ways for you to pay off your student loan.

Online Payment - By creating an account with Aspire, you’ll be able to make payments online by providing your loan account number or Social Security Number and your date of birth.

Auto-Debit - Here, you have to sign up for an auto-debit program where the amount will be deducted from your savings account every month.

Some important information to know before signing up for this program is given below.

  • Check on a letter regarding a confirmation that your auto debit has been set up

  • In case the due date for payment is on a holiday or a weekend, the amount will be deducted from your account the next business day

  • Deactivation of auto-debit might occur if three payments are sent back because of a lack of funds within a 24-month period

  • Notify Aspire Servicing Centre if you want to deactivate auto-debit payment system at least 5 business days before the next payment due date

Make monthly payments by mail - Your payments and payment stub can be mailed to the following address. 

Aspire Servicing Centre

P.O Box 659701

West Des Moines, IA 50265-0970

Make sure to write your account number on your money order or check.

Pay by Phone - Aspire offers an automated payment service which is free for making payments at any time, without speaking to a loan counselor.

You can use the following number to make payment by phone - 

Aspire Customer Service Phone Number - (800) 243-7552 (toll-free)

Or: (515) 243-5626 from the Des Moines area

You can pay by using your checking or savings account or ATM card.

You can pay in advance the whole or part of your loan at any time. The amount paid in advance will differ from the principal outstanding balance because of the interest accrual that happens daily.


Aspire Repayment options

Aspire provides different options, as per your need to repay back your loan.

While some plans allow you to make payments as soon as possible, other plans also allow you to make monthly payments at a lower rate and also extend your loan repayment term.

It provides different plans for different types of loan.

Federal Loan Repayment Plans

  1. Standard Repayment Plan - This plan allows you to pay off your loans at a fixed amount on a monthly basis, in a short period of time, with the least amount of interest. The repayment term of the loan is 10 years except for consolidated loans. This plan is recommended to you if you are able to afford it, as it will help you make payments at the shortest time with the least amount of interest.

  2. Graduated Repayment Plan - It will allow you to make small amounts of payment initially which will increase after every two years. You have to pay more interest because of the lower payments in the beginning. The repayment term of the loan is 10 years, except for consolidated loans.

  3. Extended Repayment Plans - This plan allows you to extend your repayment term up to 25 years. You have to pay more interest as the principal amount will reduce at a slower rate and you can choose between standard or graduated repayment method.

  4. Income-based Repayment Plan - IBR is applicable if your debt is more than your income, so you can pay your monthly debts as per the income you earn. Your monthly payments will be 15% of your discretionary income but not exceeding your payment under the Standard Repayment Plan. Your payment can be as low as $0 and any loan balance that you have after 25 years will be discharged.

  5. Income-Sensitive Repayment Plan - The monthly payments that you make under this plan will be based on the percentage of your annual income and it ranges between 4% and 25% of your verified gross income. The amount of interest that accrues in between the payments will be more than the payments and you have to pay more interest as the principal amount reduces slowly.


[Learn more on the Advantages of Income-Driven Repayment Plans]


Private Loan Repayment Plans

  1. Reducing the accrued interest - The period in which you are not making repayments, the interest usually accrues. You can make interest payments that accrue during this period in order to reduce the amount you have to repay on a later date.

  2. Standard Repayment Plan.

  3. Graduated Repayment Plan

  4. Select 2 Repayment Plan - This plan allows you to make only interest payments in the first two years but it’ll lead to an increase in the amount of interest to be paid in the long run. 


Deferment and Forbearance option

You can also delay your payments in case of shortage of funds by using the Deferment and Forbearance option.

In deferment, the government will be paying the interest amount on your subsidized student loans during the deferment period.


Loan Forgiveness

The following are some cases in which the loan/debt of the borrower can be forgiven-

  • Workers in the public services department, nurses and doctors.

  • In case the borrower, student or co-signer died or suffered from permanent disability.

  • If the borrower uses an Income-based Repayment Plan, then the loan balance remaining after 25 years will be forgiven.

  • Rare incidences like the closure of the school or it falsely certified your eligibility before completion of the program or someone stole your identity to take a loan in your name or the school didn’t provide a refund when you withdrew from it.

  • In case of bankruptcy.


Military Benefits

Aspire provides two programs to help out students who are going for military services.

  • SCRA Interest Rate Limitation - Under this, the students who qualify will be charged an interest rate of a maximum of 6% on their student loans.

  • Armed Forces Interest Reduction Program - The students who are on active military duty will be getting their interest deducted to 0% for up to 24 months. They should not have defaulted on their private loan and are deployed between September 11, 2001, and June 30, 2019.


How to refinance Aspire student loans?

Aspire Student Loans can be refinanced by acquiring another private loan with a lower interest rate. If you have a good credit score, low debt ratio and meet the underwriting criteria, then you can explore the market and get a loan with better rates and terms. This will give you the option of changing your servicer if you’re not comfortable with your present servicer.

 

[Also Read: Student loan services - Find best loan servicers ]

 

Federal loans have various benefits like loan forgiveness, income-based repayment plans, which people have to give up on if they choose to refinance their loans. Those who do not want to give up on such benefits can have their loans consolidated instead. This will make sure that the loans stay as they are (federal) even if the servicer is changed.


Is Aspire Servicing Centre a good option?

Aspire have had a lot of good customer ratings from the Department of Education. Despite this, they are also swarmed with various complaints filed against them and posted on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Better Business Bureau website.

The complaints were regarding Aspire not being active on their website and also about sending excess of emails and phone calls from their side. Some say that they were not providing good customer support and service.

Some complaints were also about them not handling their payments well and the payments not getting processed.

These complaints against Aspire have really put their reputation down, but considering that some customers are satisfied with their services, it is better to consult with a professional and see what they have to say about this. Do some research and compare them with other servicing agencies and choose the best option.


FAQ's

  Is Iowa Student Loan a Federal Loan?


No, Iowa Student Loan is a Private loan.

  How do I find out who my loan servicer is?


The process for finding out your loan servicer differs for Federal and Private loans.

In the case of Federal loans, follow the below process -

  • Go to the National Student Loan Data System.

  • Click on Financial Aid Review and accept the terms and conditions.

  • Use your FSA ID to log in. You can easily create one if you don’t have it.

  • You’ll see a list of the information regarding your loan like the loan types that you have, the amounts as well as the principal amount and interest that is outstanding.

  • The numbers related to each loan information is displayed where you have to click to expand it. There you’ll find the lender’s contact information.

In the case of private loans, you need more effort to find out your loan servicer. You can first check your credit reports or your recent loan statements. This will help you find out who your student loan servicer is.

  What is interest capitalization?


It is a process where the interest which is yet to be paid is added to the principal amount. It will increase your loan amount making it more than what you borrowed.

  How can I reduce interest capitalization?


In periods where you don’t need to make repayments, i.e deferment or forbearance or during a grace period, Aspire will send you the monthly statements regarding the interest that accrues and you can make the interest payments at that time to prevent it from capitalizing.

  Why did the loan amount increase from what was originally borrowed?


It is because of the capitalization of interest. During the period where no repayment is made, interest accrues and it is added with the remaining principal amount, hence increasing it further.

  Can payments be postponed?


Yes, payments can be postponed by applying for Deferment or Forbearance on federal loans. For Private loans, contact Aspire as the option for postponing payments is limited.

  How do I pay off my loans?


You can easily pay off your loan amounts in full at any time by calling on (800) 243-7552 or logging in to your account online to know about the actual amount to be paid off.

  How is each payment applied to multiple loans in my account?


When making payments, if you provide a bill stub then the payments will be applied as listed on that bill. If the bill is not provided then the payments are applied proportionately.

  When are payments credited to my account?


  • If the payment is done through mail, the payment is credited when it reaches the office.

  • If the payment is done by Bill Pay Service then it’ll be credited on the day it is received in the office.

  • Online payment made through your account will be credited on the day you choose to schedule your payment

  • Payment made through the phone will be credited on the day you make the call or some other day that you choose to schedule it on.

  • Auto-debit payments will be credited on the due date.

  Can I make extra payments?


Yes, you can pay more than the amount required on a monthly basis. It will reduce the amount that you have to pay on a later date.