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.
Table of contents
- Aspire Services for private loans
- Ways to make payment through Aspire
- Aspire Repayment options
- Deferment and Forbearance Option
- Loan Forgiveness
- Military Benefits
- How to refinance Aspire Student Loans?
- Is Aspire Servicing Centre a good option
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Private Loan Repayment Plans
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.
Standard Repayment Plan.
Graduated Repayment Plan
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.
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.
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.
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.