If you have student loan debt and you’re struggling to pay off your monthly payment, you’re not alone.  Millions of borrowers are struggling to make ends meet.  Lenders and student loan servicers (the company that sends a bill each month) are notoriously bad at helping you when you run into trouble.  In fact, if you’re unable to repay your loans in full, their business model seems built on driving you to default.  We too have experienced the long wait times on the phone, the confusing responses, and the frustratingly limited options.  But if you run into trouble with your student debt, the last thing you should do is run away from the problem.

Luckily, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau – a new federal agency working to help student loan borrowers – produced a sample letter that can help you get a clear answer from these companies without the hassle of waiting on the phone.  You can use their letter to ask your lender or servicer to respond with accurate information about alternative repayment plans and loan modification options – potentially giving you valuable information on how to reduce your monthly payment or to temporarily postpone making payments.

The CFPB has also published a sample financial worksheet for you to assess the amount of money you can put towards your loans. According to the CFPB, some student loan companies request recent pay stubs or a bank statement to verify income and expenses, which you should consider attaching to your e-mail.

To make it even easier, we’ve plugged the language of the CFPB’s letter into an e-mail that you can send directly to your lender or servicer.  Click on the image of your lender or servicer to generate an e-mail.

For borrowers looking to lower their monthly payments, click on your servicer below.

If you don’t see your servicer listed, Click Here for more options.

*If you’re unable to generate an email by clicking on the images above, you can view the sample letter here.

DID YOU TAKE ACTION? – Upload a photo to Twitter or Instagram of you sending the email to your lender – make sure to use the hashtag #HigherEdNotDebt!If you still run out of options and you feel like you’re not being treated fairly, submit a complaint to the CFPB and they will work to get a response from the company on your behalf: www.consumerfinance.gov/complaint

 

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