Student Loan Concepts Explained: Loan Servicer

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Your loan servicer is basically the manager of your student loan—the company that is responsible for your loan from the moment money is disbursed. Your loan servicer processes your loan payments and can be a great resource when you have questions, e.g., when you're preparing for your grace period to end and want to know your repayment process.

What's the difference between my lender and my loan servicer? 

Your lender is the institution through which you initially apply for your student loan; examples of lenders include the federal government, Sallie Mae, and (in the case of CommonBond) Bank of Lake Mills. Lenders may in turn employ other companies, called loan servicers, to manage the day-to-day billing and communications associated with your student loans; examples of loan servicers include NelNet and Education Credit Management Corp (ECMC). 

Unlike with your lender, you typically do not choose your loan servicer—the loan servicer is simply whatever company your lender trusts to manage your loan payments.

Your servicer is a great point of contact when you have questions about your student loan payments or borrower protections—for example, if you ever think about forbearance, then you should contact your servicer. At CommonBond, we work with our borrowers from the moment they apply all the way through repayment.

How do I contact my loan servicer? 

If you're already making payments on your loans, you should use the contact information from your online portal or from any mail you've received.

If you're not sure who your loan servicer is and you have a federal loan, you can find information on your current loan servicer and how to reach that company here.

If you're not sure who your loan servicer is and you have a private loan, a good place to start is your financial aid office or, if you're more than a year or two out from school, your lender. If you have a CommonBond loan, you can contact us directly at

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