I Called 4 Companies for Advice on My Student Debt. This Is What I Learned.

September 17, 2014

Companies that peddle student-loan debt-relief services insist that they are rescuing borrowers from red ink and red tape. But what’s their pitch to prospective customers? I called four of the companies to find out. I didn’t mention The Chronicle, but I told them, accurately, that I am a recent college graduate and an intern in the private sector, and that I owe $27,000 in federal student loans.

What I heard was a common script performed again and again by the “student loan specialists.” It was a script that contained some holes. Within the first five minutes of each call, the customer-service representative described his or her employer’s tight relationship with the federal government. “Mary,” at Broadsword Student Advantage, told me that her company was “tied to the Department of Education.” And “Angelee,” from Student Loan Relief Inc., said her company worked closely with both the government and loan servicers to ensure that the loan consolidation was a smooth one. Continue reading on The Chronicle. Photo by marsmet471

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