Whether you’ve borrowed federal student loans, private student loans, or institutional loans directly from your college or university, you may encounter ECSI. That’s because ECSI is a student loan servicer who services a range of student loans.
Below, we take a closer look at who ECSI is, what they do, and their role as a student loan servicer so that you will be able to make an informed decision about how you repay your student loans.
Who is ECSI?
Heartland ECSI (also known simply as ECSI) is one of the 11 student loan servicers currently working with the U.S. Department of Education to manage federal student loans. The company specializes in servicing Perkins Loans, institutional loans, and private student loans.
In business since 1972, ECSI services institutional loans for more than 2,200 colleges and universities, making it one of the largest servicers in the entire servicing industry.
ECSI is headquartered in Warrendale, Pennsylvania, but services student loans for borrowers around the country.
What does ECSI do?
In its role as a federal student loan servicer, ECSI is responsible for performing a broad list of duties required by them of the U.S. Department of Education. This includes:
- Managing your student loans, in a broad sense
- Receiving month payments and allocating those payments appropriately across your account
- Processing student loan paperwork and forms
- Maintaining your student loan due dates, status, and other logistics
- Helping you apply for deferment or forbearance, forgiveness, discharge, etc.
- Informing you about the various repayment plans available to you
- Educating you and answering any questions you may have about your federal student loans
ECSI may perform other duties as related to its servicing of private and institutional student loans.
Types of Loans Serviced by ECSI
Unlike most other servicers, who service federal student loans made through the Direct Loan program, ECSI is specialized in that it focuses on servicing Perkins Loans and loans made through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).
Additionally, ECSI services private loans made on behalf of private lenders, and institutional loans made on behalf of individual colleges and universities.
How to Contact ECSI
If you’ve ever got a question about your student loans or worry that you may not be able to make a scheduled payment, you should immediately contact your student loan servicer to discuss the options available to you. Your servicer is there to provide support in helping you repay your student loans; they are judged on your success. Whatever you do, don’t just stop making payments hoping that your loan debt will go away!
ECSI’s business hours are 7:30am to 8pm EST Monday through Friday, and 8:30am to 5pm EST on Saturday. They are closed on Sunday. You can contact them in any of the ways listed below:
ECSI does not currently list a fax number on their website.
Unfortunately, however convenient it might be, you cannot contact ECSI by email due to security concerns and a desire to keep your account information safe. That being said, you can contact ECSI during its business hours by visiting the website and clicking on the “Live Chat” button in the bottom right of the screen.
100 Global View Drive, Suite 800
Warrendale, PA 15086
Your School Name
c/o Educational Computer Systems, Inc.
PO Box 718
Wexford, PA 15090
Alternatives to ECSI Servicing
Are you unhappy with your experience with ECSI as your servicer? While servicers must meet certain guidelines established by the U.S. Department of Education, unfortunately sometimes borrowers will still have a negative experience. In these cases, you may be wondering if it’s possible to change your servicer from ECSI to someone else.
Unfortunately, the answer is no. In the case of Perkins Loan borrowers, either the U.S. Department of Education or your institution owns the loan. In either case, they reserve the right to choose your servicer. In the case of private borrowers whose loans are serviced by ECSI, your lender reserves this right.
If you are set on no longer working with ECSI, though, you may have two options available: Student loan consolidation or student loan refinancing.
Student Loan Consolidation
Student loan consolidation is the process of merging (or consolidating) multiple federal student loans together into a single new federal loan called a Direct Consolidation Loan. In completing the application process for consolidation, you are allowed to request that your loans either be switched to a new servicer, or be kept with your existing servicer. Though this request isn’t always honored, it often is, making it a viable path forward for getting out of working with ECSI.
People pursue consolidation for many reasons, including a desire to make it easier to keep track of your student loans. These benefits do sometimes come at a cost, though, such as reduced options for repayment plans and a reset clock for forgiveness. Before charging forward with consolidation, make sure you understand the pros and cons of consolidating your student loans.
Student Loan Refinancing
In refinancing federal student loans, you are essentially taking those loans and converting them into a private loan through a new, private lender. Ultimately, you get to decide which lender you work with, which means that you can make sure that you’re using a lender who won’t service your loans through ECSI, if that’s important to you.
Refinancing can help you qualify for lower interest rates or lower monthly payments, depending on the terms of your new loan. But refinancing federal student loans means that you may be giving up certain perks or protections, such as flexible repayment plans, the ability to place your loans in deferment or forbearance, and more. It’s critical that you understand the pros and cons of refinancing your student loans before you make any decision.