The CSLP Board will continue to provide additional student loan borrower resources to help consumers find qualified professionals and also make smarter repayment decisions on their own.
In support of the mission of the organization and its certification and training programs, the CSLP Board of Standards is committed to informing the public, specifically student loan borrowers, of the importance of using qualified professionals to advise about their student loan repayment plans.
Only Use Qualified Professionals To Help With Student Loan Repayment Planning
Unfortunately, there are numerous organizations focused on student loan borrowers offering quick fix help usually in the form of expensive consolidations.
What to Look For
Borrowers should be aware that the consolidation process is essentially free and can be completed online in a few minutes. But often, creating the smartest repayment strategy requires more thoughtfulness than a quick consolidation. For that reason, borrowers are encourage to seek qualified professionals with a practice in personal financial matters such as a CPA or Certified Financial Planner.
Knowledge of student loan programs AND personal financial counseling is critical. One option is to look for advisors who have the CSLP designation (Certified Student Loan Professional). These individuals are typically providing advising services as part of their daily business activities such as financial planning, tax advice, investment services, etc.
Using a CSLP can provide an additional measure of safety that the advice provided is based on the providing having demonstrated advanced knowledge about student loan advising along with experience in personal financial services. The CSLP will have completed a rigorous curriculum of coursework, have years of experience as a financial professional, and has made a committment to a high set of ethical standards in their practice. Find A CSLP
External Resources For Student Loan Help
StudentAid.gov is the official source of information from the U.S. Department of Education about federal student aid. Use it to research your options and:
- Find your loan servicer
- Estimate your payments
- Apply for an Income-Driven Repayment plan
- Apply for a Direct Consolidation Loan
National Student Loan Data System to inventory federal loans.
AnnualCreditReport.com to inventory private student loans.
The Institute for College Access and Success publishes state-by-state borrowing data, research, and policy analysis.
Student Loan Borrower Assistance.org from the National Consumer Law Center provides free about borrower-focused information about repayment options, avoiding and getting out of default, and dealing with collections agencies.
The student loan decision tree from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau guides borrowers through basic student loan options.
US Department of Education Student Loan Ombudsman may help resolve issues with loan servicing.