Heartland ECSI is a student loan servicing company. In business since 1972, Heartland ECSI manages the repayment processes for colleges, universities, and private lenders. It is one of the largest student loan servicers in the industry, partnering with more than 2,200 colleges and universities. ECSI handles eleven million payments daily, and collects over $100 million in payments each year.
Heartland ECSI was formerly known as Heartland Educational Computer Systems, Inc., and is now commonly referred to as ECSI. As a student loan servicing company, Heartland ECSI will work with most types of student loans, providing customer service and assisting borrowers with repayment options as they pay back their student loans.
What Does Heartland ECSI Do?
Heartland ECSI does not offer student loans or student loan refinancing. Instead, it manages student loans on behalf of lenders. This includes collecting and processing monthly student loan payments. Lenders such as colleges, universities, banks, and credit unions outsource their student loan servicing to companies such as ECSI to more efficiently run their own business, as well as to streamline the student loan servicing process.
Heartland ECSI also provides customer service for borrowers. It offers educational material for students and borrowers, and provides tax information as necessary. ECSI will also answer questions about student loans and allow students to access information about their student loans through its online portal or by calling their company directly.
The company handles many types of student loans, including loans from colleges and universities, Perkins loans, private student loans, and refinanced student loans. Importantly, students cannot choose Heartland ECSI as their student loan servicer. Instead, lenders choose to work with Heartland ECSI, and will notify borrowers that Heartland ECSI is their servicer once repayment begins.
Benefits of Working With Heartland ECSI
One of the primary benefits of working with Heartland ECSI is that it offers a number of ways to pay back student loans, making the process simpler. This include online payments through a checking account (ACH or eCheck) or a credit card, phone payments through ACH or a credit card, and regular mail through a check or money order.
In addition, Heartland ECSI offers a robust online system to allow borrowers to access their information and take action related to their student loans. Their software allows students to make electronic payments, sign their names electronically on promissory notes, and attend entrance and exit interviews online. It can also send reports to a credit bureau and do IRS Form 1098 processing.
How Do Consumers View ECSI?
Borrowers who have loans through Heartland ECSI have a distinctly negative impression of the company according to online reviews. Overall, the reviews indicate that the customer service is not good and the website is hard to navigate. In addition, borrowers were angry that Heartland ECSI charged fees of 3.95 percent for making payments online. Perhaps more importantly, some borrowers found that payments went missing while the website was under construction.
Numerous borrowers have written online complaints stating that their payments were never posted to their accounts, and that they were then sent collections letters despite making payments. Borrowers then attempted to call Heartland ECSI to address the situation, only to be kept on hold for lengthy periods of time. In many situations, they would then be told that they could fix the situation by making an online payment, which would then result in the borrower being charged a fee on top of the payment.
The majority of reviewers had similar experiences of payments not being properly processed or posted, which resulted in negative credit reports or past due statements being sent. Many reviewers called Heartland ECSI a scam, or labeled it the “worst company in America.”
Despite these reviews, Heartland ECSI has an A- rating from the Better Business Bureau. However, on this same website, there are 140 complaints lodged against the company, and 31 negative reviews, with no positive reviews.