I Have Tried to Lower My Student Loan Payment Without Luck. – Scott

“Dear Steve,

I graduated from college with a ton of debt.
From AES:
Loan1 = $23,977.76
Loan2 = $35,285.42
Loan3 = $40,775.22
From Sallie Mae:
Loan1 = $2,664.58
Loan2 = $3,552.73
Loan3 = $5,567.47

My income is $42,000 / year.

I have tried to lower payments through AES, but according to the representative, they have made it much tougher to lower payments, and that I do not qualify because of that.

From what I understand, if I am paying over a certain percentage (15% I believe) of my income to student loans, I could qualify for lower payments. My government loans do not total to over 15%, but when combined with my AES loans (from private lenders), I am paying around 25% of my income into my loans.

I am also in credit card debt, and owe money to a couple collectors for bank accounts and an apartment complex.

This has ruined my credit, and the last time I tried to consolidate, I was denied.

Is there any way to lower my payments on my student loans, so I can pay off the bills that are pinging my credit score, so I can consolidate my loans?

I went to college to better my position in life, but with all this debt, for the time being, my life has become more difficult.

Thank you kindly for offering this advice free of charge.


Dear Scott,

Unfortunately both Sallie Mae and AES loans do not have some of the consolidation or payment adjustment features that a Department of Education backed loan has.

But I was surprised to see the IBR, Income Based Repayment, program on the American Education Services site, click here. Both AES and SallieMae offer some form of extended repayment terms.

I had the following questions that I’d like for you to answer before I can answer your question.

As soon as you can post the answers to my questions above I’ll be able to help.

If any reader wants to

You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

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Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
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3 thoughts on “I Have Tried to Lower My Student Loan Payment Without Luck. – Scott”

  1. Can you explain student loan repayment benefits in the Army?
    I have a lot of student loans from college and grad school. I have seen ads for student loan repayment upon joining the Army Reserve. Are these only for enlisted or officer, too? Any other details would be helpful. I’m also interested in any student loan repayment in other branches.

  2. “1. So who told you that the combined loans could not be factored into the IBR plan, AES or SallieMae?”

    AES told me that I could not lower payments, but not specifically referring to the IBR plan.

    “2. Did you fill out the IBR form from AES and submit it for consideration or did a phone representative just say that it was not possible?”

    I did not fill out a form, I only spoke to a representative.

    “3. Are your student loans current?”

    At the time I talked to AES they were not.

    Thank you again,

    • Scott,

      The logical first step here would be for you to follow the IBR link I gave on the AES site, download the request form, fill it out and send it in. I am not convinced that the phone representative knew the facts. AES is a big company and I doubt that one department knows what the other department is doing.

      Does that sound like a reasonable first step?

      Let me know what happens.



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