Difference Between Student Loan Lender and Student Loan Servicer

student loan lenderIf you’re new to the world of student loans, and you see the term “lender” or “servicer” you might mix the two up. Though some places use the titles interchangeably, it can lead to confusion. So let’s clear up the difference between a student loan servicer vs lender!

What is a Student Loan Lender?

Lenders originate the student loans—meaning they are the ones who fund the loan you’re applying for. They’re the ones lending you the money.

If you’re applying to a federal loan, the federal government is your lender. If you’re applying for a private loan, you’ll be able to choose from a variety of lenders—such as Credible, Sallie Mae, or LendKey.

What is a Student Loan Servicer?

For all intents and purposes, student loan servicers are your “customer service.” They are the ones you’ll interact with the most. They’ll help you manage the loans, but they do not originate or set the terms for the loans.

Servicers will help you if you’re having trouble with your repayment plan or need to change your address or other personal information. You do not get to pick your servicer. During the course of your loan, your servicer might change a few times.

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Lender Rates (APR) Eligibility
Citizens logo.
6.98%-15.04%* Variable
5.99%-14.00%* Fixed
Undergraduate and Graduate
Sallie Mae logo.
6.37% - 16.70% Variable
4.50% - 15.49% Fixed
Undergraduate and Graduate
Credibe company logo.
4.98% - 16.85% Variable
4.07% - 16.49% Fixed
Undergraduate and Graduate
Lendkey company logo.
6.07% - 11.31% Variable
4.39% - 10.39% Fixed
Undergraduate and Graduate
Ascent company logo.
6.24% - 15.85% Variable
4.29% - 15.76% Fixed
Undergraduate and Graduate
6.54% - 11.08% Variable
3.95% - 8.01% Fixed
Undergraduate and Graduate
Earnest company logo.
5.62% - 16.85% Variable
4.39% - 16.49% Fixed
Undergraduate and Graduate
4.98% - 12.79% Variable
8.42% - 13.01% Fixed
Undergraduate and Graduate
College Raptor is not a loan lender and does not assume responsibility for suggesting a loan to a user who may not be eligible for it. Rates, terms, conditions, eligibility, approval, and other considerations are the decisions of the lenders and may vary depending on which lender or marketplace the user selects. We urge users to carefully consider and review all loan options and terms before committing to taking out a loan.

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