My Experience With FirstMark Services Has Been a Nightmare
Graduating with a Bachelors Degree in Accounting was a proud moment for me. Landing a great job soon after graduating is an even better feeling. Paying back your student loans? Not so much. Because my school was a bit expensive, I borrowed two types of loans including both Federal loans through Department of Education and a private loan to cover the portion that wasn’t covered. Regardless of who my servicer has been I have never had any issues because Department of Ed oversees all Federal loans. However, my private student loan situation has been a different story.
My Private Student Loan Was Transferred to FirstMark Services
My private student loan had originally been serviced through CitiBank since I began repaying in 2008. For those of you whom have dealt with Citibank you know that for the most part there are very little issues and really good customer service. I have made my $126 payment to Citibank everyday for the last 8 years. That’s a total of $12,000 and never had any issues. When I tried making my December 2016 payment it showed I owed $0. I contacted CitiBank and they stated my loan was transferred to a new servicer and that I would be receiving letters in the mail with details.
Nothing new here, I’ve dealt with this situation many times with my Federal loans. However, the only letter I ever received was on January 4, 2017 which was from FirstMark Services, who was now my new servicer apparently, stating that I was behind on payments from missing the December 2016 payment. This has to be some kind of mistake, right? I had never been late on my loan payments so I panicked and emailed FirstMark Services on January 5, 2017 to get more information regarding the situation because I was so confused. I didn’t even know who my new servicer was to even make a payment.
FirstMark replied back the next day on January 6, 2017 apologizing for the situation and that they would look into a forbearance option to catch me up on payments and get back to me. Unfortunately, I never heard anything back so I continued to email them about three times but never received any response. I thought about just paying off the full amount due but I took their advice on the Forbearance because they said that would relieve me of anything being reported to the credit bureaus.
FirstMark Services Finally Gets Back To Me
They finally called me on January 19, 2017. Finally! Keep in mind, in between those dates, my co-signer and I continued to receive harassing phone calls trying to collect payments. I would try to re-explain the situation but all they wanted was their payment. That’s the only thing that mattered to them. As I spoke to the gentleman he informed me that applying for a forbearance would help resolve my situation but I would have to verbally apply. Perfect, that sounds easy enough for me.
I thought this whole time they were already processing the forbearance due to their mistake but hey at least the situation is finally being resolved. Also, why would I have to file a forbearance when it was a communication issue on their part? Couldn’t they just make adjustments on their end? Anyway, I completed the verbal application and the man informed me that there is a good chance that I would be approved. Sounds good, lets get this rolling! However, he informed me that I had to first fill out the application and send it back into FirstMark. What!?! I couldn’t understand why they were dragging this issue along. I tried re-explaining my entire situation to this man because I don’t think they fully understood. But all the FirstMark representative kept stating was that it didn’t matter if I never received information I was still responsible to repay my loan because I signed the Promissory Note. Thank you sir I wasn’t aware of that! (*sarcasm*)
I completely understand this but once again I didn’t know who to send my payment to. The representative stated next that it would take some time for them to gather the forms and mail them to me. Confused once again because it’s a simple form that they can easily get to me. I deal with customers and paperwork all day. I get documentation to customers within minutes. He also informed me that if they didn’t process it by the 31st of January that it would be reported on my credit. Wait, what?!? I asked if there was any options to expedite me receiving the application to avoid this, maybe if I could get the form myself online or if he could email me the forms. There has to be a simple way. I mean they’re a major finance company services millions of dollars worth of loans. He stated that he would email the forms to me and I would be able to receive it within 2 days using this option. This helped ease my mind a bit. I figured that would give me enough time for me to get the forms back to them and be processed.
Where I Currently Stand With This Situation
Unfortunately, as I am writing this today it is February 1st and I have not received any emails or letters with the forms I need. I’m just beyond shocked how they seem to fail over and over again. At this point I’m just lost for words. This means the entire error they have made will now penalize my credit. FirstMark Services just seems to be playing games with me and not willing to assist in anyway. Either that, or they are just truly incapable of servicing loans. Maybe they’re understaffed? Do the employees just not care? I made payments for 8 straight years with CitiBank never missing one from 2008 to November 2016. Now, under FirstMark things have fallen apart. When it comes to collecting what they think is a late payment they will call all day long because they always have plenty of time for that part of business.
On February 3, 2017 I contacted FirstMark once again because I still have not received anything. They stated that they sent the email 1/24/17. Just to make sure I logged into my email while on the phone, checked my inbox, my spam folder and my deleted emails but nothing. The representative apologized and said they will resend it. I asked if they can send it to a different email to try something new. I’m desperate at this point. I also asked if she could send it while on the phone and once again “it’s going to take 1-2 days”. The good ol’ famous line I heard the last time.