5 Things to Consider Before Applying for a Dental Care Loan

Some dental offices offer in-house payment plans that allow patients to finance procedures over several months with low interest rates. This is a good option for individuals with credit scores that are too low to qualify for traditional financing options.

Alternatively, individuals with excellent credit scores can apply for personal loans to fund dental expenses. These loans typically have a 0% APR introductory period and fixed interest rates.

Do Your Research

When you’re looking for a dental care loan, it’s essential to do your research. Many lenders have varying rates, terms, and borrowing limits. It would help if you also considered how much you will have to pay each month and whether or not this will affect your credit score.

Some dentists offer private payment plans that you can apply for in person. These typically require a 25%-50% down payment and a set monthly payment after that. It would help to ask other dentists in your area about their payment plans. They may be able to match or beat the prices of other dental offices.

You can use personal loans to finance dental work, including veneers, crowns, or a complete smile makeover. 

Consider Alternative Financing Options

Many dental offices offer in-house financing through third-party lenders to help patients pay for their procedures. These loans may not require a credit check, benefiting those with less-than-stellar credit histories. However, these plans usually have higher interest rates than personal loans and medical cards.

A personal loan is an installment loan you repay over a specific period with fixed monthly payments. The terms and rates for this type of loan will depend on your borrower profile, including your credit score, income, and existing debts.

Medical credit cards are designed to help you pay for healthcare expenses, including dental care, but they often come with high-interest rates, so you should only use them if you know you can afford the balance repayments. Another option is a 0% APR credit card, which offers an introductory period during which you do not incur any interest charges. However, these cards are usually only available to those with good credit. Lastly, negotiate with your dentist for cash discounts on procedures, saving you money in the long run.

Ask Your Dentist for a Discount

Many dental professionals work with third-party credit arrangements, which can be lucrative for dentists. These credit arrangement companies can do mass advertising, often bringing in more patients. However, this comes at a cost, and one of those costs is the fee that the dentist pays to the credit arrangement. Because of this, many dentists may be unable to offer cash discounts.

While this isn’t ideal, it can be worth asking your dentist if they will cut you a deal. If they have the room in their budget, it could save you a lot of money.

Another thing to remember when seeking financing for dental care is that you will need a good credit score to get approved. This is because almost all loans will require a personal credit check to be approved, and the lender will also be looking at your financial history to determine how well you’ve managed your debts in the past. Strong credit can help you get a lower interest rate and make your monthly payments easier to manage.

Don’t Forget About Your Credit Score

A personal loan can be preferable to dental provider financing plans because you’re not locked into using the funds for only dental procedures. In addition, many lenders don’t differentiate between medical and general personal loans and may charge a similar interest rate. Getting prequalified with several lenders allows you to compare rates and terms.

A lot of people rely on personal loans to pay for dental work. Some even use their FSA/HSA (flex spending or health savings account) benefits, allowing them to set aside money without paying taxes. However, this type of financing can be expensive, mainly if used for multiple procedures.

Luckily, it’s possible to find lenders that offer low credit scores for dental care. You’ll need to research and ensure that your chosen lender is reputable. Also, ensure a good reason for needing the loan and a plan for how to repay it. Finally, don’t forget that the fiscally responsible thing to do is treat dental problems early before they become more severe.

Be Prepared to Make Payments

If you have no other options (like using a flex spending or health savings account), a personal loan may be your only way to pay for dental work. But ensure you understand the terms and your interest rate before committing. It’s also important to weigh other financing options like a savings plan or asking for a cash discount.

Almost every dentist we interviewed agreed that building your team early is essential, primarily financially and legally. A solid credit score and a history of making timely payments are critical to getting the financing you need. A clear understanding of the loan process can help you avoid mistakes that could cost you big.