Plastic surgery financing … is beauty worth the pain? Plastic surgery costs range from inexpensive cosmetic items to very expensive life-saving medical procedures. Whatever your need, here are some things to consider with regard to financing your next procedure.
Options for Plastic Surgery Financing
One of the most tempting methods ways to pay for plastic surgery is on an in-house payment plan from the clinic. Typically, a down payment is required, a credit report is taken from the borrower and then (assuming good credit history) monthly payments are taken on the remaining balance. This payment will be simplified for patients but is sure to include fees and interest.
Another financing option is obtaining a personal loan from your bank or credit union. This is likely the most affordable option to pay for cosmetic procedures. A personal loan has a standard loan term, usually 6-60 months and the borrower is paying interest but typically a rate between 3-9%. Credit unions tend to have more lenient terms and accept a wider range of credit scores. Medical credit cards can be used to pay for plastic surgery as well. These credit cards are specifically designed to offer patients very low or free financing for a fixed period of time. However, they do not come without risk:
“The CareCredit credit card typically comes with a 26.99% variable annual percentage rate and offers deferred interest for six, 12, 18 or 24 months.
If you charge $1,000 or more on this card, you may be able to instead opt for a 14.9% APR for 24 months. Different rates may apply for other term lengths and amounts charged.”
How to Finance Your Plastic Surgery
Before entering into any financial agreement, borrowers should know as much about themselves as they do about their potential financiers. This involves accessing your credit score prior to discussing any finance options. By knowing for what rates you’ll qualify, you can negotiate a better deal, lower payments or better terms. If your credit score is less than you’d hoped you may also save yourself from entering a poor situation.
In addition to checking your credit score, consider a number of financing methods to evaluate the potential cost of the procedure.
Inquire with the doctor’s administrators whether there is a preferred method of payment of a lower cost method. For example, a credit card will cost the facility to incur a charge of 2-3% and holds some risk of a “chargeback” by which the financial institution may challenge the validity of the charge and take it back until it can be further evaluated. That may or may not be lower risk to the facility than another method of payment so they may charge differently in accordance with their cost and risk.
Once the patient has a good understanding of their own financial position, an understanding of what the clinic prefers and what they incentivize, then they need to evaluate options available to them. This will ensure the best possible total price for the doctor and procedure of the patient’s choosing without putting them in a compromised situation.
Things to Consider When Financing
One of the most important things to consider when financing your procedure is how and when the loan amount will be repaid. Cosmetic surgery can be very expensive, is often not covered by insurance, and due to the nature of financing the loan (assets are unrecoverable), higher risk terms can be added to the loan. Borrowers should consider the entire cost of their operation, not solely the cost of surgery. Using breast augmentation as an example, the average cost of the procedure is $6300 in the United States. However, that’s the cash price. Financing in-house at a surgeon’s facility might include higher than normal interest rates, loan origination fees, and even fees to pay the loan depending on the method.
Affording Cosmetic Surgery
It’s not simply a matter of whether a patient can make the payments, it’s whether those payments will provide a level of burden that is sustainable. Some methods of cosmetic surgery will have additional costs outside of the procedure and finance charges.
For example, if a patient lost a substantial amount of weight and is having excess skin removed, this may mean that additional costs like new clothing items or skin care items will add to the total investment in the procedure.
Patients should also consider their loss of income while recovering from the surgery which can last several weeks depending on the procedure. They may have limited mobility and won’t be able to return to normal activities for some time. Extended absences can add to the burden of the event. Patients should weigh these considerations carefully before embarking.
There’s a lot to consider before financing a cosmetic surgical procedure. Ask yourself hard questions before you proceed about the total cost of any plastic surgery. Include those costs that may not be simply the headline figure such as loan origination, interest, late fees, but also secondary costs like loss of income, after-surgery care, and clothing.
If you’re looking for plastic surgery financing, reach out to Cambio who have a number of options for your procedure.