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Cosmetic procedures are not health concerns, therefore many insurance companies consider them as elective. As a result, these insurance companies do not cover the cost of these beauty procedures. Some patients who want to have surgical or non-surgical procedures such as laser treatments, injectables, breast lifts, fat reduction, and all other procedures that solve physical appearance concerns must usually pay in out-of-pocket means.
These can include personal savings, credit cards, loans and payment plans given by doctors. “It is possible to undergo your desired cosmetic treatment, as long as you have planned the financial aspect beforehand,” says Dr. Usha Rajagopal, a known cosmetic surgeon based in San Francisco.
What are the options available if your medical insurance cannot cover your cosmetic treatment? If you are interested, read further to find out each option, and their possible pros and cons.
The use of a personal loan sponsored by your bank or a credit union is the quickest way to get money from a surgical procedure. Personal loans have a wide coverage, and as long as you present proper documentation as well as a good credit score, securing this type of loan is easy to obtain.
The advantage of the personal loan is that the interest rates are fixed. If you have a good credit standing, you can have a low-interest rate for a loan provided by your bank. Another benefit of a personal loan is that it can be discharged if ever your experience any extreme financial loss situation, through a Chapter 7 filing for bankruptcy. However, although interest rates are fixed, it is compounded over time. This can be also difficult to obtain if you have a less than impressive credit score as well.
The home equity loan is defined as the line of credit produced by the value of your home. This value is translated into cash, which can be used to pay your cosmetic treatment.
One advantage of home equity loans is that it is possible to have a good interest rate since the value is based on your current monthly payments. This interest rate is also tax deductible which means it will most likely be cheaper than a credit card loan. However, make sure to use the home equity loan option if you are certain that you can pay your dues over time. Losing equity in your home can mean you have to start overpaying your house, and the worst case scenario is you might even have the need to sell your house if you can’t pay for this type of loan.
Credit card loans are charged with usually a high-interest rate. However, you can do research about credits cards that have 0% or low-interest rates. If this is not possible, maximize this option by picking a credit card with a rewards system or a cash back.
This is also one of the easiest ways to obtain a loan for your procedure, as long as you have a good credit standing. Make sure to pay your monthly dues, as having an outstanding loan can also hurt your credit score in the long run.
This is one of the most known ways to finance a cosmetic procedure. If you already have a trusted Medical Credit Card such as CareCredit, you can opt to have it financed in this way, because some of these credit cards have no interest during their promotion time. Some of these promotion times can last from 6 months up to two years.
However, it is important to read the contract agreement before using Medical Credit Cards. Some patients encountered problems because they failed to pay within certain timelines which cancels the promotional rate of zero interest. Always look up the credit card fine print to see if you agree to their terms and conditions.
“Some doctors offer payment plans which can also be a good option for clients looking to finance their cosmetic procedure,” says Dr. Usha Rajagopal.
Although this is not the usual case as doctors would usually prefer not to be involved in the financial aspect of the procedure, there are some doctors who offer in-house financing. These are usually affordable with no interest rates because it does not involve middlemen. However, there is some downside to it as doctors may refuse additional treatments for you if you fail to pay your balance in the designated time.
These are some of the payment options you may want to consider if you wish to undergo any cosmetic procedure. Aside from these, you can also set a timeline of when you want to have the procedure, so you can have some amount of savings to accrue before that time. Discuss with your doctor your preferred options and seek advice on how you can finance your treatment.