Patients with bad credit displayed on their consumer reports face an uphill battle when paying for expensive dental work.
Traditional finance companies typically reject applicants with low FICO® or Vantage® scores when adverse items like charge-offs, collection accounts, and other derogatory items litter their report.
No credit check companies ignore the adverse history on consumer reports but minimize their risk by imposing hefty down payment requirements or limiting the amount patients can borrow.
While these two options could help some patients get the needed financing to begin treatment, other alternatives might help more – provided you keep an open mind to creative approaches.
Dental Financing Options with Bad Credit
Several financing options help patients with bad credit fund major dental procedures when the dentist makes you pay upfront as they often do for the most expensive emergency treatment.
A derogatory history on your consumer report results in low scores, leading to frequent denials. Therefore, you want to be creative to get those bad teeth fixed.
Bad Credit Dental Loans
Emergency dental loans for patients with a bad credit history will prove challenging to find quickly. The approval odds for this financing option are low when consumer reports include delinquencies, charge-offs, and other damaging marks.
Boost your chances of fast approval for a personal loan for dental work in three ways.
- Get your profile before a vast network of online finance companies
- Focus on subprime lenders who specialize in people with weak credentials
- Arrange the financing before choosing a local dental office
Credit Cards for Bad Credit
Dental credit cards for patients with a bad credit record will also prove elusive. Once again, the approval odds for this financing option are poor when your score is deficient.
Even if the finance company approves your dental credit card application, the account spending limit might be too low to cover a significant expense.
Dental assistance programs can help if you have no money to fix your teeth. The helping hand could lower the bill just enough to fit under the credit card limit.
Bad Credit Payment Plans
Dental payment plans for patients with bad credit are just another name for a financing program that allows you to get treatment today and pay later in monthly installments.
For instance, most dentists offering “in-house” payment plans refer patients to third-party companies. But by waiting until the last second, you lock yourself into a single lender, risking rejection.
You might want to consider these alternative strategies.
Local dental implant providers with payment plans for patients with bad credit could put you in a bind if you wait until the last minute. Implants are costly, ranging from $6,500 for a single tooth up to $50,000 for a full-mouth restoration.
A single lender will likely reject applications for such huge sums when you have a weak borrowing profile. It would be best if you broke the amounts into smaller bite-size morsels.
Tooth implant procedures do not happen in one day. Instead, the process occurs in stages with significant healing time between each step. Ask the oral surgeon and dentist to bill for each service as it happens. The financing of smaller amounts is more feasible.
- Bone grafting
- Body placement
- Abutment insertion
- Denture installation
Payment plans for orthodontic braces without insurance present a similar challenge for dental patients with bad credit histories. You risk rejection from the lone “in-house” finance company because of the hefty sums you must borrow.
Once again, breaking the amounts into bite-size chunks might help.
Patients wear braces for eighteen to twenty-four months. Ask the orthodontist for a bill-as-you-go arrangement to minimize the amount you must swallow in any period.
- Down payment
Monthly payment plans for veneers require a different strategy for patients with bad credit because the procedure does not take as long or involve as many steps. Now, your risk for rejection is even higher with the one “in-house” finance company because you cannot break up the billing into more digestible bites.
The cost of veneers can range from $500 to $10,000 depending on the number of teeth treated and the materials used. Picking the less expensive option is more realistic when you have a subpar borrowing resume.
- Composite veneers: $500 to $800 per tooth
- Porcelain veneers: $800 to $1,300 per tooth
- Lumineers: $800 to $2,000 per tooth
No Credit Check Dental Financing
Dental financing programs without a credit check offer modest help for patients with low FICO® and Vantage® scores to fund major dental work when the dentist makes you pay upfront, as most do for expensive treatment.
The leading companies utilize alternative data to make an underwriting decision. However, lending money without pulling a copy of your consumer report makes these companies extra cautious.
If approved, you might still face obstacles.
- Large down payment requirements (30%)
- Tiny borrowing limits ($2,000 maximum)
Therefore, you might want to consider these alternative strategies.
No Credit Check Payment Plans
Insurance-based dental payment plans have no credit checks. With this financing option, you pay for treatment in advance via premiums, but you save considerable sums on the most expensive services in exchange.
Insurance companies do not pull a copy of your consumer report when evaluating applications for coverage. Patients with bad credit history enjoy guaranteed approval and a hidden benefit.
- Dental insurance without waiting periods does not save much money when comparing the upfront premium payments to the downstream benefits during the early years. Still, the allowed amount is a game-changer.
- Dentists cannot charge more than the allowed amount for covered services when using an in-network provider. The contract rate is a highly discounted price negotiated by the issuing company, with thousands of prospective patients offering bargaining leverage.
No Credit Check Loans
A Flexible Spending Account (FSA) offers the ideal dental loan with no credit check. The benefits of this financing option are so compelling that all patients should utilize this approach, not just those with adverse histories on their consumer reports.
Take these steps to set up an FSA dental loan with no credit check.
- Elect to fund your FSA during your employer’s annual open enrollment (November & December are most common)
- $2,750 per individual
- $5,500 husband & wife
- Under IRS rules, your employer cannot pull a copy of your consumer report or consider your credit score and must accept all willing to participate
- Schedule the dental procedure at the beginning of the plan year (typically January)
- Your employer must reimburse qualifying expenses immediately – per IRS requirements
- You have up to 52 weeks to repay the loan via pre-tax payroll deductions made during the plan year
Your FSA dental loan without a credit check is also interest-free. By IRS rules, your employer cannot impose origination fees or charge for using their money over 52 weeks.
Not only is the loan interest-free, but you also save money when you make payments using pre-tax payroll deductions. You reduce your tax bill in three ways.
- Federal income taxes
- State income taxes
- FICA taxes (7.65%)
Your FSA dental loan with no credit check also features guaranteed approval, provided the treatment is not cosmetic. By IRS rules, the administrator must immediately reimburse all qualifying expenses.
- Guaranteed charges (necessary) are the amounts you pay for preventing and alleviating dental disease. Examples include fillings, braces, extractions, dentures, and implants.
- Ineligible charges (cosmetic) address appearance and do not meaningfully improve the function of your teeth, gums, or jaw. Examples include teeth whitening, gummy smile surgery, and veneers.