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4 Tips for Getting a Loan for Dental Work

4 Tips for Getting a Loan for Dental Work

Unfortunately, dental work can be quite expensive, and if you don’t have dental insurance or your insurance doesn’t cover your procedure, you can be put in a pretty difficult situation. And if you’re in pain, you might not have a lot of time to wait to figure out where you’re going to get the money. Thankfully, there are a few techniques to make paying for these expensive procedures a little easier. If you’re considering take out a loan to pay for your dental work, save your wallet and make use of these tips.

Look at Your Budget and Make Sure You Can’t Afford It

Before you apply for a loan, it’s worth checking to see if you’re absolutely sure you can’t afford it otherwise. You may have already gone through all your checkbooks and tallied up all your budgets, but if you haven’t done this yet, it’s worth seeing if there’s anywhere you can tighten your pocketbook.

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If you can, categorize your expenses into wants and needs. Using a budgeting tool such as Mint or You Need a Budget can be helpful if you feel overwhelmed going through your expenses by yourself. Then, it’s as simple as eliminating the non-necessities from your budget. For instance, could you cut out all your entertainment costs for the month to help pay for your dental care? Even if you aren’t able to cover the entire cost of the procedure, you can at least limit the amount of money you need to borrow.

Check if Your Clinic Offers Repayment Plans

Your dental clinic might not expect you to pay the entire lump sum for your procedure right out of pocket. You should check with your dentist to see if there might be a repayment plan that would make paying for your procedure a lot easier. In addition, many dental practices accept government-based aid programs such as Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program; if you haven’t looked into these programs already, see if you are eligible. It’s worth noting that a repayment plan set up through your clinic probably won’t be reported to a credit union, so while you should make every effort to pay on time each month, you might get a little more leeway than financing through a loan or credit card.

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Even if you are eligible for aid and you’re able to work out a repayment plan with your dental clinic, there might still be some expenses that aren’t covered. While you might need to take out a loan to cover the rest of the costs, at least they will be made a little manageable when spaced out on a monthly basis. In addition, if you share your financial limitations with your clinic, they may be able to suggest lower-cost procedures or prescribe you less expensive medications. In cases such as these, every penny counts, and getting put on a cheaper prescription will help in the long run.

Finance With Your Credit Card or Dental Financing

If you have a credit card, you might be able to get away with putting your dental procedure on the card. Keep in mind that every credit card is different, so you should check your card’s terms and conditions to make sure this is possible, and if so, what the repayment stipulations are. In many cases, credit card companies will offer a 0% APR for the first year or so after signing up for a new card. As long as you’re able to pay off the balance within this time frame, you won’t have to worry about interest, but once you do slip out of this period, you can expect interest rates as high as 20% – or worse.

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If you don’t plan on using a credit card outside of financing your dental work, or you don’t want to get a credit card regardless, there are similar financing options that cater to helping patients pay for their health care. CareCredit is one such financing service, and they offer multiple repayment plans over different time frames. Of course, there are other similar financing service options out there, but if you’re having trouble finding the right one for your needs, talk with your clinic to see if they have partnered with any of these services.

Apply for a Payday Loan

If money is tight and you’re out of time, you can usually turn to a payday loan company for help. Nowadays, you don’t even need to leave your home to get one, as there are many online payday loans you can apply for. The appeal of this option is that it can be one of the quickest ways to get a loan with the fewest hoops you must jump through. Oftentimes, these companies require you to be over the age of 18 and working at a job earning at least $1000 every month. Once you can prove that, you’ll be in the clear for a loan.

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Many payday loans require no credit checks, meaning that you can rest assured that you’ll be able to pay off your expenses no matter where you are financially. Remember, though, that if you can’t afford to pay back the loan, you’ll rack up huge bills of interest and your credit score will be damaged. That said, if you’re confident that you’ll be able to afford the repayments of a payday loan, it might be the option for you. When it comes to health, you don’t want to leave things any later than need be.

Featured photo credit: 6 Ways to Make Sure You Get the Loan You Need via lifehack.org

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

The Definitive Guide to Get out of Debt Fast (and Forever)

The Definitive Guide to Get out of Debt Fast (and Forever)

Debt can feel crushing, like a weight that is always weighing you down. Looking at those numbers, it can feel as if you’ll never get out from under it. However, if you really want to learn how to get out of debt, it is possible with a great deal of focus and self-control.

Getting out of debt isn’t impossible. Like any big goal, all that it takes is an action plan to identify where you are and creating a plan to zero out your debt.

Identifying All of Your Debts

The first part of paying off your debt is getting a complete picture of what you owe. When you have everything written out in front of you, it makes it much easier to create an action plan. Depending on how much you owe, it might also help you realize it’s not as bad you might have originally thought.

Here’s how you can get started identifying your debts:

1. Own Your Debt

Before you start identifying all of your debts, take a moment to process that you have debt but want to get out of it.

Forgive yourself for any past mistakes, missed payments, or overspending. It might be painful to accept how much debt you have at first, but you must own it.

2. Make a Debt Tracker

It’s astonishing how few people ever created a tracker to understand their total debts. Most likely, it comes from not wanting to accept the guilt of having debt, but, if avoided, it can make it nearly impossible to get out of debt.

Open up a new Google or Microsoft Excel sheet and list out all of your debts. Start with the name of the creditor, interest rates, total balance, loan term length (if any), and the minimum amount due each payment. This will include student loans, credit cards, and any other type of debt owed.

3. Get Your Debt Number

Once you’ve made your debt tracker and taken the other steps, identify your total payoff number. This is crucial, as you will have a starting point and a clear goal that you are trying to achieve.

Prioritizing Your Debts

All debt is not created equal. It’s imperative to understand that there are different types of debt.

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1. Understand Bad and Good Debts

Bad debts are usually paying for things you want instead of always need. While there might be some emergencies that max out your credit cards, often times it’s excessive spending[1].

There are three main types of bad debt:

  • Credit Card Debt: The average American household owes over $16,000 in credit card debt!
  • Auto Loan Debt: According to CNBC , the average auto loan in the US is $30,032!
  • Consumer Loan Debt: Consumer loan debt isn’t as common as credit card and auto loan debt, but it’s still considered bad as interest rates are usually between 10-28%.

Good debt is identified as investments in your future. Here are three common types of good debt:

  • Student Loan Debt
  • Mortgage Loan
  • Business Loans

2. Decide Which Debt to Pay off First

Once you know each type of debt and their interest rates, you can begin to pay off debt quickly.

Focus on paying off bad debt first, regardless of if it is a credit card or auto loan. Start by paying off the loan with the highest interest rate first.

If you have several credit cards with different interest rates, you want to focus on the one with a higher APR. You will actually save more money by eliminating the card with the highest interest rate.

3. Don’t Pay the Minimum Amount

Paying the minimum amount digs you into a hole as interest rates will offset your payment. Even a small amount more than the minimum can help you pay off debt much faster.

Removing Obstacles to Pay off Debt Quickly

Creating a debt tracker and prioritizing a plan is simple, but avoiding temptation can be difficult.

1. Set a Reminder to Track Your Debt

“If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it.” -Peter Drucker

It’s so important to track your debt to ensure that you get it paid off quickly. Similar to working out and measuring your results, you need to track your debt constantly. Start with a weekly reminder, where you sign on and log your updated number. Did you increase, decrease, or stay the same?

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Regularly tracking your student loan balance can be incredibly motivating, as well. You will get a huge confidence boost each time you see your total debt amount decreases.

Set weekly and monthly goals so you can have short term wins and keep the momentum going.

2. Hide Your Credit Cards

If your biggest debt is credit cards, you need to eliminate temptation and remove them from your wallet.

Some people have gone to extreme measures by freezing their credit cards. Why? This would create an ice block around your card, which would require you to chip away at it slowly. This will give you time to think if it’s the best idea to buy that thing you’re about to buy.

3. Automate Everything

Willpower can be a huge downfall to paying off your debt. By automating your bills each month, you will ensure that willpower isn’t involved.

4. Plan Ahead

Getting out of debt will require some sacrifices, but with enough planning, you can make it work.

For example, if you know that you have a friend’s birthday or family dinner coming up, plan ahead for the costs. Whether you need to cut back on spending the week before, pick up a side job, or meet them after dinner, do what is needed.

5. Live Cheaply

The only way to get out of debt is to make some sacrifices on your spending habits. Find ways to save money each month so you can apply that amount to your outstanding debts. Here are some ways to save money each month:

  • Live with roommates
  • Cook dinners and prepare lunches for work instead of eating out
  • Cut cable and choose Netflix or Amazon Prime
  • Take public transit or bike to work

Finding the Lowest Interest Rates

The higher your interest rates, the harder (and longer) it will take you to pay off any debt.

If possible, you want to find ways to lower your interest rates to help get out of debt quickly. Here’s how you can get started:

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1. Maintain a High Credit Score

Your credit score will have a large impact on your ability to refinance your loans and receive a lower interest rate. If you have a low credit score, it’s unlikely you will be able to refinance your loans. Use these credit tips to increase and maintain an excellent score:

  • Never miss a payment
  • Don’t exceed 30% of your credit limit
  • Don’t sign up for more than one card at once
  • Limit hard inquires, like auto-loans and new credit cards
  • Monitor frequently with free credit-tracking software

2. Find Balance Transfer Offers

Start by opening a free account on credit.com. Credit.com offers you the chance to open a free account and see what type of balance transfer offers you can receive. Some of your existing credit cards might already have 0% or lower APR balance transfer offers available.

Contact each of your credit card providers to ask about lowering your rate for a one-time balance transfer offer[2].

If you do take advantage of this option, make sure that you use a balance transfer and not a cash advance. Cash advances have a ton of high interest fees (15-25%, depending on your credit card) and will only compound your debt problem.

How to Get Rid of Debt Forever

Setting up a plan, removing temptations, and getting the lowest interest rates is the first step to get out of debt.

1. Keep Monitoring and Adjusting

Once you have a plan, don’t get comfortable. Track your debt payoff plan and make the necessary adjustments when needed.

Monitor your credit scores with a free site like CreditKarma. The higher your credit score climbs, the more likely you will be to secure a new, lower-interest loan.

2. Earn More Money

There are only so many ways to save money. Instead of clipping another coupon or making sacrifices for your morning coffee, find ways to earn more money!

Think about it…it is much easier to find ways to earn an extra $1,000 per month than find $1,000 to cut from your budget.

Here are some examples of ways to earn more money:

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Talk to Your Boss

Have a conversation with your boss about current salary and/or commission rates. If you’re not satisfied or want a change, don’t be afraid to look around at other positions. Some of them might even have a student loan debt reimbursement plan!

Start a Side Hustle

This could be coaching students on the weekends, driving for Uber, or taking paid online surveys. There are tons of ways to make money outside your 9-5. Now that you have a clear plan to pay off your debts, you’ll be more motivated than ever to figure out creative new ways to earn money.

Build an Online Business

There are so many websites and blogs that earn money from ads, affiliates, and other online products. Find your niche and get started.

3. Celebrate Your Wins

As you progress in your debt payoff journey, don’t forget to celebrate your wins. You need to always reward yourself for the hard work and discipline that is required to get out of debt.

While you shouldn’t celebrate so big that it increases debt, make sure to factor in little rewards to keep you motivated.

4. Set New Financial Goals

Eventually, with a plan and these steps, you can rid yourself of your debt. Once you do, make sure to celebrate your monumental achievement, but don’t stop there.

Now, you can focus on acquiring wealth and increasing your net worth. Set new financial goals so you have a new target to aim toward. Here’s how to set financial goals and actually meet them.

These could be anything now that you are debt free! Think about where you want to travel, buying your first home, or saving for your future retirement. Just like before, make sure that your goals are specific, measurable, and achievable.

Conclusion

Congrats, you can now set a plan in motion to finally pay off your debt quickly (and hopefully forever)!

Remember, if you want to get out of debt quickly, it’s not always easy. Just like any big goal, there will be sacrifices, challenges, and problems to overcome.

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Featured photo credit: Pepi Stojanovski via unsplash.com

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