Dental Financing: Outside Is Better

Post your comments about dental financing to our blog. Read the dental financing press release.

In this survey, the majority of dentists said they offer their patients outside financing options.

Very few dental practices these days offer their own financing. "We’ve never offered inside financing," wrote one prosthodontist. "We don’t want to deal with any problems, so we farm the financing out."


Urban dentists were twice as likely as their suburban and rural colleagues to not offer outside financing.

These days, people need financing options

  • “It is more difficult now for people to afford one more payment that they need to come up with the money for. In this economic climate, if it doesn't hurt to offer financing if they want to wait." (Pennsylvania dentist)
  • “I wouldn't be able to sell all the cases without it." (Michigan dentist)

Outside financing is good for dental practices

  • “It really increases production and collections. Patients love the 0% financing. California passed a crazy law restricting third party financing by dentists, but Arnie vetoed it. Hooray!" (California dentist)
  • “Outside financing has been a tremendous financial boon for our practice. Our accounts receivable used to be an absurdly large number. Patients have options that can still be 0% financing, we get our money within 48 hours of starting treatment, and there are no secondary issues with patients (missed appointments due to a lack of ability to make a payment, justification of non-payment by ‘inventing’ problems with the treatment rendered, and general feelings of discomfort due to the fact that they owe you a lot of money and may be feeling stretched to keep up the payments). Relationships stay where they should be when the payment is to a 3rd party." (Illinois dentist)
  • “I don't use outside financing enough." (New Jersey dentist)

Care Credit

  • "We use Care Credit." (California periodontist)
  • “We offer Care Credit and 50/50 start/finish (50% at initial appointment and 50%
    of fee the day of insert) within the office. In addition, we are flexible with long time patients." (New York dentist)

Inside financing can be a disaster

  • “We've never offered inside financing. Everyone I've talked to says DON'T DO IT! We offer Care Credit and have had no problems with it. The way we look at it, we don't want to get in the middle of financing with patients and deal with any problems, so we farm it out and let Care Credit deal with any problems that may crop up if a patient defaults on their payments. It's worth the 6-10% we give to Care Credit to do so." (Ohio prosthodontist)

Some offer inside financing

  • “We also offer four months inside financing. Our only problem with Care Credit is how many people cannot qualify, and this will probably get worse. Of course, that may also be their saving grace." (Texas dentist)
  • “We are surprised by the number of patients who are turned down by the outside agency. In most cases, we would have provided in-house arrangements." (Ohio oral surgeon)

No love lost for credit cards

  • “Credit card companies charge too much for their hardware, monthly service fees, and percentage of collections." (California dentist)


Note: Survey sample included 94 respondents.

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