How to be Successful with Offering In-House Financing
When implemented properly, in-house financing can result in key benefits for your practice and your patients.
Offering your patients payment plans to suit their pocket can increase revenue through higher levels of treatment acceptance while enabling them to get the dental care they need but could not otherwise afford.
In-house financing also avoids the problems often associated with dealing with third-party financing and insurance companies. So why don’t more dentists offer in-house financing? This is often due to concerns about how to put in place a good system, coupled with apprehension over straying from more conventional payment plan options.
The first step to success in offering in-house financing is to understand how it works.
What is Dental In-House Financing?
Dental in-house financing offers patients discounted treatments, usually in return for a monthly or annual subscription for preventive care such as cleanings, check-ups and X-rays. It works on the same principle as models pioneered by the likes of Amazon, the world's biggest online retailer. The company’s subscription-based membership program, Amazon Prime, typically sees members spending twice as much.
And similar results can be achieved by dental offices. Marketing initiatives like Amazon Prime have helped to nurture a consumer culture in which the option of paying in installments is high on the list of priorities when shopping around for goods and services – be it Amazon Prime Video or quality dental care.
Here’s an example of a successful dental in-house financing system. In 2016, North Carolina dentist Clifton Cameron explained in Dental Economics – the leading business publication for the dental profession – how his practice grew by 40 percent after he began offering in-house financing.
Overcoming the Uncertainty of Offering In-House Financing
Measures essential to ensure the success of in-house financing include:
- Making it simple for patients to sign up at home or in-office, on any device.
- Making it clear how payments will be spread out.
- Minimizing the risk of payment defaults.
- Enabling patients to get an instant deal.
- Soft credit checks that won’t damage patients’ credit scores.
This may seem like a lot of work but the challenges of creating effective patient payment plans can now be overcome thanks to digital dental in-house financing. This offers comprehensive packages supported by advanced technology that makes it easier than ever to set up a successful in-house financing resource.
You can also help to ensure the effectiveness of your in-house financing solution by making sure your patients understand the benefits.
Talking to Your Patients About Finance
Not wanting to appear pushy, you and your office team may be reluctant to raise the matter of finance with patients. A well-structured, patient-friendly in-house financing solution addresses this problem by making it easier to discuss finances with your patients.
When you explain the benefits to them of your in-house finance package, they’ll immediately appreciate your commitment to provide quality dental care despite financial obstacles.
Offering in-house finance during initial patient consultations can increase treatment acceptance, particularly for a comprehensive treatment plan or more advanced, expensive procedures.
You’re also likely to see a reduction in appointment no-shows or cancellations – if someone’s paid upfront for treatment, they’ll want to get their money’s worth. This also means you can take better care of your patients’ long-term health.
Benefits of In-House Financing
In-house dentist financing gives patients an easy way to manage the cost of their dental care while allowing you to increase profitability.
Current patients will welcome in-house financing as a valuable service while prospective patients will also be drawn to an affordable way of getting treatment they may be unable to find with other practices.
Once you’ve set up an effective in-house financing system, you should start to see benefits such as:
- Generating new business instantly with in-house financing that allows patients to sign up immediately.
- Patients opting for more treatments, and possibly costly procedures they would otherwise reject.
- Better cash flow through minimizing payment defaults.
- Avoiding middle man payments.
As we’ve seen, many consumers expect to be able to spread the cost of paying for goods or services including dental care. This means that offering in-house financing gives you a distinct advantage over competitors who don’t make treatments more affordable.
In-house financing can increase patient retention and loyalty and attract individuals who’ve been neglecting their oral health because they don’t think they can afford treatment. It can also see an increase in cosmetic treatments, which become affordable for more patients.
Benefits for Your Patients
With in-house financing, your patients can get the treatment they need without worrying about the cost. This also opens up a broader range of treatment options for them including aesthetic procures to enhance their smile.
Affordable dental care is particularly important for individuals who may find it difficult to get dental insurance coverage – such as retirees and self-employed people.
In-house financing makes it possible for these individuals to get treatment. This can bring you a new stream of patients while avoiding the hassle and cost of dealing with insurance providers.
Making In-House Finance Simple
Whether or not your patients have dental insurance or other dental benefits, offering in-house financing will allow them to get treatments without having to worry about the cost.
Implementing and maintaining a successful in-house financing solution is now more straightforward than ever thanks to digital technology.
For example, you can get an in-house financing resource with features such as:
- Payment sliders – a handy visualization tool that makes it easy for patients to see how their payments will work out.
- Incorporated soft credit checks – to protect your patients’ credit ratings.
- Help from leading credit agencies – this practically eliminates the risk of payment default.
If you need help with implementing an efficient in-house financing system, DentalROI provides comprehensive patient payment solutions and dental membership plans that enable practices to offer more affordable treatments to a wider range of patients.