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A guide to financing dental work

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Dental work can be costly. From a simple checkup to more comprehensive reconstructive or cosmetic surgery, dental bills can be outside of many Australians' budgets. But whether the dental work is necessary or elective, there are available financing options. Here we outline the different forms of dental finance available and what's involved.

⚠️ Warning about Borrowing

payday-warningDo you really need a loan today?*

It can be expensive to borrow small amounts of money and borrowing may not solve your money problems.

Check your options before you borrow:

  • For information about other options for managing bills and debts, ring 1800 007 007 from anywhere in Australia to talk to a free and independent financial counsellor
  • Talk to your electricity, gas, phone or water provider to see if you can work out a payment plan
  • If you are on government benefits, ask if you can receive an advance from Centrelink: Phone: 13 17 94

The Government's MoneySmart website shows you how small amount loans work and suggests other options that may help you.

* This statement is an Australian Government requirement under the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009.

What is a dental loan?

A dental loan is a form of personal loan that is used to finance dental work. This may be a standard unsecured personal loan or secured personal loan, or a specialised loan from a specific lender. Some dental practices may also offer their own financing programs, or may be partnered with interest-free 'buy now, pay later' services.
Credit cards can also be used to pay for dental bills in some cases.

Plenti Fixed Rate Personal Loan

Plenti Fixed Rate Personal Loan

From

6.49 % p.a.

fixed rate

From

6.84 % p.a.

comparison rate

  • Get a personalised comparison rate based on your credit score
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100% confidential application

Plenti Fixed Rate Personal Loan

Plenti offers this unsecured personal loan with a fixed or variable rate. Receive a tailored interest rate from 6.49% p.a. based on your risk profile.

  • Interest rate from: 6.49% p.a.
  • Comparison rate: 6.84% p.a.
  • Interest rate type: Fixed
  • Application fee: From $149 to $599
  • Minimum loan amount: $2,001
  • Maximum loan amount: $45,000
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Data indicated here is updated regularly
$
Name Product Interest Rate (p.a.) Comparison Rate (p.a.) Min Loan Amount Loan Term Application Fee Monthly Service Fee Monthly Repayment
Plenti Fixed Rate Personal Loan

From 6.49% (fixed)
6.84%
$2,001
3 to 5 years
From $149 to $599
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate between 6.49% p.a. and 11.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A flexible loan with amounts from $2,001 and terms starting from 3 years. Interest and comparison rates calculated for a loan term of 5 years.
Harmoney Unsecured Personal Loan

From 6.99% (fixed)
7.79%
$2,000
3 to 5 years
$575 ($275 for loans of below $5,000)
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate between 6.99% p.a. and 25.69% p.a. based on your risk profile.
Apply for a loan up to $50,000 and repay your loan over 3 or 5 year terms.
OurMoneyMarket Personal Loan

From 6.75% (fixed)
6.96%
$2,001
1 to 7 years
1.5–6% of your total loan amount
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate from 6.75% p.a. to 20.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A personalised loan from $2,001 to $75,000 that varies based on your credit history and financial situation.
Alex Personal Loan

From 6.95% (fixed)
6.95%
$2,100
6 months to 5 years
$0 (waived $295)
$0
You'll receive a fixed interest rate from 6.95% p.a. to 19.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
Borrow between $2,100 and $30,000 from 6 months to 5 years. Benefit from no ongoing fees. Note: The establishment fee of $295 is waived for all applications until 31 October 2020. Terms & conditions apply.
SocietyOne Unsecured Personal Loan (2-3 years)

From 6.99% (fixed)
6.99%
$5,000
2 to 3 years
from 0% to 5% (capped at $995)
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate between 6.99% p.a. and 17.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A loan from $5,000 to use for a range of purposes. Benefit from no ongoing fees and no early repayment fee.
SocietyOne Unsecured Personal Loan (5 years)

From 7.99% (fixed)
7.99%
$5,000
5 years
from 0% to 5% (capped at $995)
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate between 7.99% p.a. and 20.49% p.a. based on your risk profile
A loan from $5,000 to use for a range of purposes. Benefit from no ongoing fees and no early repayment fee.
Plenti Variable Rate Personal Loan

From 5.79% (variable)
6.78%
$2,001
1 to 3 years
From $149 to $599
$0
You'll receive a variable rate from 5.79% p.a and 11.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A flexible loan with amounts from $2,001 and terms starting from 12 months. Benefit from transparent costs and a rate estimate before you apply.
NAB Personal Loan Unsecured Fixed

From 9.99% (fixed)
10.88%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$150
$10
You'll receive a fixed rate between 9.99% p.a. and 18.99% p.a. ( 10.88% p.a. to 19.83% p.a. comparison rate) based on your risk profile
An unsecured loan up to $55,000 you can use for a range of purposes and pay off over up to 7 years. Note: Majority of customers will get the headline rate of 12.69% p.a. (13.56% p.a. comparison rate) or less. See Comparison rate warning in (i) above.
Pepper Money No Fee Personal Loan

From 6.95% (fixed)
6.95%
$5,000
18 months to 7 years
$0
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate between 6.95% p.a. and 17.95% p.a. based on your risk profile
Borrow from $5,000 to $15,000 and use for a range of purposes. Pay no upfront, early repayment or ongoing fees.
Symple Loans Personal Loan

From 5.75% (variable)
6.47%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
from 0% to 5% of the loan amount
$10
You'll receive a personalised interest rate from 5.75% p.a. to 21.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
Borrow up to $50,000 to pay for what you need.
Wisr Personal Loan

From 7.95% (fixed)
8.78%
$5,000
3 to 5 years
$595 (Establishment Fee)
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate between 7.95% p.a. and 19.45% p.a. based on your risk profile
A loan from $5,000 that charges no fees for extra or early repayments. Keep in mind security is required in some cases.
Heritage Bank Fixed Personal Loan
7.99% (fixed)
8.62%
$5,000
1 to 5 years
$200
$5
Choose a fixed rate loan and receive a comparison rate of 8.62% p.a.
Fixed rate loans are available up to $100,000 on terms from 1 to 5 years.
CUA Unsecured Fixed Rate Personal Loan
9.89% (fixed)
10.14%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$175
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate of 9.89% p.a.
An unsecured loan from $5,000 with flexible repayments and no monthly fee.
NAB Personal Loan Unsecured Variable Rate

From 9.99% (variable)
10.88%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$150
$10
You'll receive a variable rate between 9.99% p.a. and 18.99% p.a. ( 10.88% p.a. to 19.83% p.a. comparison rate) based on your risk profile
An unsecured loan up to $55,000 you can use for a range of purposes. Benefit from fee-free additional repayments and a redraw facility. Note: Majority of customers will get the headline rate of 12.69% p.a. (13.56% p.a. comparison rate) or less. See Comparison rate warning in (i) above.
CUA Unsecured Variable Personal Loan
11.89% (variable)
12.15%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$175
$0
You'll receive a variable rate of 11.89% p.a.
Borrow from $5,000 with the option for flexible repayments and no monthly fees.
Heritage Bank Standard Variable Personal Loan
11.99% (variable)
12.61%
$5,000
1 to 10 years
$200
$5
Choose a variable rate loan and receive a 12.61% p.a. comparison rate
Variable rate loans are available from $5,000 - $100,000 on terms of 1 to 10 years.
MoneyMe Personal Loans

From 8.99% (fixed)
10.68%
$3,001
2 to 5 years
5 - 8% of the principal borrowed, capped at $1,200
$0
You'll receive an interest rate between 8.99% p.a. and 29.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A flexible personal loan from MoneyMe with access to cash when you need it.
Latitude Personal Loan (Unsecured)

From 7.99% (fixed)
9.24%
$3,000
1 to 7 years
$250 (Loans under $5000 - $140)
$13
You'll receive a fixed rate between 7.99% p.a. and 19.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
Apply for what you need from $3,000 and use it for a range of purposes. Repay weekly, fortnightly or monthly.
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Sunshine Short Term Loans

This is a short-term loan offer with a fast and easy online application for good or bad credit borrowers. You can apply today to get approved for up to $2,000. Get your loan funded in 30 minutes - conditions apply.
  • Loan Amount: $2,000
  • Loan Term: 9-14 weeks
  • Turnaround Time: 30 minutes - conditions apply
  • Fees: 20% of loan amount + 4% of loan amount each month
  • Bad credit borrowers OK
  • Quick & easy Approval
Sunshine Short Term Loans
  • Bad credit applicants considered
  • Fast approval service
  • Borrow up to $2,000
Go to site More info
Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Maximum loan amount Term of Loan Turnaround time Arrears Fee Costs Fortnightly Repayment (for $1500 Loan)
Sunshine Short Term Loans
$2,000
9-14 weeks
30 minutes - conditions apply
$35
20% of loan amount + 4% of loan amount each month
$396
A small loan up to $2,000 that you repay over 9-14 weeks. Loans approved and funded in as little as 30 minutes.
Nimble Short Term Loan
$2,000
62 days to 9 months
1 hour - conditions apply
$15
20% of loan amount + 4% of loan amount each month
$372
A loan up to $2,000 with terms up to 62 days to 9 months. Centrelink cannot be your primary source of income.
Fair Go Finance Small Loan
$2,000
3-12 months
1 business day
$35
Establishment fee 20% of loan amount + monthly fee 4%
$354
A small loan between $500 and $2,000 that can be funded in 24 hours.
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How do dental loans work?

Dental loans work by a bank or lender letting you borrow money to cover the costs of dental surgery or other dental costs. Depending on the type of loan, potential borrowers may be able to borrow as little as $100 or as much as $50,000.

Generally, the higher the loan amount, the longer people have to pay it back. However, this will depend on the financial circumstances of the applicant. Customers with bad credit ratings, for example, may only qualify for short-term, high interest loans, otherwise known as payday loans. Loan terms usually vary from between 16 days (for high interest payday loans) to around seven years. Or, if someone opts for a credit card, they may be able to choose a longer repayment period. Customers should be aware however, that credit cards usually come with higher interest rates than traditional personal loans.

How much does dental work cost?

Most people are aware that dental work can be expensive, but just how much can a visit to the dentist cost? For diagnostic preventative work, that is, where you visit the dentist for an oral exam, fluoride, or sealing, the costs can be between about $30 to $100, although calculus removal can cost as much as $150.

For surgery, such as extraction, costs will look closer to $300+. For restorative work, including fillings and cusp capping, you should be expecting to pay closer to $400. When you get into full surgical and restorative work, the bill could be anywhere between $1,500 and $5,000. Braces can cost anywhere between $5,000 and $10,000. For families with one or more children in need of braces, the costs can really add up.

Can I get dental work abroad?

With the prices of Australian dentistry so high, it is little wonder that a number of Aussies are heading overseas for dental work, otherwise known as 'medical tourism'. Depending on the level of work you require, the cost of a flight combined with the cost of care may work out cheaper than paying a local dentist.
However, it's important to have the right insurance prior to making an overseas trip for healthcare services, as there may be risks involved.

Dental work loan options

Before applying for a dental loan, it's important to know the types of loans that are available. If you’re looking at getting dental loans then you have a few options open to consider:

  • Secured loan. A secured personal loan is usually used to finance a car purchase, but there are lenders who will let you make other purchases with this type of loan. Secured loans require asset security in case the borrower defaults on the loan. Asset security usually comes in the form of a vehicle or equity in your home, but some lenders also accept valuable jewellery or art as security. Assets must have a value greater than or equal to that of the loan. Secured loans often come with lower rates because the lender is taking less of a risk.
  • Unsecured loan. This type of loan does not require the use of any type of asset as a guarantee, but as such usually comes with higher rates and potentially higher fees because the lender is taking on a bigger risk. With unsecured loans customers can usually borrow between $1,000 and $50,000 and can use the loan amount for almost any purpose they wish.
  • Short-term loan. These loans, also called payday loans, are usually for amounts between $100 and $5,000 and may be an option if you need finance for emergency dental surgery. However, these loans usually have high fees and high interest rates attached to them. For payday loan amounts up to $2,000, Australia has a fee cap of 24% per $100 borrowed, made up of a 20% establishment fee and a 4% monthly fee. For example, a payday loan of $2,000 repaid over 1 year would total to repayments of $3,360 - that's a cost of $1,360 on a relatively small loan. Repayment periods on payday loans are usually quite short, usually between 60 days and one year.
  • Line of credit or overdraft. A line of credit or overdraft is where the bank allows you to overdraw your account up to a certain limit. You are able to redraw anywhere up to and including this limit and then repay it over time at a fixed rate of interest.
  • Credit card. You also have the option of using a credit card to pay for dental work. Depending on the limit of your card you may be able to cover the costs of surgery or any other visits or check-ups. Just keep in mind that the rate of interest on your credit card is likely to be higher than the rate of interest offered by other personal loans, and with no set repayment period you may fall into debt if you do not keep on top of your payments.
  • Specialist dental loan. There are some lenders that offer loans tailored to dentistry and can help you finance a range of procedures. Specialist loans include payment plans through your dentist as well as third-party providers.
  • Buy now, pay later. Buy now, pay later providers frequently partner with dental clinic to offer interest-free credit for dental procedures. Buy now, pay later solutions can be free or low-cost to use (if payments are made on time) but might be subject to limits and certain eligibility criteria. Repayments are usually required in 4-6 equal fortnightly installments.

Some personal loans that could be used for dental work:

Compare dental loan options

Some questions to consider before applying for a dental loan:

  • What repayments can I afford? Use a loan calculator to work out the cost of a loan's repayments based on the loan’s interest rate and ongoing fees. See if this repayment will work with your budget.
  • How much do I need to borrow? Lenders place restrictions on how much customers can borrow with certain loan products, so check to see their minimum and maximum loan amounts before submitting an application. Keep in mind you may not be approved for the full amount you want, regardless of whether it’s below their maximum amount offered, as this will depend on the income and credit history of prospective borrowers.
  • When do I need the money? Different lenders will offer different turnaround times, so it might be worth talking to the lender to find out when could expect to be approved before you apply.
  • What is my credit history like? For borrowers with marks on their credit rating, restrictions to the types of finance that they will be able to access may apply, and they will likely be subject to higher interest rates than customers with good credit. Check the eligibility criteria offered by lenders prior to submitting an application. Borrowers can also check their credit score online.

Can I withdraw my super to pay for emergency dental work?

While you're normally not able to access your super until you reach preservation age, there are certain situations that will allow you to access your super early. Under 'compassionate grounds' you can apply with the Department of Human Services to access your super early to pay for medical costs, which includes dental work.

Before accessing your super, consider other options you may have available.

How to apply for a dental loan

The application process will differ depending on the lender that you apply with, as will the eligibility criteria. However, the minimum requirements for any finance application are that:

  • You are aged 18 or over.
  • You are an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • You have some form of regular income

Click through to review pages on finder.com.au to find out what eligibility criteria is set by each lender and what documents you need to apply. If you've found a loan you want to apply for, click "Go to Site" to start your application.

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6 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    KathrynJuly 25, 2017

    I need dental work. I need dentures. I’ve had 2 implants but one is not good and needs replacing. Today my dentist tells me I need 4 implants in total in my lower jaw.
    Today I had impressions taken for dentures and the sister was over $1500. I have private health insurance but it’s not going to cover a fraction of the cost.
    I’m so worried. I’ve had a really traumatic time with my oral work since last October when I had a full dental clearance.
    What are my options?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      RenchJuly 28, 2017Staff

      Hi Kathryn,

      Thanks for reaching out to us.

      You can check this page for helpful information and where you can compare your options. Please fill out the search tool on the page and click on ‘Search Policies’ to provide you a list of dental insurances that suit your needs.

      Hope this helps.

      Best regards,
      Rench

  2. Default Gravatar
    annaOctober 11, 2016

    I need dental loan of $600 for Thursday 12/10

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ElizabethOctober 11, 2016Staff

      Hi Anna,

      I can’t recommend a lender for you but you can compare your personal loan options on the page above. Click through to the review page to see eligibility criteria and when you can expect to receive your loan amount.

      Hope this helps,

      Elizabeth

  3. Default Gravatar
    JoanneSeptember 3, 2016

    I would like to get a loan to get my theeth fixed please thank you

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ElizabethSeptember 5, 2016Staff

      Hi Joanne,

      You can compare unsecured personal loans on the page above, which may be used for dental work (depending on your eligibility). If you’re looking for a short-term loan, you can compare them on this page.

      Hope this helps,

      Elizabeth

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