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If a recent trip to the dentist left pains in your mouth and your wallet, you may want to consider dental financing options to help cover the costs of your visit. As dental care costs continue to rise, loans for dentists are increasingly common, and many lenders are paving the way for no-hassle loans for dental work.
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To help you compare options for some of the best dental loans, we used the SimpleScore to provide apples-to-apples dental loans reviews of our top picks by comparing interest rates, loan amounts, customer satisfaction, support and fees for major dental loan providers.
Prosper advertises simple, flexible funding, but its repayment structure is relatively rigid compared to similar lenders. It only offers two repayment terms — 3 or 5 years — and your repayment schedule can’t be changed once the loan is initiated. Fortunately, the lender does approve borrowers with credit scores as low as 640, and Prosper will even allow joint applicants. If your credit score is suffering but you know someone with a stellar score, ask them to cosign your Prosper loan for better rates and higher chance of approval.
LightStream boasts a variety of loan terms, amounts and conditions, so borrowers will have plenty of options to choose from. Higher loan amounts come with repayment terms up to 12 years, which can help to keep monthly payments reasonable even on the highest loan amounts. LightStream doesn’t offer pre-approvals of any kind, but the lender does instill confidence by offering to beat any qualifying rate at other lenders and offering a loan experience guarantee on all loans within the first 30 days.
Disclaimer: Your loan terms, including APR, may differ based on loan purpose, amount, term length, and your credit profile. Excellent credit is required to qualify for lowest rates. Rate is quoted with AutoPay discount. AutoPay discount is only available prior to loan funding. Rates without AutoPay may be higher. Subject to credit approval. Conditions and limitations apply. Advertised rates and terms are subject to change without notice.
Payment example: Monthly payments for a $10,000 loan at 4.99% APR with a term of 3 years would result in 36 monthly payments of $299.66
OneMain offers a convenient online prequalification process, but borrowers who decide to move forward are obligated to visit a local branch in person to finalize the details of the loan. OneMain also charges much higher interest rates on much smaller loan amounts than many similar lenders, so borrowers needing large loan amounts may need to look elsewhere. Fortunately, OneMain tends to be more relaxed on credit score requirements, making it a good fit for credit-challenged borrowers who need funds quickly.
Not all applicants will qualify for larger loan amounts or most favorable loan terms. Loan approval and actual loan terms depend on your ability to meet our credit standards (including a responsible credit history, sufficient income after monthly expenses, and availability of collateral). Larger loan amounts require a first lien on a motor vehicle no more than ten years old, that meets our value requirements, titled in your name with valid insurance. Maximum APR is 35.99%, subject to state restrictions. APRs are generally higher on loans not secured by a vehicle. The lowest APR shown represents the 10% of loans with the most favorable APR. Active duty military, their spouse or dependents covered under the Military Lending Act may not pledge any vehicle as collateral for a loan. OneMain loan proceeds cannot be used for postsecondary educational expenses as defined by the CFPB’s Regulation Z, such as college, university or vocational expenses; for any business or commercial purpose; to purchase securities; or for gambling or illegal purposes.
Borrowers in these states are subject to these minimum loan sizes: Alabama: $2,100. California: $3,000. Georgia: Unless you are a present customer, $3,100 minimum loan amount. Ohio: $2,000. Virginia: $2,600.
Borrowers (other than present customers) in these states are subject to these maximum unsecured loan sizes: Florida: $8,000. Iowa: $8,500. Maine: $7,000. Mississippi: $7,500. North Carolina: $7,500. New York: $20,000. Texas: $8,000. West Virginia: $7,500. An unsecured loan is a loan which does not require you to provide collateral (such as a motor vehicle) to the lender.
The clean, simple design of Avant’s website reflects the company’s commitment to clean, simple financing. Approvals can be easily managed online or through the Avant mobile app, which is available on either Apple or Android platforms. Once approved, most borrowers receive funds the next day, and all deposits and monthly payments can be tracked through the mobile app. The only downside to Avant’s simple structure is the lack of additional perks — outside of the extremely fast funding, Avant only offers a no-frills personal loan with average interest rates, repayment terms, loan amounts and additional fees.
The actual loan amount, term, and APR amount of loan that a customer qualifies for may vary based on credit determination and state law. Minimum loan amounts vary by state. Avant branded credit products are issued by WebBank, member FDIC.
SoFi has risen to fame for its no-hassle student loan refinancing, but the company also provides a solid medical and dental loan product. Most notable is the lack of fees — including origination, pre-payment and late fees. That’s right — even when a customer makes a late payment, there are no additional fees added to the account. SoFi also offers loans of much larger amounts and at a lower interest rate than several competing lenders, and the company also provides unemployment protection for free to all borrowers.
Fixed rates from 5.99% APR to 20.69% APR (with AutoPay). SoFi rate ranges are current as of January 19, 2021 and are subject to change without notice. Not all rates and amounts available in all states. See Personal Loan eligibility details. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, to qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including evaluation of your credit worthiness, income, and other factors. See APR examples and terms. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.
Best mobile account management – Discover, Member FDIC
In addition to traditional account management and loan tracking features, the Discover mobile app also provides access to a helpful credit scorecard tool and updated credit monitoring information. Discover does have more stringent credit score requirements than some lenders, but those who get approved can look forward to no origination or pre-payment penalties.
What is a dental loan?
Dental work can be expensive, especially if you need more than just the occasional filling. Even if you have insurance, most dental insurers cap the coverage amount at 50% of the procedure costs. This can leave you strapped with high dental bills and out-of-pocket expenses.
A dental loan can help cover these costs without having to choose between your dental care and your regular monthly bills. A dental loan is an unsecured personal loan that can help you finance dental procedures that aren’t entirely covered by your dental insurance. These loans do tend to have higher interest rates than other loans, such as mortgage or auto loans, but they can be less expensive than floating the bill on your credit cards.
Check Your Personal Loan Rates
Answer a few questions to see which personal loans you pre-qualify for. It’s quick and easy, and it will not impact your credit score.
Dental loans work much like any other personal loan; you apply with a lender and if you are approved for a loan, the lender will issue you a check or direct deposit the funds in your account. Once you have the funds, you can pay your dentist for any work needed.
Since dental loans can be quite costly, it’s worth the time to shop around with different lenders and compare your loan options. Not every lender will grant a personal loan for the purpose of dental work, but most will. Be sure to disclose the reason and amount of your need for the most efficient loan processing. Before you apply, compare the loan terms and rates to determine which loan option will be the most cost-effective in the long run.
Although you probably won’t need $100,000 worth of dental credit, it’s nice to know that a lender is flexible. With dental loans, the minimum loan amount is also a consideration as you might end up having to borrow more than you actually need for a smaller amount of dental work, especially if your insurance covers part of the cost.
Since the repayment terms partially determine your monthly repayment amount, look for a lender that offers flexible terms. This includes both the length of time offered for repayment and the ability to repay the loan early without accruing additional fees. Most lenders offer repayment terms of 3 to 5 years, so lenders that allow longer terms can be the key to arranging an affordable monthly payment amount.
Paying back the loan
After taking out a dental loan, you’ll immediately begin making monthly payments unless the lender offers a promotional grace period. Different lenders will also accept different payment methods, including autopay, online payments or even in-person at a retail location. Be sure you know the payment options available so you can avoid any unpleasant surprises and late payment penalties.
How to choose the best dental loan for you
Choosing the best dental loan for your unique situation begins with a detailed understanding of your needs and ability to repay any amount borrowed. To narrow down the list of available lenders, complete the following steps:
Determine your need. If your chosen lender doesn’t offer loans in the amount you need, it may be time to look elsewhere.
Create a lender comparison. Before completing your first application, you should know which lenders offer the best rates and terms. For any lender you are considering, visit each website and gather details on the average loan rates, amounts and term lengths to see which lenders offer the most cost-effective financing.
Complete the application process. Submit all required documentation, references and personal information according to your top lender’s requirements. Many lenders offer easy online applications that take only a few minutes if your documents are prepared.
Once approved, review the terms and conditions. You won’t know your exact loan amount, interest rate, repayment terms and monthly payment amount until you have been successfully approved with a lender. Even if you are approved, you are not obligated to accept the loan — review the terms and conditions carefully to make sure there are no red flags or unpleasant surprises before you sign the agreement.
Sign the final paperwork on your top choice. If you apply and are approved for multiple loans, compare the rates and terms to find the loan that best fits your needs. Sign and return the final paperwork for your top choice in a timely manner; most loan approvals have a limited window of time before they expire.
If you’d like to avoid the higher interest rates of a dental loan, try asking your dentist for an in-house payment plan. The repayment terms might not be as long, but dentists’ offices are often willing to create a no-interest payment plan to help customers afford necessary treatments.
Customers with decent credit may find it is less expensive to finance dental work with a dental loan than with credit cards. Dental loans often have lower interest rates than those on traditional credit cards, so borrowers who can get approved at the lower interest rates should use a loan for dental work to finance any out-of-pocket costs and save money on interest.
There are many bad credit personal loan options available, including some that don’t require collateral. In addition, some dental offices offer in-house financing options that don’t require good credit, such as credit cards restricted to healthcare use or short-term payment plans.
Too long, didn’t read?
Different dental financing companies will offer varying APRs, loan terms and amounts. By outlining your needs and preferences in working with a lender, you can get a loan for financing dental work that covers your out-of-pocket costs without getting stuck with the higher rates charged by most credit card companies.
We welcome your feedback on this article and would love to hear about your experience with the dental loans we recommend. Contact us at email@example.com with comments or questions.
The SimpleScore is a proprietary scoring metric we use to objectively compare products and services at The Simple Dollar.
For every review, our editorial team:
Identifies five measurable aspects to compare across each brand
Determines the rating criteria for each aspect score
Averages the five aspect scores to produce a single SimpleScore
Here’s a breakdown of the five aspect scores and their rating criteria for our review of the best personal loans of 2020.
Why do some brands have different SimpleScores on different pages?
To ensure the SimpleScore is as helpful and accurate as possible, we developed unique criteria for every category we compare at The Simple Dollar. Since most brands offer a variety of financial solutions, their products and services will score differently depending on what we’re scoring on a given page.
However, it’s also possible for the same product from the same brand to have multiple SimpleScores. For instance, if we compare NetCredit’s personal loans according to our criteria for the best personal loans, it scores a 2.3 out of 5. But when we compare NetCredit according to the criteria for the best bad credit personal loans, it scores considerably higher, since the criteria for the latter review are more lenient (lenders who serve borrowers with bad credit will always offer higher rates, so we needed to adjust our category methodology to account for different industry standards).
We looked at the maximum APR for each lender — the lower their maximum rate, the higher their score.
We awarded higher scores to lenders with more generous loan sizes.
We leveraged the J.D. Power 2019 Personal Loan Satisfaction Study℠ to see how customers rated their experience with each lender. (If a lender wasn’t included in J.D. Power’s study, we skipped this aspect and averaged the four remaining aspect scores.)
We awarded higher scores to lenders with the most channels for customer support.
We looked at the three most common fees — origination, late payment, and pre-payment — and penalized lenders for each fee charged.
Julia Taylor is a freelance writer based in Nashville, TN. She takes complex business, financial, and technical topics and makes them easy to understand. You can find her work published on a variety of business blogs, including Paychex, Kapitus, Sanford Brown, Fortis Educational Institutes, American University of Antigua and Interest.com
Courtney Mihocik is an editor at The Simple Dollar who specializes in personal loans, student loans, auto loans, and debt consolidation loans. She is a former writer and contributing editor to Interest.com, PersonalLoans.org, and elsewhere.