Hearing Aids: Benefits of rental program
Ever wonder if renting hearing aid is an option instead of buying?
Nearly one out of every 4 new cars on the road is leased in the United States, for 2 main reasons:
- Getting a car leased for less money per month than you could if you buy the car
- Ensures you always have the latest model with all the new additional attractive features
The model of leasing has now worked its way into the hearing aid world.
The typical process of getting hearing aids is going into an audiology clinic, followed by getting a hearing test based on your specific needs and hearing loss. Based on the outcome of the results, a certain type of hearing aid technology that suits you will be recommended. You will then pay for this technology, anywhere from a couple thousand dollars all the way up to $10,000, inclusive of the hearing aids, the fitting and all of your follow up care.
Usually one can opt to pay this in lump sum or by installment, however there are a few problems with these options:
- One has to fork out thousands of dollars upfront to get the hearing aids
- With monthly installment, one will be stuck with financial attachment which the payment might end up paying much more than the original price
- One may have to stick to the same hearing aids without caring about the latest and greatest technology
If you are the type that like to have the latest, greatest hearing aid technology, then a rental program might be a better option for you.
How rental program works?
Just like the normal process, one will visit the audiology clinic, conduct a hearing test and obtain recommendation for certain level of technology based on the results of the hearing test.
With rental program, instead of buying the technology, one could make monthly payments to lease the technology. By signing up a rental program, one will not only get a pair of hearing aids, but also the fitting services and follow up care that is inclusive of cleanings, maintenance, adjustments, and warranty. Furthermore, after 2 years, one may also entitle to get upgrade on the technology which are newest and latest.
Other benefits include:
- economical flexibility for the hearing impaired
- free exchanges of the device if the patient’s hearing changed
- ability to cancel anytime for any reason with no further financial obligation
- rental could be extended to 2 – 3 years with the option to purchase or turn in the old device for a new one
- no age limitation
Leasing vs bundled pricing
While the leasing concept is interesting, most only used it for patients who could not afford to purchase upfront. These programs are not common and only accounting for about 2 percent of hearing aid acquisitions. Thus, the well-known bundled upfront pricing system became the standard industry method for hearing aid acquisition.
Some may still choose bundled pricing than renting the hearing aids, as the patients tend to replace devices only when the hearing aids worn out since the new instruments every two or three years did not result in an increase in hearing benefit.
Rental program in today’s market
More and more people choose the option to rent hearing aids, as this option makes life easier. Although one does not own the hearing aids, he/she can make use of them. According to a study conducted, most of the people with hearing impairment prefer a rental program due to:
- Changing technology
Keeping up with technology is what most people are chasing nowadays, just like computers, smartphones and other products. Thus, it makes sense to take advantage of technological innovations through a short-term lease instead of a long-term purchase.
- Usable life of hearing aids
Renting offers patients the opportunity to upgrade their technology every three years and during the rental program, follow-up visits are included. And devices are always under warranty, resulting in a high-quality, low-stress hearing care experience.
- High cost of hearing health care
The high initial cost of sophisticated hearing aids compared with their average usable life expectancy positions hearing devices as an ideal rental product. Just like other rental programs for automobile, phone and equipment, hearing aid rental program provides the lowest possible payment for consumers who wish to use a product while maintaining the flexibility to change and/or upgrade in the future. Leasing is beneficial to those with progressing hearing impairment or for those who normally plan to replace their devices within a 3 to 5 years.
- Rental reduces the frustrations over today’s highly competitive market
Renting can be an alternative method to ensure the patient to return to the clinic and consider their options on hearing aids.
In a nutshell, renting hearing aids has some obvious benefits. It does not only solve the technology but also cost challenges that some people face.