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Bariatric Surgery Financing

Bariatric surgery can improve your health and overall quality of life. But it may run you thousands of dollars, even if you have insurance as you may have copays and deductible costs. With a personal loan, however, you can cover the costs of bariatric surgery and feel more confident in your own...

Bariatric Surgery Financing
Anna Baluch
Written by:Anna Baluch
Freelance Copywriter

While bariatric surgery can change your life for the better, it’s not cheap. It may be anywhere from $15,000 to $25,000 and there’s no guarantee your insurance company will cover all or some of the procedure.

Using an unsecured personal loan to finance your bariatric surgery can alleviate some financial stress and help you achieve the weight loss you’ve been longing for. Our team of financial experts reviewed and ranked more than 30 online lenders to help you get funded.

lightstream._logo
  • Funding as soon as the same day
  • Allows joint applications
  • No origination fee
Min. Credit Score
Min. Credit Score Not Disclosed
Loan Amounts
Loan Amount $5K-$100K
Est. APR
Loan Repayment 24-240 months
lendingclub_logo
  • Wide range of personal loans
  • Co-signer option
  • Soft credit pull
Min. Credit Score
Min. Credit Score Not Disclosed
Loan Amounts
Loan Amount $1K-$40K
Est. APR
Loan Repayment 36-60 Months
onemain_logo
  • Offers joint and secured loans
  • Accepts low credit borrowers
  • Can fund a loan the same or next business day
Est. APR
Loan Repayment Up to 60 months
Loan Amounts
Loan Amount $1.5K-$20K
Min. Credit Score
Min. Credit Score Undisclosed

How to Choose the Best Bariatric Surgery Financing

When you do your research, you’ll find that there are many ways to finance your bariatric surgery. Our expert team considered these parameters during our search for the top lenders.

  • Loan Features: Weight loss surgery is expensive. That’s why we gave extra points to lenders that offer large loan amounts and flexible loan terms. Rest assured we made sure they allow borrowers to use their loan proceeds on medical expenses.
  • Interest rates and fees: High interest rates and fees like origination fees, late fees, and prepayment penalties can quickly increase the overall cost of your bariatric procedure. Our experts prioritized lenders with competitive rates as well as minimal to no fees.
  • Application process: It takes a lot of time and effort to get approved for and prepare for a bariatric surgery so a quick, seamless, online application process is ideal. We gave bonus points to lenders that offer prequalification tools you can use to compare offers without any impact to your credit score.
  • Qualification process: We believe that bad credit shouldn’t stop you from undergoing a life changing procedure but good credit should reward you with favorable rates and terms. Therefore, we looked at lenders with both lenient and stringent eligibility requirements.
  • Customer support: Since bariatric financing usually comes with longer terms and you’re sure to have questions or concerns while you repay your loan, excellent customer support via phone, email, online chat, and other channels is important.  
  • Online user reviews: Online reviews on independent review sites like Trustpilot and Better Business Bureau (BBB) gave us non-biased insight into each lender’s reputation and customer satisfaction ratings.
  • Perks and Bonuses: We looked at extras like hardship assistance, credit score monitoring, repayment flexibility, and unemployment protection as they can make a bariatric surgery loan more attractive.

Best Loans for Bariatric Surgery in 2022 - Full Overview

1. LightStream: Best for High Loan Amounts

If you find that your insurance company won’t cover a lot of your bariatric surgery, a LightStream personal loan may be the way to go. Its loans go up to $100,000, making them for high out-of-pocket costs.
Pros
High maximum amount: You may be able to borrow up to $100,000 for your bariatric surgery and any other procedures.
Low rates: If you have good credit, you can qualify for a low rate, which can save you a lot of money in the long run.
No fees: LightStream doesn’t charge any fees, including origination fees, late fees, and repayment fees.
Cons
No prequalification tool: You won’t be able to check your offers from LightStream unless you go through the formal application process.
High minimum loan amount: If you only have a few thousand dollars in out-of-pocket costs, you may find the minimum loan amount of $5,000 a bit too high.
Established credit history required: LightStream approves borrowers with at least a few years of credit under their belt.

lightstream
LightStream loans range from $5,000 to $100,000 with terms of 2 to 7 years and rates between 4.99% to 19.99%. The lender requires a minimum credit score of 660 and at least several years of credit with a good payment history.

The Bottom Line

If you have good credit and have to pay a lot out-of-pocket for your bariatric surgery and any other accompanying procedures, a LightStream personal loan is a solid pick.

2. LendingClub: Best for Small Loan Amounts

LendingClub personal loans start at $1,000 so you may want to go this route if your insurance company is paying for most of your bariatric procedure and your out-of-pocket costs are fairly low.
Pros
Small loan amounts: You may take out a small LendingClub personal loan of only $1,000.
Prequalification option: The LendingClub website features a prequalification tool so you can check your bariatric loan offer without any impact to your credit.
Payment flexibility: As long as you’re in good standing, you can change your payment due date, either temporarily or permanently.
Cons
Higher interest rates: Compared to other personal loan lenders, LendingClub interest rates are high.
Limited term lengths: There are only two terms you can choose from: three years and five years.
Origination fees: LendingClub charges origination fees that range from 3% and 6% of the total loan amount.

lending club
LendingClub personal loans range from $1,000 to $40,000 with terms of 3 or 5 years and interest rates from 6.34% to 35.89%. You’ll need a credit history of more than 18 months and a minimum credit score of 600 to get approved.

The Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a small loan for your bariatric surgery and don’t have the best credit, LendingClub can be a smart option.

3. OneMain Financial: Best for Bad Credit

A bad credit score shouldn’t stop you from improving your health with bariatric surgery. OneMain Financial may approve you for financing, even if you don’t have the best credit.
Pros
Bad credit accepted: OneMain Financial doesn’t require good credit and will consider other factors when reviewing your application for bariatric financing.
Flexible terms: You can get approved for a loan with flexible payment terms ranging from 2 to 5 years.
Seven-day cancellation policy: OneMain Financial allows you to cancel your bariatric surgery loan within 7 days if you decide it’s not right for you.
Cons
No autopay discount: Unlike many other lenders, OneMain Financial doesn’t offer a rate discount if you sign up for automatic payments.
Origination fees: You may be on the hook for an origination fee of 1% to 10% of the total loan amount or a flat fee of $25 to $500, depending on where you live.
High starting interest rate: Even if you have good credit, you may have to settle for a higher-than-average interest rate.

OneMain
OneMain Financial loans range from $1,500 to $20,000 with repayment terms of 2 to 5 years and interest rates between 18.00% to 35.99%. While the lender doesn’t reveal any hard credit requirements, it does state that it uses a proprietary underwriting system to review your credit information and focuses on your ability to repay your loan.

The Bottom Line

OneMain Financial is best if you don’t have the best credit yet want to lock in a loan for your weight loss surgery with flexible repayment terms.

4. Discover: Best for Good Credit

Discover personal loans come with low starting interest rates. If you have solid credit and can get approved for one, you’ll be able to reduce the overall cost of your bariatric surgery.
Pros
Attractive rates for good credit: If you have a high credit score, you may secure a competitive rate that can save you hundreds or even thousands on your bariatric surgery.
Next day funding: Depending on when you apply, you can collect the money the next business day.
Payment flexibility: You can change your payment due date to meet your new budget or circumstances.
Cons
No rate discount for autopay: Discover doesn't offer a rate discount if you sign up for automatic payments.
Low maximum loan amount: Discover personal loans cap out at $35,000.
Late fees: You’ll have to pay a $39 late fee if you miss any payments after a three-day grace period.

discover
Discover personal loans range from $2,500 to $35,000 with terms of 3 to 7 years and interest rates between 5.99% and 24.99%.The lender requires a strong credit score of at least 720 and minimum household income of $40,000.

The Bottom Line

If you have strong credit and want to minimize your interest fees, a Discover personal loan might be a great choice for your weight loss surgery.

5. Marcus: Best for No Fees

If you’d like to cover the cost of your bariatric procedure, without paying for fees on top of interest, Marcus by Goldman Sachs can help you out. Its loans come with no fees, including origination fees, late fees, and prepayment fees.
Pros
No fees: While you will have to pay interest, Marcus won’t charge you origination fees, late fees, and prepayment fees.
On-time payment reward: Once you make 12 or more consecutive payments on time, Marcus will allow you to defer one payment without charging you more in interest.
Flexible loan terms: Marcus offers a wide range of loan terms, ranging from three to six years.
Cons
High eligibility requirements: If you don’t have the best credit, you may not be able to take out a Marcus loan as the lender has rigorous requirements.
No cosigned options: Since Marcus doesn’t offer cosigner loans, you won’t be able to add a cosigner to increase your chances of approval.
Limited customer support options: While you can get in touch with customer support via phone, there is no way to get in touch with Marcus through live chat or social media.

marcus by goldman sachs
Marcus personal loan amounts range from $3,500 to $40,000 with 3 to 6 year terms. Interest rates, which are between 6.99% to 19.99% are quite competitive. To get approved, you’ll need a credit score of at least 660.

The Bottom Line

For a no-fee personal loan for your bariatric surgery, you may want to choose Marcus, especially if you have a strong credit score.

6. SoFi: Best for Member Benefits

If you’re looking for a bariatric surgery loan that offers extra perks for its borrowers, SoFi should be on your radar. The lender prides itself on member-only perks like interest rate discounts, career coaching, and events, like happy hours and dinners with other members.
Pros
Member-only perks: Upon approval, you can enjoy a variety of extra benefits that are exclusive to SoFi members.
Large loan amounts: SoFi will lend up to $100,000 to borrowers who qualify.
Unemployment protection: If you get laid off, you may be able to pause your payments and receive some support with your job search.
Cons
High eligibility requirements: While you can apply with a cosigner, SoFi will look for good credit and a strong monthly cash flow.
May have to wait for funding: It can take a few days to receive your funds.
High minimum loan amount: SoFi loans start at $5,000, which can be problematic if you only need a few hundred or thousand dollars to pay for your procedure.

sofi
SoFi personal loans range from $5,000 to $100,000 with repayment terms of 2 to 7 years and interest rates between 6.99% to 21.78%. You need a credit score of at least 680 and must be currently employed or have a job offer that starts within 90 days..

The Bottom Line

If you’re interested in bariatric financing that offers a variety of perks, a SoFi loan can be a smart option.

Try SoFi

7. Upgrade: Best for Flexible Terms

With an Upgrade personal loan, you can take anywhere from 2 to 7 years to repay your loan. It’s worth exploring, whether you want to pay off your bariatric surgery quickly or take your time.
Pros
Flexible terms: Upgrade’s terms range from 2 to 7 years.
Credit building tools: You can take advantage of several free tools that will help you build your credit.
Fast funding: Upon approval, you may receive your money within one business day.
Cons
Origination fees: Upgrade charges origination fees that range from 2.9% to 8%, which can increase the overall cost of your loan.
Late fees: In addition to origination fees, you may pay a late fee of up to $10 if you don't make a full payment within 15 days of the due date.
Not available everywhere: If you live in Iowa or West Virginia, an Upgrade loan isn’t an option as Upgrade doesn’t serve these states.

upgrade
Upgrade offers loans that range from $1,000 to $50,000 with terms of 2 to 7 years and interest rates of 5.44% to 35.47%. The minimum credit score requirement is 560 and you need at least two accounts on your credit history as well as a debt-to-income ratio of no more than 75%.

The Bottom Line

If repayment flexibility is important to you, an Upgrade personal loan for your bariatric surgery may make sense.

8. Avant: Best for Fast Funding

Avant offers fast funding for bariatric surgery financing. This is great news if you can’t wait long for your procedure and you need to cover some or all of its costs right away.
Pros
Fast funding: You can collect your funds via direct deposit the day after Avant approves you for a loan.
Lenient requirements: Avant might approve you for a bariatric surgery loan, even if you have bad credit.
Payment date flexibility: If you’d like you’ll be able change your payment due date up to two times during your repayment term.
Cons
Origination fees: Avant may charge an origination fee up to 4.75%.
High APRs: If you don’t have great credit, you may have to accept a high interest rate, which can increase the cost of your weight loss procedure.
Limited availability: Avant doesn’t lend to borrowers in Colorado, Hawaii, Iowa, Nevada, New York, Vermont and West Virginia.

avant
Avant’s loans range from $2,000 to $35,000 with terms of 2 to 5 years. Its interest rates cap at 35.95%. For a chance of approval, you need a minimum credit score of 550, a monthly income of at least $1,200 and debt-to-income ratio of no more than 70%.

The Bottom Line

An Avant personal loan may help you out if you need funds to pay for your bariatric surgery as soon as possible.

Try Avant

Best Bariatric Surgery Loans - Feature Comparison

Company Name

Est. APR

Min. credit score

Loan Amount

Loan term

LightStream

4.99-19.99%

660

$5,000-$100,000

2-7 years

LendingClub

6.34-35.89%

600

$1,000-$40,000

3 or 5 years

OneMain Financial 

18.00-35.99%

None

$1,500-$20,000

2-5 years

Discover

5.99-24.99%

720

$2,500-$35,000

3-7 years

Marcus

6.99-19.99%

660

$3,500-$40,000

3-6 years

SoFi

6.99%–21.78%

680

$5,000–$100,000

2-7 years

Upgrade

5.44-35.47%

560

$1,000-$50,000

2-7 years

Avant

9.95-35.95%

550

$2,000-$35,000

2-5 years

Why Should I Finance Bariatric Surgery? 

Not only can bariatric surgery help you lose weight, it may reduce your risk of a variety of health problems related to obesity, such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, unhealthy cholesterol, joint pain, and urinary incontinence.

Therefore, it’s important to move forward with the procedure if your doctor recommends it, even if you have to finance it. A bariatric surgery loan may be essential if you’d like to improve your mood, move around easily, reduce the need for prescription medications, and even extend your lifespan.

How Much Does Bariatric Surgery Cost?

Bariatric surgery is expensive and usually costs between $15,000 and $25,000. There are a number of factors that will determine what you’ll pay for it, including where you live, your health insurance plan, your payment method, your surgeon’s fee, and the hospital you choose.

Anesthesiologist fees, surgical assistant fees, device fees, and follow-up procedures may play a role in the cost as well. Before you commit to bariatric surgery, be sure to meet with an office or insurance coordinator at the hospital or practice where you’ll be receiving it. They can help you understand your insurance coverage and potential out-of-pocket costs.

Does Health Insurance Cover Bariatric Surgery?

If you have a health insurance plan, read your policy carefully and collaborate with your insurance company and doctor to find out what’s covered. To cover the cost of bariatric surgery, most insurance providers will require proof that it’s a medical necessity. They will ask your surgeon to share your medical history and provide any documentation that shows your weight loss has led to health problems.

You may also need to complete a 6-month weight loss program before your insurer grants coverage for bariatric surgery. This program typically involves monthly visits to your doctor or surgeon’s office for a 6-month period. During this time, insurance companies hope your weight is stable and you can demonstrate your commitment to a healthy lifestyle, which will be important after the surgery.

In addition, you might have to go through a psychological evaluation that allows you to understand the procedure and how it will impact your lifestyle. The evaluation may also look for binge eating and other psychological issues that may exist. Lastly, your insurance company will require that you work with a nutritionist to pinpoint any dietary habits that must be changed.

Keep in mind that even if your insurance company does cover your bariatric surgery, there’s a good chance you’ll still have to pay your deductible as well as other out-of-pocket costs that warrant financing.

Qualifications for Bariatric Surgery

According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (AMBS), you must meet these requirements to be eligible for bariatric surgery:

  • Be between 14 and 75 years of age.
  • Have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher, or a BMI between 35 and 40 and a condition related to obesity, such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure or severe sleep apnea.
  • Show an inability to achieve a healthy weight loss through diet plans, behavioral changes, and medical therapy.
  • Have plans to make healthy lifestyle changes following the procedure, which include  diet, vitamins, an exercise program and follow-up visits with a nutritionist, an exercise physiologist, and a mental health professional.
  • Prove you have realistic expectations and understand the procedure and its risk factors.

Bariatric Surgery Financing Options?

There are a number of ways to finance your bariatric surgery, including:

  • Medical Loan: A medical loan is an unsecured personal loan you can use for any medical expense, including bariatric surgery. You can get one through a bank, credit union, or online lender. Most medical loans come with fixed rates and repayment terms so you can budget for your payments in advance. While they often require good to excellent credit, there are lenders that are willing to approve borrowers with bad credit.
  • In-House Financing: Some healthcare providers offer in-house loans via third-party organizations. CareCredit is the most common example and allows you to make monthly payments until you’ve repaid your out-of-pocket costs for your bariatric procedure. You won’t pay any interest if you pay off your balance in full within six, 12, 18, or 24 months. Depending on your credit and borrowing amount, this option may be easier to access and more affordable than alternatives.
  • Secured Personal Loan: With a secured personal loan, you must tie your loan to collateral, which can include your personal property like a car or the funds in your savings account or certificate of deposit. Since the collateral lowers the lender’s risk, secured personal loans are easier to qualify for and often offer lower interest rates than unsecured personal loans. Keep in mind that the value of your collateral can impact how much you can borrow.
  • Credit Card: If you have fair credit, it may be cost-effective to finance your bariatric procedure with a credit card. However, if you have excellent credit, a credit card will likely cost you more than a personal loan. But may get approved for a card with a promotional 0% APR, which can allow you to repay your balance interest-free before the promotional period ends. The caveat is that the promotional period will likely only be around 12 to 18 months and if you fail to pay off what you borrowed, you may be stuck with a sky-high interest rate.

Can You Get Financing for Other Weight Loss Surgeries?

You can use an unsecured personal loan for any type of weight loss procedure, including gastric sleeve, adjustable gastric band placement, and duodenal switch. You may also take out a personal loan to pay for plastic surgery related to bariatric weight loss. Here’s a brief overview of the most common types of weight loss surgeries.

Gastric Sleeve

Also known as a vertical sleeve gastrectomy, gastric sleeve surgery is when the surgeon cuts out about 80% of the patient’s stomach. Their goal is to turn it into a long pouch instead of a round organ to reduce how much they can eat, allowing them to feel fuller, faster.

Gastric Band

Gastric band surgery is considered the least invasive type of weight loss surgery. During this procedure, the surgeon places an inflatable band around the top of the patient’s stomach. It’s designed to make them feel fuller after eating a small amount of food.

Duodenal Switch

While duodenal switch surgery tends to be more complicated and riskier, it allows for maximum weight loss. It starts off like a gastric sleeve procedure and includes attaching the small stomach to the lower section of the small intestine and accessing the bypassed section. This allows for the inclusion of digestive juices.

Achieve a Healthy, Happy Lifestyle with Bariatric Surgery Financing

Your health should be your top priority. Therefore, if your doctor recommends bariatric surgery, don’t let finances get in the way. With the right loan for your weight loss procedure, you can pursue it with confidence. Bariatric surgery financing may be the key to a long, healthy, and fulfilling life.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can You Finance Bariatric Surgery?

There are many ways to finance bariatric surgery. You can take out a medical loan, secured personal loan, or credit card. Another option is in-house financing through a third-party provider like CareCredit. Before you commit to a loan, explore the rates, terms, and fees of all your options.

How cost effective is bariatric surgery?

Even though bariatric surgery is expensive, the cost savings that come with it are significant. It can reduce the long-term healthcare expenses that come with paying for obesity-related conditions, such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, stroke, and heart attack.

Who specifically can benefit from bariatric surgery?

You may be a good candidate for bariatric surgery if you have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher or your BMI is between 35 and 39.9 but you have a serious health issue related to weight, like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, or severe sleep apnea. If you believe you’d benefit from this procedure, consult your doctor.

What are the advantages of gastric bypass?

Compared to other weight loss surgeries, gastric bypass offers a number of benefits. It can help your body direct to healthier food choices. You’ll eat less, reduce hunger, and increase your feelings of fullness. The procedure may also resolve or reverse most of the health problems related to obesity.

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