Cosmetic surgery is becoming increasingly common in New Zealand, but that doesn’t mean these procedures are covered by your healthcare provider. If you are looking at having a procedure but don’t have the funds available, you may want to consider a cosmetic surgery loan.
Loan terms. You should try and determine a realistic length of time that you need to pay back the loan in full, then check these terms are offered by the lender. The length of the loan may affect the amount of interest you pay over its life and the cost of repayments.
Loan amount. Before signing for the loan, you should check you can borrow the full amount you want. Some lenders have set minimum and maximum amounts, while the amount you are approved for is also dependent on your credit history.
Repayment options. Most personal loans have the option of weekly, fortnightly or monthly repayments that you can align with your budget, but some lenders are more restrictive. See if you can make additional repayments, without incurring fees, as this option can help save money on interest.
Interest rate. Interest rates can vary from lender to lender, and are often advertised as a range. The interest rate that you receive depends on factors such as your credit history, current financial situation and the loan amount.
Fees. Most lenders charge an establishment fee for new loans, plus there could be ongoing costs to consider such as monthly account fees.
Restrictions. Depending on the lender, there may be certain restrictions placed on the loan. For example, you may not be able to make additional repayments or pay back the loan early. Make sure you are familiar with all aspects of the loan before you apply.
How much does cosmetic surgery cost?
There are some cosmetic issues facing New Zealanders that can be resolved with general, cosmetic surgery. Cosmetic enhancements include brow lift surgery, fixing prominent (bat) ears or breast surgery. The cost of these cosmetic surgeries start at approximately $2,000 and may require one or two weeks leave from work, depending on the type of surgery and its extent.
Hair transplant surgery is fairly new in New Zealand but people, especially men, may want surgery to replace lost hair. This involves removing hair-bearing skin from the back of the scalp and transplanting it to the front. Afterwards, the patient may feel pain or throbbing in the area, making it necessary to take time off work until fully recovered. How much the procedure costs can vary vastly, depending on the extent of hair loss, but may range from $1,700 to $30,000 if hair loss is severe.
Bariatric surgery is a weight-loss method to help a patient control their appetite. This is done using a variety of methods including having a band placed around the upper portion of the stomach and can cost as much as $23,500. Many of these procedures are now done via a laparoscope, making recovery time around 2 to 3 weeks.
Dental surgery requires the removal of teeth and/or the reconstruction of the jaw bone to position them better. Dental implants can cost $5,000 or more for a single tooth. Although modern procedures have improved dental implant procedures, you may be in pain for a few days following the procedure, so be prepared to take a few days off work.
Cosmetic dentistry is used by Kiwis to repair what they consider to be an issue with their mouth or teeth. Teeth whitening is a common procedure that costs up to $500 a visit. Veneers, which are placed over the teeth to improve their appearance, can cost anywhere from $250 per tooth for composite veneers to $1,000 per tooth for porcelain veneers.
Laser eye surgery, or Lasik, is used to correct a person’s vision, so they don’t need to use glasses or contact lenses. A laser is used to restore vision to an ideal 20/20. This treatment can cost approximately $6,000 for both eyes, and as it is completed as an outpatient procedure, you will need someone to take you home afterwards. People whose eyesight is very poor tend to notice more of an immediate improvement in their eyesight following laser surgery. Patients with lower prescription glasses can take up to 8 hours to notice any improvement.
An ENT specialist carries out surgery on the ears, nose and throat. One of the most common procedures related to ENT surgery is a rhinoplasty, which is a reshaping of the nose. This cosmetic procedure can cost up to $16,000, and you will need at least 10 to 14 days to recover before being able to return to work.
How to apply for cosmetic surgery loans
To apply for a personal loan to finance a cosmetic procedure, compare your options in the table above and click through to your chosen lender’s website to fill out an online application form. Eligibility requirements differ between lenders, but generally, you need to be over the age of 18, a permanent New Zealand citizen or resident and have a good credit rating. You also need to provide the following details when you apply:
Personal details, including name, age and proof of your identification
Financial details, including assets, debt and liabilities
Your income and pay frequency, which may require proof, using your payslips or tax returns
Your employer’s name and contact information
Can I take out a loan for cosmetic surgery overseas?
To save money, some Kiwis opt to go overseas to countries such as Thailand, where cosmetic surgery is more affordable. These are known as ‘plastic surgery holidays’, and though you may save yourself some money, you could expose yourself to serious risk.
New Zealand’s medical services rank among the best in the world, while conditions in other countries may not be as safe or hygienic. Make sure you consult a professional before booking your surgery abroad, so you know all the risk and complications that may occur.
Another point to consider is that your travel insurance may not cover you if you are travelling for the purpose of cosmetic surgery. Speak to your insurer before booking to check, otherwise you may be left with expensive bills should anything go wrong on your trip.
Matt Corke is Finder's head of publishing for rest of world and New Zealand. He previously worked as the publisher for credit cards, home loans, personal loans and credit scores. Matt built his first website in 1999 and has been building computers since he was in his early teens. In that time, he has survived the dot-com crash and countless Google algorithm updates.
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