4 tips to Avoid Paying Too Much for your Hearing Aids
Once you’ve made the decision that you need hearing aids, the next hurdle is the price. Most people want to avoid paying too much for hearing aids. The price of hearing aids can range from $1,000 for a of basic hearing device to $6,500 for top of the range technology.
What the hearing aid manufacturers say
There’s no doubt a huge amount of research and development goes into making a digital hearing aid. Today’s hearing aids are like small computers. They automatically adjust to the surrounding sounds, to give you the most comfortable hearing experience possible.
The hearing aid companies spend millions of dollars employing engineers and hearing specialists to test their hearing aids to make sure they do what they’re supposed to. They also enlist hundreds of people to ‘field-test’ new hearing aids.
Incentives can drive up the price
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) recently looked into hearing industry practices. They found that many hearing aid manufacturers offer sales incentives and commissions to encourage hearing clinicians to fit their brand. Some hearing clinics are even owned by these large manufacturers, so they tend to only recommend their own brand.
These incentives might also tempt some hearing clinicians to sell more expensive hearing devices – ones that offer more features than the consumer needs.
Ultimately, these costs have to be built into the hearing aid price.
Our tips to avoid paying too much for your hearing aids
Do your research
The ACCC suggests that smart hearing aid consumers do their research first. Before you make an appointment with a hearing care provider, ask friends or family members about their experiences.
Check out the manufacturer’s websites to find out about the features and benefits of each hearing aid. Check that they match your lifestyle. Admittedly, this can be a bit daunting, but it will give you a good idea of the products that might suit you.
1. Choose your hearing care provider
When choosing your hearing clinician, ask them whether they receive commissions or any other incentives from manufacturers.
Smart Hearing Solutions have the freedom to choose the best hearing solutions from the full range of leading brands. And as a small, local hearing care provider, it’s in our interest to maintain a good reputation in the community. We want to do what’s best for you.
2. Ask the right questions
Your hearing clinician should take the time to discuss all aspects of your lifestyle and health. This can influence the choice of hearing aids. For example, if you’re a person who likes to socialise and spend time with family and friends, it’s important you have a hearing aid that distinguishes speech from background noise.
Talk to your hearing care clinician to make sure the hearing aids on offer are right for you – and you’re not paying for features you don’t need.
3. Get some help to pay for your hearing aids
There are a couple of ways you can get financial help with your hearing aids. For eligible pensioners and veterans, free and subsidised hearing are the answer. Most hearing care providers are accredited by the Australian government to provide these services, but it’s worth asking them about it when you make your appointment.
For private clients (people who aren’t eligible for government support), your private health fund may provide some support. You’ll need to check with your provider. Unfortunately, Medicare does not subsidise hearing aids.
4. Are they worth it?
When you buy hearing aids, your payment should cover all the follow-up appointments and support your need. This isn’t the case with many hearing aids that are sold online. The downside of buying your hearing aids this way is that you’ll have to find someone experienced to fit the particular hearing aids you’ve purchased and who can also provide the appropriate support.
There’s no doubt, hearing aids can be a big investment.
But they’re something that you’ll use every day of your life. There’s also research that clearer hearing helps you avoid health problems like depression and dementia.
In the end, it’s hard to measure the sheer joy of being able to hear your loved ones when they speak to you.