(2 minute read)
Medicare often settles the question for seniors of whether to buy or rent medical equipment. The insurer does cover equipment like scooters, stair lifts, wheelchairs, hospital beds, and more. Sometimes the program will only pay for equipment to be rented, other times to be purchased. But when individuals are faced with the need to acquire their own durable medical equipment, the question of renting vs buying medical equipment is influenced by some of the factors below.
How Long is Medical Equipment Needed?
The first factor influencing a rent vs buy decision about medical equipment is how long it is needed. As chronic conditions become more common, it’s more likely these devices are needed long-term. But if you only temporarily need a motorized scooter to use a few months while recovering from surgery, renting is potentially wiser than buying. At the same time, you may decide to buy based on the answer to our second question.
Can You Resell or Donate the Equipment?
Another factor to consider between renting durable medical equipment or buying durable medical equipment is if your purchase could be resold later. If you can get a return on the value of the purchase, you may end up using the equipment for free yourself after you sell it. There’s also the option of donating the equipment for a tax deduction.
Is Equipment Staying in One Place?
Bigger medical equipment like a stair lift, tub lift, or hospital bed is usually only sensible to purchase when you know you will be staying in one place. If you’ll be moving between a few houses throughout the year or have other plans to travel, renting the equipment at each location will spare you the hassle of moving it and the potential for needed repairs.
Is the Durable Medical Equipment Hard to Maintain?
Lastly, consider the expense of maintaining and repairing durable medical equipment. This includes the expense of lost time or quality of life. If a scooter or stair lift you rely on to leave the house ends up breaking, the luxury of renting the machinery is, you have someone on-call who is under contract to help.
Whether renting or buying the equipment, the National Bureau of Economic Research found that 20% of an elderly person’s medical expenses are paid out of pocket, on average. Once people get over the age of 70, that number can double or more. Individuals looking to purchase the medical equipment that maintains their active quality of life may be looking for options to liquidate assets.
Did you know you can sell all or a portion of a life insurance policy, even term insurance? Selling an unwanted life insurance policy is no different than selling your car, home or any other valuable asset that will create immediate cash. Contact us today to learn more.
Life Settlement Advisors