Finding a Cash Pay Rehab

If you don’t have insurance or don’t qualify for state assistance, how do you pay for treatment at a private drug rehab center? You may think that treatment at a private addiction treatment center is out of the question for you. That’s not necessarily the case, but you will have to put some effort into researching what type of payment plans a private drug rehab center has to offer.

The options may surprise you. Many private rehab centers offer sliding-scale payments, financing, and even grants and scholarships. One method to pay for a private drug rehab center that is becoming popular is crowd-funding. And of course, you can always turn to family. You may feel reluctant to ask the people your addiction has hurt to help you get better. But you’ll likely be surprised at how willing family members are to step in and help. Remember, your family wants to see you get better because they love you.

Call our experts today at (912) 214-3867 to learn more about your financial options for treatment.


Read below to discover more about how you can pay for addiction treatment even without insurance.

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The cost of rehab

How much does rehab cost? According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the inability to afford rehab is the No. 1 reason why addicts who need and want help don’t receive it. Generally, the price tag for private drug rehab centers is:

  • Outpatient: $3,000 – $10,000 for 90 days
  • Inpatient: $5,000 – $20,000 for 30 days
  • Luxury: $30,000 – $100,000 for 30 days

Actual costs depend on a patient’s individual needs. Inpatient treatment is more costly, but better for those with severe addictions. Outpatient treatment allows patients to live at home and come into the rehab center for a few hours most days of the week. 

For inpatient rehab, program lengths usually start at 30 days, then go up to 60, 90, and 180 days. The longer you stay in treatment, the greater the cost. However, it is also true that the longer you can afford to spend in rehab, the better your chance for a successful outcome. The National Institute on Drug Abuse suggests that most individuals need 90 days to stop or significantly reduce drug use. 

Users recovering from alcohol and opiate addictions may require medication to safely and comfortably detox. Here are some common medications and their associated costs:

  • Methadone — commonly used to treat withdrawal symptoms for opiates and aid in detox. The typical cost for a year-long treatment is about $2,600 to $5,200 depending on the dosage.
  • Buprenorphine — also called Subutex, this treatment is similar to methadone. Taking this medication every day for a year costs between $4,000 and $5,000 depending on the dose.

At an inpatient private drug rehab center, additional “comfort” features can add to the cost. Basic inpatient rehab centers may cost $5,000 a month. Meanwhile, a luxury facility in Malibu could cost up to $100,000 a month.

Cost tends to be higher in a large city that has a high cost of living. A facility in a smaller city or rural area may slightly lower the cost. If you have to travel to an outpatient center that’s far away, your transportation costs could also add up.

Sliding-Scale Payments

A growing number of rehab centers are offering a sliding scale for payments if insurance or other funding options are not available.

Treatment centers are willing to work with you based on how much you can realistically pay for services. This sliding scale is designed to encourage those with a lower income or who don’t have much left over after paying their bills to still get help.

The centers subsidize their sliding scales by charging wealthier patients more. They can also get tax breaks by providing services much like a charity does. In addition, the treatment center may receive government funding to allow them to accept lower payments. Some centers even provide a way for “alumni” to donate money to help with costs.

But just because you’re on the lower end of the sliding scale doesn’t mean you’re receiving inferior treatment. The treatment centers will make sure you are getting all the resources you need to start your life of recovery.

Sliding-scale fees are available at residential and inpatient centers that offer both long and short-term treatment programs. These particular centers understand the financial challenges of patients who need to get better but lack the funds to pay the full and hefty price of drug treatment programs.

Our professionals can offer further advice on finding a private addiction treatment center that charges on a sliding scale.

Financing Your Stay

Financing is a good option for people who need immediate treatment but are struggling to keep their jobs and can’t save money. Financing allows you to pay the full amount of treatment to the private drug rehab center upfront. You then make payments to a lender over a certain period.

Some of the most popular forms of financing are personal loans, home equity loans, or credit card loans. If you have a 401k, you can borrow money from that account and pay it back. But you will face a federal tax penalty of about 10 percent.

You may also want to consider borrowing from financial institutions such as Prosper Healthcare Lending and My Treatment Lender. They work with people looking for drug rehab financing.

The best credit cards to use for treatment are ones that specialize in health-care costs. They almost always have lower interest rates than regular credit cards.

You can also set up a payment plan with the rehab center. This may require you to make a down payment, but afterward, you can pay the center a monthly fee worked out between you and them.

Often, you won’t have to make your first payment until after you are out of treatment. Even better, some of these plans will give you a six-month grace period so you can find a job before having to make your first payment.

The two most important things are to get the help you need and not end up in a worse financial situation.

Scholarships and Grants

Yes, there are such things as scholarships and grants for those who need drug and alcohol rehab but don’t have insurance. SAMHSA provides grants through the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention and the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment.

The grants are non-competitive grants that can help fund your alcohol or drug addiction treatment if you don’t have insurance or are under-insured. You can see the application requirements on SAMHSA’s website and find out if you qualify for a grant.

Our professionals can put you in touch with a private addiction treatment center in your area to see if it has any scholarships or grants to offer. Many of these scholarships and grants are funded by local companies, nonprofit organizations, and even “alumni” — people who successfully completed treatment at the facility.

Regardless of whether you opt for a local scholarship or grant, or try for a national grant, each one will have its own restrictions and requirements. The applications for some grants also may be more complex than those for others.

First, you’ll have to fill out an application to see if you meet the scholarship’s or grant’s criteria. If you do, the selection process begins. This may include initial screening, a review process, and an interview.

If you receive a scholarship or a grant, the evaluation process isn’t over. Usually, you will not receive funding until after you have successfully completed treatment.

The first few weeks and months of recovery are the toughest. As a result, the organization that provided you with the scholarship or grant may also ask you to promise up to a year’s involvement in their support and outreach efforts.

Raise Your Own Money

This may not be an option for everyone, but there are ways you can raise the money you need for treatment on your own. No insurance? Bad credit? You might want to try social media.

Using a platform such as GoFundMe or Indiegogo, you can ask for donations from the community to help pay for rehab. If you have no other alternatives — and you don’t mind telling your story to strangers — this may be a good alternative for you. Who knows, you may inspire a stranger out in the internet ether to seek help for his substance use disorder.

If you don’t feel right simply asking for money, offer donors some of your services. Depending on the platform, you can say that X amount of dollars will get a donor X amount of hours of handyman work, home cleaning, music lessons, graphic design work — whatever you’re good at.

If this route is not for you, it’s time to start selling personal items. This is where you separate your stuff between must-have and nice to have. Collectibles should go first.

Selling those vintage baseball cards, record albums, comics, even family treasures, may be difficult. But it’s better to sell them to pay for treatment rather than more drugs.

In fact, you may not have to sell them at all. Perhaps trusted friends, family and associates will take your treasures as collateral for a loan. But make it official. Put it in writing that you will be considered in default if you fail to complete treatment.

Turning to Family

For many people with a substance use disorder, asking family for financial help to go to a private drug rehab center may seem unthinkable. These are the people you likely hurt and alienated the most. Yet they are the same people who will also rally behind you when you finally ask for help.

If your family stages an intervention for you, chances are they already are thinking about the costs. If you agree that you need help, the money will be there for you.

Now, the money may be offered as a gift, but it’s up to you to decide whether you feel more comfortable taking it as a gift or as a loan. You don’t have to make that decision right away.

If you choose a gift, be gracious and grateful. If you choose a loan, let them know that it’s a way to motivate yourself through treatment and to thank them for caring.

Some members of your family may not have much money to give, but they may offer to help you with finding a private addiction treatment center and join you on visits. They may gather information on available scholarships and grants, help you fill out applications, or coach you through interviews. That kind of help can be just as valuable as any financial support.

There may be a few recalcitrant or passive-aggressive family members who won’t have your back. Don’t beat yourself up over them. Families are made up of people and not all people are great. Focus instead on your recovery, rebuilding relationships with close family members, and getting to know those family members you didn’t even know were rooting for you.

To learn more about ways to pay for rehab, call our experts today at (912) 214-3867.


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Preparing a Loved One for Addiction Treatmentthe buddhist approach to addiction rests on their spirituality and attempt to be the best version of themselves possible