The Official SoundScape Weblog

The Official SoundScape Weblog

Ears to Hear

Seven Buyer "Bewares" When Purchasing Hearing Aids

I found this posting on the internet at expertclick.com – it’s some very good advice, so I thought I’d pass it along.

 

Here’s the link: http://www.expertclick.com/NRWire/Releasedetails.aspx?id=19106

 

Now, let me comment on and tell you a little bit about SoundScape in relation to these seven “bewares”.

 

1. Are you really getting a “Free Hearing Test”?

 

Our free consultation includes a case history, discussion of patient concerns, otoscopic exam, pure tone audiometry, middle ear assessment by bone oscillator, speech discrimination assessment, speech audiometry, speech in noise assessment, a copy of your test and a thorough discussion of budget and cost.

 

2. “Is 'the retailer' a ‘One Brand Only’ provider?”

 

We have accounts with all the major hearing aid manufacturers (Siemens, Phonak, Unitron, Oticon, Bernafon, Sonic Innovations, Rexton, Panasonic, Starkey, and Widex). In this way we can always fit what’s best for each customer. And, we can service and program the current hearing aids of those customers who do not need new hearing aids, just maintenance.

 

Furthermore, we do not sell hearing aids with proprietary software which forces our customers to come to us for adjustments; instead we work to keep our customers happy by providing a great experience.

 

3. “Does the company have an established, permanent, full-time office?”

 

Yes we do. We specialize in in-home mobile service because we feel it’s the best way to serve our customers, even those without mobility issues. It helps us get a better idea of our customer’s needs, enables us to help with set up of accessories, and enables us to fit the hearing aids in an environment where they are actually going to be used.

 

4. “Is the provider an accredited, licensed professional?”

 

Yes. I, Nathan Willard, am SoundScape’s owner and operator. I am a licensed Hearing Aid Specialist in the state of Oregon.

 

5. “Read the fine print on advertisements.”

 

There is no fine print on our advertisements other than copyright information, because we strive to be straightforward and honest in everything we do.

 

6. “Beware of ‘Low Price’ leader ads.”

 

There is too much deception in hearing aid advertising and we are doing our part to fight against such practices.

 

We do not practice bait and switch tactics. We don’t advertise low quality hearing aids we have no intention of selling, and we gladly sell everything we advertise.

 

We also give everyone the best deal we can at the time; we don’t haggle.

 

7. “What about the Internet?”

 

You can get some great deals on the internet. Yet, I recently helped adjust a man’s hearing aids that he bought on the internet. My regular price for the exact same brand and model hearing aids he bought over the internet, from a company that was not able to give him the service he needed, was less than what he paid.

 

Here’s another thing to consider. In Oregon, and elsewhere, it is illegal to sell hearing aids if you cannot provide a face-to-face fitting of those aids. Every manufacturer I know of forbids the practice of selling hearing aids without a face to face fitting. This means that any online hearing aid retailer who does not contract with a local provider to deliver their hearing aids is breaking the law and violating their contract with the manufacturer. These people may save a person money, but do they really sound like they are a reputable business that you can trust?

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