Therapists and counselors in private practice find all kinds of creative ways to keep clients coming back. Some therapists offer clients package pricing, which they might also call a prepayment discount. For example, a therapist who charges $100 per session might offer five sessions for $450 if the client agrees to pay up front. Under either name, the therapist agrees to a price cut in exchange for a commitment to a certain number of sessions.
At first glance, everyone wins with such an arrangement. The therapist has cash in hand, the client saves money, and the client’s commitment to therapy may reduce dropouts and missed sessions. But such arrangements carry meaningful risks for therapists. These discounts can wind up costing therapists much more than they are worth.