Health Insurance is one of the largest cos
ts of living to date. This is due to a number of reasons and getting it under control has been a top priority during several presidential administrations, yet nothing seems to be improving. Though President Obama recently enacted a new health care bill, it's getting a lot of blow back on both sides of the aisle. Many states are fighting the bill and, while progress seems to be at a standstill, many Americans are left looking for different ways they can curtail some of the costs while still providing quality health insurance for both themselves and their loved ones.
High Deductible Policies
Though no one wants to do this, sometimes getting a policy with high deductibles is the best way to save money. If you're a relatively healthy person and you don't require constant medical attention, going this route could be the best way to go. This, of course, requires a much higher out-of-pocket expense, but you could end up saving far more than having a massive insurance bill every month that you're not really using. Taking out a high deductable policy will significantly lower your monthly payments and it's far better than not having a policy at all. It could be worth it to take
the money your saving and place it in a High Interest Savings Account.
Closing The Gaps
Often times people aren't fully aware of how ineffectual their insurance policy really is. Many private insurance companies will provide basic coverage but when it comes time to pay the bill, you're stuck with many services that your policy simply doesn't cover. This is common among Medicare plans but,
instead of buying into an overly expensive policy, some have opted to buy into Medicare supplement plans. They're also called Medigap policies because they're designed to pick up all of the ancillary costs that your standing policy won't. In essence, you're closing the gaps in coverage and will cover things like co pays, deductibles, and other various expenses. It may not seem worthwhile but you could end up saving a lot. Little costs can add up to big expenses so this might be a good option if you're finding that you are without adequate coverage.
Potential Tax Advantages
If you want to
lower your costs, it might require less work that you initially thought. Instead of haggling with your insurance provider, instead see if you can combine your high deductible insurance policy with a Health Savings Account. Many people aren't aware that doing this can instantly save you money on your taxes. Any contributions you make to a health savings account is tax free and this money can then be used for a large number of you medical costs such as: co-pays, deductibles, dental care, and vision services. Additional tax deductions and advantages may be available. This is all depending on your individual financial situation. In order to find out more you should contact an accountant or tax consultant. They can take you through the necessary steps.
There are others ways in which you can cut down on insurance costs by exploring group coverage and speaking with your provider. As is often the case, one of the biggest reasons an individual pays more is because they don't want to deal with the hassle of switching insurance providers. It's a big headache but it's important to compare the costs of other policies that may have better coverage and lower deductibles. Look at your present policy and speak with the competition and see if they can work with you but always, always, always read the fine print.
Lately, during Finance Friday the discussion has turned ...