5 Ways to Lower Your Health Insurance Premiums
Although millions of Americans go without healthcare for years at a time, it’s obviously not the ideal scenario. If you’re reasonably young and healthy you might not see the need to spend so much money, but anyone who has ever been in a severe and unexpected accident or developed a chronic illness knows that insurance may be the only thing standing between you and bankruptcy. The federal government has degreed that everyone must pay for health insurance or face financial penalties starting next year, so now is the time to consider how to afford this important insurance policy. But just because you must carry it doesn’t mean you have to overspend. Here are five ways to lower your health insurance premiums.
The easiest way to cut these monthly costs is to raise the deductible on claims listed in your policy. Just as with other forms of insurance, a deductible is in place for any covered situations. Basically, any treatments you must get that cost less than your deductible must come out of pocket. Once you hit your deductible mark in a given year, the insurance provider steps in to pay. So the higher the deductible, the more you are responsible for. It’s a tricky balance, as you don’t want a deductible that’s so high it becomes impossible to afford. But raising your deductible will always lower your premiums.
If there’s any possibility, you should look for opportunities to join some sort of professional association. There may be options based on your career, the region in which you live and work or where you went to college. But most national professional organizations offer insurance to their members at a group rate. As one of a much larger community you will receive this discount and immediately lower what you are paying individually on health insurance.
Many employers offer health insurance, but depending on a number of factors you could have a lower premium by purchasing an individual policy. This will only save you money if you have to pay in to your corporate medical insurance. But if you are young, a non-smoker and healthy, you can often find a personal policy that’s far less expensive than a corporate plan. You’ll be able to choose the specifics yourself, so you can drop expensive add-ons like prescription plans or dental coverage.
Look into the other specifics of your policy for ways to save. For example, you can choose a prescription plan that provides you coverage for generic medications instead of the name brands. These generics have almost the exact same effects as their major pharmaceutical counterparts, but at a fraction of the cost. You can also make adjustments to the level of your co-pay, or you can remove the out of network option completely. Any of these adjustments will lower your rates.
Finally, look to your own lifestyle to realize some savings. If you make some moves to improve your health you can often turn that into insurance savings. Whether you purchased yourhealth insurance in Florida, California, New York or basically anywhere you’ll find options that reward you if you join a gym or take part in a corporate wellness program. The health insurance provider saves money if you stay well, so your actions could lead to deep discounts if you make a concerted effort.