By Keith Bunn Jr.
July 2, 2012
History was made
As we all know by now, on June 28th, the Federal Supreme Court Justices declared that Obamacare is constitutionally sound as a tax. This will mean a lot of different things to a bunch of different people. I will not get into the meat and potatoes of whether or not this healthcare plan is a good idea for our country, because to tell you the truth, this topic confuses the snot out of me. With hearing all the pros and cons from a bunch of different people and sources, I’m just not sure what’s what.
Even though I’m not sure about Obamacare, I do know that having a good healthcare plan is accentual as being part of a healthy financial plan.
What you can do
I don’t know about you, I’m not will to leave my families future in the hands of a government that can’t even make up their minds on the simple choices for this country. So what I ask myself is, “What can we do to improve our lives and/or future?” So when it comes to getting affordable healthcare, this is what I’ve come up with.
1. Increase your deductibles and/or your co-pay amounts. Most people today have an 80/20 insurance plan, which means if you need to use the insurance, your insurance company pays 80% of the bill and you pay 20%. Well if you were to increase your deductible and went to a 70/30 plan, you assume more responsibility and a greater risk than before and that will cause your premiums to go down.
2. Increase your Stop-Loss without decreasing your Maximum Pay. Stop-Loss is the maximum amount of out of pocket cost you’ll have to pay. Let’s say that you had a $10,000 Stop-Loss, you would pay your deductible, plus your 20% (if you had an 80/20 plan) up to $10,000. Everything above that, your insurance company would pay 100%. If you had a good 3 to 6 months saved in your emergency fund, you would be able to afford a $15,000 to $20,000 Stop Loss. Maximum Pay is the total amount your insurance company will pay. If you have a half a million dollar Max Pay and the total cost is above that, whatever the remainder is, you’re on your own. I would keep your Maximum Pay to be a minimum of $1 million.
3. Another way to keep your family’s healthcare down is by using a Health Savings Account (HAS). An HSA is a tax-sheltered account with a high deductible. A typical HSA account has around a $5,000 deductible but has lower premiums than your typical PPO insurance plans. One of the good things about an HSA is that after you have reached your deductible, the insurance company pays 100% of the medical cost. So an HSA makes sense if you and your family fall into two different categories. They are really, really sick or really, really healthy. If you or your family member is seriously sick and you will burn through that $5,000 deductible easily each year, the HSA would be a good plan because all you would have to pay each year is the $5,000 deductible, plus your monthly premiums. That’s it! Your insurance company pays 100% after all that. Now if your family is really health, meaning, you hardly ever go to the doctor at all. You can build up each year a tax deferred savings account by saving your deductible each year. This account can then only be used for medical reasons of any kind no matter what your income is. But in a sense, this account, over time, will turn into another big hairy ‘medical’ emergency fund on top of your 3 to 6 months fund. The only way an HSA doesn’t make sense is if you go to the doctor often enough to where you don’t reach your deductible limit but use enough of the savings to where you hardly have anything left.
So my questions to you are…
If you’re upset about Obamacare or just how our government has handled this whole healthcare issue, are you willing to take yours and your family’s healthcare plans in your own hands now?
What changes can you make to your existing insurance plan and lower your premiums?
Remember folks, the government can’t fix your life or your problems. You need to take the necessary steps to fix your own issues.
I hope my posts inspire you to look at what you’re doing financially and if needed, make some changes that will cause you to win financially. I also look forward to reading your views on any articles or postings that I may post. For more money news, facts and ideas, follow me on Facebook, or Twitter. Thanks you!