Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
What do you guys/gals pay for health insurance?
Old 02-12-2009, 11:02 AM   #1
Full time employment: Posting here.
cardude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 599
What do you guys/gals pay for health insurance?

Those of you who have to actually purchase insurance and are not on medicare I'm talking about.

I am married, 43 (wife 42) and we have two kids 9 and 11. We are all healthy non-smokers (even the kids!).

I found some policies as low as around $600 per month, but with big deductables and pretty big co-pays.

What should I be considering as I shop around for health insurance? I was thinking that all we needed was basic, catastrophy-type insurance so that's why I'm looking at these big deductable plans. Sort of self insure for the regular day to day stuff. Of course, I don't know what I'm doing........
__________________

__________________
cardude is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 02-12-2009, 12:00 PM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Bikerdude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,901
Quote:
Originally Posted by cardude View Post

What should I be considering as I shop around for health insurance? I was thinking that all we needed was basic, catastrophy-type insurance so that's why I'm looking at these big deductable plans. Sort of self insure for the regular day to day stuff. Of course, I don't know what I'm doing........
I think your on the right track. I would look at anything subsidized by your State first (you probably don't qualifiy). If that fails, I would open an HSA (Health Savings Account) with a high deductible plan. They have many tax benefits and if you stay healthy you may even run a surplus. If your lucky, you can find one that includes "preventative" HC like physicals, blood tests, shots etc. Good luck
__________________

__________________
“I guess I should warn you, if I turn out to be particularly clear, you've probably misunderstood what I've said” Alan Greenspan
Bikerdude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 01:04 PM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso) Give me a forum ...
REWahoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Texas Hill Country
Posts: 42,149
I agree with Bikerdude's recommendation that you look for a HSA eligible policy. I've had a $5,000 deductible HSA with BCBS of TX for the past couple of years and been reasonably happy with it. Rates have gone up an average of 8% per year - so far.
__________________
Numbers is hard

When I hit 70, it hit back

Retired in 2005 at age 58, no pension
REWahoo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 02:05 PM   #4
Full time employment: Posting here.
Urchina's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Central Coast, California
Posts: 891
We're not in your category (as DH's company provides great health insurance for us), but I'd keep an eye on prescription benefits, especially if you have a family history of prescription-affected conditions (like heart disease, high cholesterol or blood pressure, diabetes, glaucoma, arthritis, etc). I'd be hesitant to sign up for a policy that didn't cover prescriptions for chronic illnesses.
__________________
"You'd be surprised at how much it costs to look this cheap." -- Dolly Parton
Urchina is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 03:06 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Bikerdude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,901
Quote:
Originally Posted by Urchina View Post
We're not in your category (as DH's company provides great health insurance for us), but I'd keep an eye on prescription benefits, especially if you have a family history of prescription-affected conditions (like heart disease, high cholesterol or blood pressure, diabetes, glaucoma, arthritis, etc). I'd be hesitant to sign up for a policy that didn't cover prescriptions for chronic illnesses.
WalMart has a great selection of generic drugs to treat most of the common problems for about $10/month, no insurance required. A great deal IMHO.
__________________
“I guess I should warn you, if I turn out to be particularly clear, you've probably misunderstood what I've said” Alan Greenspan
Bikerdude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 04:10 PM   #6
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
walkinwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Denver
Posts: 2,677
We are 48 & 45, live in NJ, and pay $660/mo for a HMO w/coinsurance and a $2500 deductable. You're on the right track. Insurance should be just that - a way to eliminate catastrophic risk.
__________________
walkinwood is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 05:54 PM   #7
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
mickeyd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: South Texas~29N/98W
Posts: 5,884
Tricare costs me $230/year, but I had to spend 20+ years in the army to qualify.
__________________
Part-Owner of Texas

Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. Groucho Marx

In dire need of: faster horses, younger woman, older whiskey, more money.
mickeyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 06:40 PM   #8
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
freebird5825's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: East Nowhere, 43N Latitude, NY
Posts: 9,017
$120/month insurance premium, self only, survivor benefit from federal CSRS retirement plan, self paid, local HMO in upstate NY, non-urban area (in the boondocks ).
$20 copay for office visits
typically $20 copay per 30 day supply for Rx, brand name
$20 copay for lab tests, sonograms, Xray, mammograms, CAT, MRI, stress tests, sleep study (used to be free if referred by primary doctor)
$240/day in-patient hospital deductible
$50/day emergency room deductible
__________________
"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney
freebird5825 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 06:58 PM   #9
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
travelover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 9,906
I have health care paid by my former employer with a high deductible and an HSA, so I can't comment on the cost, but I'd also recommend the HSA, as it allows you to deduct dental and eye care as well as OTC and prescription drug expenses. It can also be a tax sheltered place to stash cash.
__________________
Yes, I have achieved work / life balance.
travelover is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 07:39 PM   #10
Moderator Emeritus
Khan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Pine Island, Florida
Posts: 6,868
Send a message via AIM to Khan
Quote:
Originally Posted by freebird5825 View Post
$120/month insurance premium, self only, survivor benefit from federal CSRS retirement plan, self paid, local HMO in upstate NY, non-urban area (in the boondocks ).
$20 copay for office visits
typically $20 copay per 30 day supply for Rx, brand name
$20 copay for lab tests, sonograms, Xray, mammograms, CAT, MRI, stress tests, sleep study (used to be free if referred by primary doctor)
$240/day in-patient hospital deductible
$50/day emergency room deductible
Retired fed, MHBP

$75.44/month
$2500 deductible
HSA
Free preventive care including annual physical (which I haven't done)
__________________
"Knowin' no one nowhere's gonna miss us when we're gone..."
Khan is offline   Reply With Quote
To fully insure or go high deductable
Old 02-12-2009, 07:52 PM   #11
Recycles dryer sheets
JonnyM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Modesto
Posts: 334
Send a message via AIM to JonnyM Send a message via Yahoo to JonnyM
To fully insure or go high deductable

I'm of two minds about that choice, i.e. going with a purposely high deductible and paying most if not all medical expenses out of pocket as you go vs paying a monthly amount for more or less "full" coverage. When I FIRE'd nearly 3 years ago, I had a choice of Group plans, including Cobra If I wanted it (at my expense of course) or opting out altogether. I did the math and the plans seemed fairly reasonable for the coverage provided. Still to fully cover two adults (both age 53) with $20 copays for visits and $10 prescription drugs as the only out of pocket we pay about 10K per year. Now here is the interesting part. The dental coverage didn't seem nearly as good on paper, so we eventually opted out, no coverage at all. Fully cash pay as you go. I find that we now question every little thing and I believe in the long run our dental health may well suffer for it.

Do any of you that came of complete coverage thru a company HMO plan to paying everything out of pocket find yourself feeling like you compromise in the slightest way. Like you late 40 something's, will you pay the price for that Colonoscopy your DR will be telling you to get next year? When I saw the so-called bill that I didn't have to pay for that very typical procedure it was laughable, but only because I didn't have to pay it. How will you deal with it?
__________________
It's about the music
JonnyM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 10:50 PM   #12
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
haha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Hooverville
Posts: 22,387
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bikerdude View Post
WalMart has a great selection of generic drugs to treat most of the common problems for about $10/month, no insurance required. A great deal IMHO.
$8 for 90 days around here!

ha
__________________
"As a general rule, the more dangerous or inappropriate a conversation, the more interesting it is."-Scott Adams
haha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2009, 11:06 PM   #13
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 62
Look on ehealthcare.com. You should find lower rates than $600. We just upped our deductible from 6k to 8k. Our premium was going from $262 to $310. So we raised the deductible 2 k and the premium is $ 258 , I think.

ages, 41, 41, 8, 5. It is an HSA which doesn't matter to us since we don't have earned income.
__________________
enfp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2009, 11:50 AM   #14
Moderator Emeritus
Martha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: minnesota
Posts: 13,212
Quote:
Originally Posted by enfp View Post
Look on ehealthcare.com. You should find lower rates than $600. We just upped our deductible from 6k to 8k. Our premium was going from $262 to $310. So we raised the deductible 2 k and the premium is $ 258 , I think.

ages, 41, 41, 8, 5. It is an HSA which doesn't matter to us since we don't have earned income.
You don't need earned income to contribute to an HSA. U.S. Treasury - HSA Frequently Asked Questions
__________________
.


No more lawyer stuff, no more political stuff, so no more CYA

Martha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2009, 12:09 PM   #15
Full time employment: Posting here.
cardude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 599
Thanks for all the info. Yall are a real help to newbies having to ER a little ahead of schedule.

So the advantage of the HSA over just a high ded plan with no HSA is what? I will have some earned income from my two little rental houses, plus some if/when I can rent out my old business building to some budding entrepreneur.
__________________
cardude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2009, 12:45 PM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
FIRE'd@51's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,322
Quote:
Originally Posted by cardude View Post
So the advantage of the HSA over just a high ded plan with no HSA is what?
The HSA advantage is that you can contribute tax-deductible money (whether or not you have earned income) into the plan (sort of a medical IRA). The deduction comes off your AGI so you don't have to itemize to get the deduction and thus, avoid the 7.5% threshold that you run into on sched A. If you then have a medical expense, you can withdraw the funds tax-free from the HSA plan to pay the bill. Whatever balance left in the HSA can be carried forward into the next year.
__________________
FIRE'd@51 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2009, 04:10 PM   #17
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
TromboneAl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 11,201
DW, age 53, 5000 deductible, BC: $257/month
Me, Age 52, 3500 deductible HSA, BC: $244/month

Her's is going to go up $30 next month, mine is going down $20.
__________________
Al
TromboneAl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2009, 04:22 PM   #18
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 91
We pay iust over $14,000 per year for a top rated carrier, Independent Health, family coverage for us and our 2 adult children up to age 26 and dental for DW and me. Usual deductibles. This is the total cost and is purchased through my local Western New York, county bar association and is typical of the full cost of a policy around here.
__________________

__________________
ZMAN is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
health history for health insurance vic Health and Early Retirement 22 10-26-2006 10:07 AM
For you car guys (& gals)... REWahoo Other topics 29 10-17-2006 06:22 AM
health insurance and effect on increased health care costs Martha Other topics 9 08-08-2006 02:54 PM
FIRE, How much do you pay for Health Insurance zcung FIRE and Money 32 06-13-2006 10:24 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:37 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.