If you don’t have health insurance through your employer and have to buy it individually it can get complicated and expensive. The number of health plans that are online is overwhelming and you probably aren’t sure what you need. Health insurance for most people is one of the more expensive items in the monthly budget so you want to get it right. Here are 3 essential tips for buying health insurance that will help you get the coverage you need at a price you can afford.
Get Advice from an Expert
Everyone will have opinions on which plans you should choose, that doesn’t mean they are qualified to give you an opinion. Don’t take advice from friends or relatives even those that work in the healthcare fields but rather talk to an impartial insurance expert. Insurance specialists know the ins and outs of the policies and can help you make an informed decision that works for you and your family. These specialists are compensated by the insurance companies and not you so their advice is usually free. These people are experts, use them.
Figure Out What You Actually Need
This is again where a specialist can help you, but to determine what you actually need ask yourself how often you need to see a doctor. Are you healthy and only go for annual checkups or do you have a condition that needs continuous monitoring? Have you been in the hospital in the past few years? Do you need regular medication? A specialist can help you find a plan that will give you the maximum coverage where you need it the most, be that prescription drug coverage or hospital coverage. Insurance agents also have access to plans that aren’t necessarily advertised on healthcare.gov so take advantage of that.
There are plenty of people with individual health insurance plans who actually have too much coverage. You are probably thinking that’s not possible so here is an explanation. If you are young and relatively healthy and don’t need ongoing doctor visits but you have preventative care coverage at 100%. Sounds good, but you can enroll in a plan that instead has a lower premium and opt for a $10 copay you can potentially save yourself hundreds of dollars each year. Also you should note that some of these plans with maximum coverage won’t cover everything, pregnancy is one example. This is why you should talk with an expert, you get the coverage you need at a price you can afford.
Health insurance is confusing, you want to have insurance in the event that you do get sick or injured and at the same time not pay for things you will never need. Speaking to an expert can help make this much less confusing and help you get the right coverage.