5 simple ways to save on health insurance premiums
Edward Neeman | Published: June 14, 2018
It seems as though health plans are becoming increasingly more expensive with each year. The rising rates of insurance premiums may even be frightening some people off, compelling them to take their chances without adequate coverage. While going without health insurance is not recommended, those who are young and healthy see it as the cheaper option. Fortunately, there are some things each of us can do to bring down those health insurance quotes and make the burden on our pocketbooks a little lighter.
1. Explore Your Options, Including Private Health Insurance
There are many alternatives to standard health plans that may make more financial sense to pursue, either as a replacement for your affordable health insurance policy or to supplement it. Discount health plans are offered by a number of organizations. Banks, employers, labor unions, discount companies, and non-profit associations all offer different types of health plans that can bring down the rate of your insurance premiums. These are membership programs that are separate from insurance, offering their members discounts of 20% to 60% on items typically not covered by health insurance. Such discounts may be available on chiropractic services, alternative medicine, and adult dental and vision care.
In a recent survey, it was found that 90% of people stick with the same policy year after year because they think those same benefits are the best they can do. Similarly, the study found that 80% of people spend less than one-hour shopping around for health insurance quotes. By utilizing a service like First Quote Health, it's possible to find better alternatives that may offer better benefits at lower insurance premiums. By taking more time to compare both affordable health insurance plans and private health insurance plans, you can possibly find an alternative that will save you hundreds in monthly premiums.
3. Increase Your Deductible
It's common knowledge that the more you're willing to pay in deductibles, the less you're going to have to pay each month in insurance premiums. This is a trade-off that must be considered carefully and may not be appealing to everyone. For individuals who rarely get sick, this may be an enticing choice. However, this may not be right for someone with frequent or chronic health problems. It really depends on your situation and on your personal outlook.
If the concern of getting slammed with a big hospital bill has you worried about raising your deductible, consider coupling this option with a health savings account. Contributions deposited into the health savings account are not taxed, so that will save you money right away. Additionally, as this is typically an option offered at work, your employer may also contribute to the account, based on your own account preferences. As the year progresses, you can use that money for healthcare expenses, until all of the funds have been exhausted.
4. Eliminate Risk Behaviors
We all have our habits and they can be difficult to quit, especially in terms of addiction. We know the dangers of cigarette smoking and alcohol abuse, for instance, but doing what's best for us often takes a tremendous amount of willpower. On the plus side, if you can kick a habit, your insurance company may reward you. Most companies will offer lower health insurance quotes to individuals who have quit smoking, drinking, or engaging in other risk behaviors.
There may even be discounts available for seeking professional help in quitting some habits. Even if your policy doesn't cover Alcoholics Anonymous or other forms of drug treatment programs, you may be able to pay for the cost in other ways. One possibility is to use your health savings account to pay for treatment and/or counseling. Changing your lifestyle will leave you feeling better and leave more money in your wallet for more worthwhile activities.
5. Technology Can Earn You Credit And Discounts
Another way to lower your insurance premiums is by taking advantage of new technologies. Many insurance companies will offer discounts to clients who utilize certain apps, for instance. A fitness tracker is one such software app that may reduce your monthly insurance payments because it shows your interest in living a healthier lifestyle. Most fitness trackers automatically upload your activity, so that can be used to verify your participation in physical fitness routines.
As new advances are applied to healthy living, we can better monitor our health status and pursue better ways of living. This all contributes to reducing the risks of developing certain degenerative diseases, heart problems, and weight management issues. That, in turn, saves insurance companies money they would otherwise be spending on more hospital and healthcare bills, so they are happy to reward their clients for living healthier lives.
While there are a few lifestyle changes you can make to produce lower insurance premiums, the overall best thing you can do is to continuously shop around for better plans. Insurance companies are constantly updating or revamping their policies, so it's not uncommon to find cheaper plans every year. First Quote Health is one option for looking at a variety of plans in one place. This is especially helpful in determining what benefits are offered by each plan, how each service will meet your prescription needs, and which company lists your regular doctors in their in-network plan. Comparative shopping is your best option for paying out less in premiums every month.