When you're in your 20s, you don't think about health insurance too much. Why? Because you rarely, if ever, go to the doctor. Many twenty-somethings don't see any reason to pay a monthly premium for coverage they doubt they'll ever need. Statistically, people under 30 file far fewer claims than those who are older.
But you're an adult now. What if you should break an ankle playing softball? You might be able to pay out-of-pocket. But what if something far worse comes along like multiple fractures from a biking accident or even something like cancer? Your bills could quickly skyrocket beyond your ability to pay.
This is what health insurance is for. And besides, the Affordable Care Act requires you to get minimum essential coverage.
Finding Great Health Insurance
If you're working for a company that offers health insurance, it'll probably be your best, and cheapest, option. However, if you're a contractor, freelancer, self-employed or just don't have this option, you can find private insurance that's affordable and meets your needs.
Whether your coverage is through work or you have individual insurance, the following can greatly affect the cost of coverage.
Plan Your Deductibles Carefully
The amount you choose for your deductibles (the amount paid out of pocket before the insurance starts to kick in) is very important. Like most insurance, having a high deductible reduces the monthly expenses while having a low deductible increases the expense. The question to ask yourself is "how much can I pay in an emergency?" If you have substantial savings, a high deductible can be the best option. However, if your savings are thin, a lower deductible plan might be more suitable.
Plan For Catastrophes
Catastrophic coverage does just what the name implies. It pays for expenses is something really bad happens to you. The Catastrophic Plan is meant to cover those who don't go to the doctor often and don't foresee the need for comprehensive health insurance. The plan is a high-deductible plan that only covers some basic preventative care like yearly checkups and then major medical costs (aka catastrophic events).
Yes, this coverage is less expensive - so here's the catch: you'll need to qualify for a "hardship exemption" to be eligible for this coverage.
Plan For Your Family
Having a young family brings all sorts of new discoveries, including the discovery that having a good health insurance plan can greatly reduce the expenses of having a baby. Simply giving birth costs' averaged $9,600 in 2013 - at that's with no complications. A Cesarian-section? That averaged over $15,000!
If you're planning to have a family soon, be sure to check the maternity benefits. This is one area (especially with individual coverage) that the benefits can differ substantially.
Still Not Convinced?
Good things, like having children, can ruin your finances if you don't have insurance. And if you're in an accident or you get a life-threatening disease, your finances could end up in even worse shape.
You're young, your premiums are less expensive that others, and you have your whole life to look forward to. Go ahead and get your free quote now!