Finding the Best Health Insurance Deals
Many Americans buy their health insurance through their employers, but others have to find, and pay for, their own insurance. Here are some tips on how to get the best coverage at the best price:
- Research thoroughly. What is available, and the price you'll pay for it, varies considerably from state to state. Speak to several different providers about what they offer. Go online to find out your options. Check out as many health plans as possible for which you qualify.
- If you have a pre-existing health condition, you may not be able to get coverage for it--or your premium may be much higher. Check your state laws and regulations to see how you can get effective coverage.
- Be straightforward. If you do have a pre-existing condition, be sure to disclose it. If it is found later that you had a pre-existing condition and didn't disclose it, your coverage may be cancelled.
- Before you sign up for a plan, figure out how much you'll pay in terms of premiums, deductibles, and co-pays, compared to other policies.
- Least expensive isn't always best. You might want to consider paying a little more for increased coverage.
- Choose as high a deductible as you can afford. You can probably pay out of pocket for treatment of small injuries and minor illnesses--but be sure you're covered for major medical expenses.
- Do not go without health insurance. This is especially important as you grow older, when you're more likely to need it. Skimp on other expenses if you have to, but not this one.
- If private insurers won't cover you, consider joining a high-risk pool. These are available in most states. They're pricey, but they're better than going without insurance.