When you’re finally out of the college bubble and just starting out in the job world, one of the biggest shocks is the cost of living. If you have been on your parent’s health insurance policy your whole life and must now figure out how to cover those costs on your own, the process can be more than daunting. It can also be difficult to find the best plan to cover your specific health needs when faced with so many options. But, the trick is to go about it with focus and knowledge of exactly what you need. Here are some tips to get started:
How To Get Health Insurance For The First Time
1. Determine your most pressing health needs
It really doesn’t matter what insurance provider you go with or how much (or little) you pay for your monthly premium; if you don’t have insurance that you’re going to be able to use for the things you need most, you will be wasting money. If you have a pressing health concern or a precondition, make sure to tailor your plan around those needs and make sure you find a plan that will cover them.
2. Consider your employer’s health care first
If you have the opportunity to go with a company-provided health care plan, it is almost always the best way to go financially. Employers will often cover a part of your monthly insurance premiums and can buy policies in bulk by forming relationships with one insurance provider. This allows employees to get health care benefits for less than what they would pay individually. If you are trying to decide between multiple plans provided by your employer’s health care company, it is best to speak with HR and contact the insurance company directly to get more details and clear up hesitations.
3. Take the time to shop around
This may seem obvious, but that’s only because it’s true. Finding the perfect insurance policy is enormously time-consuming, and trying to get any sort of usable information about what types of things will be covered from insurance company representatives can feel like pulling teeth. However, the worst thing you can possibly do is give up before you’ve examined all your options. Don’t simply call two companies and go with the provider that seems better, take a look at four or five different companies and see what they can offer.
4. Don’t go for just the lowest monthly rate
It’s always tempting to just go with the insurance policy that will set you back the least every month when it comes time to pay your premium. However, the whole point of getting insurance is to pay money monthly in order to cover yourself from possible financial loss. If you have a policy with a super cheap premium, but that only covers absolute emergencies, or doesn’t cover routine check-ups, you will lose money every time you go to the doctor. Look for policies that cover all or most of regular doctor visits, common medical procedures, and medication. And make sure you have a policy with a deductible that won’t send you into major debt in the event of an emergency.
What do you wish you would have known when you had to get health insurance for the first time?
Today’s post is written by Susan who is a freelance blogger who enjoys writing about automotive and health news, technology, lifestyle and personal finance.