5 Ways to Lower Your Premium

If you went to the grocery store and handed over a $20 bill for a $20 purchase, what if the clerk handed you $5 back. Would you say, “No thanks. I think my groceries were worth $20?” Likely, no. Most of us want to keep our own money for our own discretionary needs. 360º tries to keep you informed 360º on how to keep your money in your pocket.

  • Compare plans from several companies. Every company has multiple plans that are suited to specific needs and rates can vary more than you think. Some provide greater value and lower coverage for young, healthy people. Others are more suited for families.
  • Choose a higher deductible. The real purpose of insurance is to protect you against financial disaster in the case of a catastrophic illness or incident. Most people save more money on their premiums than they would have spent on claims.
  • Add an accident/critical illness plan. This enables you to choose a high-deductible plan without worrying about meeting that larger deductible amount and it costs your family about $35 a month. Consider the fact that you have a mostly healthy family and don’t go to the doctor much, but your 2nd grader breaks an arm. If you have a high deductible plan, you’ll be paying out of pocket toward that doctor bill (to the tune of $1,500 or more) if you haven’t met your deductible yet. Many accident plans have a $100 deductible and a payout benefit up to $15,000 -- more than enough to cover that $1,500 toward your deductible. Critical illness plans work similar except they pay you a lump sum cash benefits of up to $50,000 in the event of a catastrophic, disabling illness. This cash pays your high deductible and the rest is convenient for bills, car payments,  mortgages….things that many people cannot cover if they’re laid up and perhaps missing a few paychecks.  You need CI not because you are going to die, but because you are going to survive and it helps eliminate the financial hardship so you can focus on a fast recovery instead of how you will pay the mortgage next month.
  • Review your policy with your broker once a year. At 360º we conduct a comprehensive policy review with our customers because rates and policies are always changing. If there is a way we can save you money, it’s worth the effort to switch plans.
  • Open a health savings account and contribute monthly. The premium might not be lower, but they offer a family deductible, which lowers your out-of-pocket contribution. If you choose an HSA-qualified health plan, you can make tax-deductible contributions to a special savings account that you can use to pay co-pays, Rx costs, dental, eyeglasses and other out-of-pocket health expenses (before you meet your deductible).  If you don’t need to spend that money, it stays in a higher-interest savings account that rolls over from year to year. You can access the money just like a retirement account or let it cook until it’s time to take that Mediterranean cruise in your golden years. Treat your HSA contribution like any other monthly expense; keep pouring money in and enjoy watching it grow.

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