Shopping for health insurance in three easy steps

Shopping for health insurance in three easy steps

December 5, 2016
health insurance
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A lot of Americans don’t know how to get good health insurance coverage at an affordable price. They don’t know what to look for, they don’t know where to start. But shopping for health insurance doesn’t have to be hard. It can be quite easy, in fact. Here’s how you can do it in three easy steps:

1. Talk to your current insurance providers, to see what plans they accept

It’s always easier to call your current providers and talk to them directly, than going to new insurers. So see what they have to offer. It’s possible that they can offer you a better deal, with better coverage. And, if they can’t, you can go searching for new providers.

2. Check out your options

People who are not getting their health insurance through an employer can choose to purchase it either from the government market, or the private market. You have to check them both out if you want to get the best coverage at the best price.

If you want to see what options you have on the exchange, you can visit HealthCare.gov. There, you can enter your zip code and see what is available and what you need to do in order to get an exchange-based plan. But remember that you can only enrol in an exchange plan during open enrolment.

To see what options you have on the private market, you can go directly to the insurers website or use comparison shopping sites. You will have to provide information such as your gender, date of birth, smoker status, household income, household size, zip code, as well as the information for your spouse and children, if you have any. Afterwards, the sites will show you a list of plan choices, and you can select the one you like most.

3. Also consider using an insurance broker

Sometimes you may not be able to find a good plan on your own. But that’s not a problem. Because this is where insurance brokers come in. Using one won’t cost you a dime. In fact, it may save you a lot of time, since the broker will be doing all the hard work.

Brokers are independent, unlike insurance agents, so they can offer you plans from many different companies. The plan will not cost you more if you buy it through a broker than if you buy it on your own, since the broker gets paid by commission from the insurance company.

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