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Individual Health Insurance Cost Question & Answers

2014 February 8
by Sarah Fields

John asks…

what is the average cost of individual health insurance?

i have to get my own plan b/c i will not be eligible to be covered by my parents any more.

im just looking to see what companies are good and how much health insurance will cost me.

i will probably need some good coverage as i am a hardcore mountain biker (crashes are inevitable)

Sarah Fields answers:

It’s not really possible to give you an average dollar amount without more information. But it’s easy to find out what’s available in your area. Talk to a licensed agent who represents more than one insurance company, or get free quotes online through a site like eHealthInsurance.com, where I work.

Health insurance options and prices can vary widely between one state and the next. Your monthly premiums may also depend on your age, health, and which part of the state you live in. If you’re fairly young and healthy, however, you may have some surprisingly affordable options.

You’ll also need to think about what kind of coverage you want. For example, do you visit the doctor often or use prescription drugs? If so, you may be willing to pay a bit more for your monthly premium in order to have a lower deductible. (The deductible is the amount you have to pay out of pocket before your insurance coverage kicks in.) But if you rarely go to the doctor and you just want something to cover you in case of serious illness or injury (wear your helmet!), a plan with a higher deductible and lower monthly premiums might be a good match.

So talk to an agent to explore your options. It doesn’t cost anything extra to work through an agent. You can talk with a licensed agent at eHealthInsurance.com by calling 1-800-977-8860.

Good luck!

Amir M, licensed agent

Thomas asks…

How do I get individual health insurance?

I am a college student looking to get health insurance. I had it at one point when I was a kid, and have never seen a use for it until now. I can’t get it through my parents (they dont have it either) and my job doesn’t offer it to part-timers. I am going to school full time next semester. But will most likely be switching to a university again after that. If you know of any low cost insurance or who to talk to, it would be greatly appreciated!

Sarah Fields answers:

Destiny,

The low cost providers in each state are usually different companies, so you’ll need to find a local health insurance broker website to get that information. The best search is to use is: health insurance {your city or state}. This will give you websites that provide quotes in your location. Most of the websites also have agents/brokers you can talk to if you have questions.

When you switch to a university, you may have to change insurance plans. Many universities have their own health insurance, or have specific requirements that your insurance plan must meet. Check with the university medical center and they can give you information about the school’s program.

Chris asks…

How can I “prove” that I purchased medical insurance in order to write it off?

I itemize and writing off a portion of the $6k I paid in insurance premiums would help. I am self-employed and, because decent individual health insurance is nearly extinct, I got my insurance through my domestic partner’s employer. How can I “prove” that I paid for this health insurance? Do I need to have a $6k check written to my domestic partner that says “for health insurance” on it or am I pretty much screwed? (Which I’ve been learning is fairly typical for self-employed persons.)

Sarah Fields answers:

The answer is the same as you asked before. The costs must be 1)more than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income, 2) you must be eligible to itemize so your itemized expenses must be more than your standard deduction, this is not a write off on your schedule C, 3) it cannot be a pretax deduction on your domestic partners insurance. If it is pretax then it is not deductible at all.

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