3 Replies Latest reply on Apr 13, 2011 3:05 PM by brenreed

    health insurance


      Hi there,  I'm seriously hoping to retire in 3 years @ age 60.  My 1 hurdle is health insurance coverage.  I'm healthy (thank heaven) except for well controlled type 2 diabetes.  I would like to hear from people who have retired before being able to sign up for Medicare/Medicaid.  How did you find health insurance coverage or did you?   Is it so expensive you can't afford it or do you find it manageable?   I'm exploring options, including the possibility of relocating to another state.  Please let me hear from you.  Thank you.    



        • Re: health insurance
          We "retired" before 60 and got Blue Cross with a $2500 deductible in IL and then AR. For a couple with no pre-existing conditions (you appear to have one which requires going through underwriting) it cost around $650/month back in 2004-2006. The spouse pays a bit over half that now for the same coverage. The spouse had some serious eye problems which were covered shortly after we set up the first BCBS plan. The move to AR required a pre-existing exemption for that eye. One very important point is to negotiate and be firm with insurance companies. AR BCBS wanted to exclude both eyes forever. We got them down to one eye for 3 years. You always have the option of escalating to the insurance regulator which we did in IL on a premium increase and we WON!

          Moving to a lower cost state can be very advantageous to the cost of retiring. The real estate taxes were cut to about a third and the house we could afford was bigger and cheaper with property unlike the one in IL. Just make sure to investigate these matters and to look at how the new state treats retirement income.

          Go for it!
            • Re: health insurance
              My employer provides the benefit of allowing retirees to remain a part of their group health plan with the employer paying 50% of the premium and the retiree paying the other 50%.

              My wife is is 5.5  years younger than me and will quit when I retire. We both work at the same place. Since she won't be old enough to officially retire I'll carry her on a family plan (we now each have our own policy because 2 single plans are less expensive than one family plan) when I retire.

              The thing I have to keep in mind is that the university's policy to cover 50% is a benefit that isn't guaranteed. The board could vote to drop that benefit at any time, leaving us to provide our own insurance.
              • Re: health insurance
                Thank you...I especially appreciated the comment about negotiating with insurance companies.  I negotiate for every other big purchase, but it never crossed my mind with health insurance.  I'm already researching options for relocating, taking into account taxes of all kinds, cost of living, access to health care, etc....