6 Replies Latest reply on Feb 16, 2012 6:30 PM by Michigander

    Retirement before 65

    notso_old

      My biggest concern about retiring before 65 (I'll be 64 in a few months) is that medicare is not effective until 65, unless I was disabled.  I'm not disabled and I'm in good health.  However, I've read numerous articles about illness costs leaving people homeless.  My home will not be paid off until I'm 80, though I do have a lot of equity in my home.  My TIAA-Cref retirement account is below $100,000 because I didn't have a retirement account until I was 38 then I took a big hit when the market crashed.  I lost over 10K, which I've regained now but still puts me behind. 

      Has anyone experienced retiring and getting their own insurance?  If so, do you have suggestions on what insurance companies have a good plan with reasonable costs?  I know that's a lot to ask in these times.

      Thank you.

        • Re: Retirement before 65
          JerryD
          notso_old said...

               
                    

          My biggest concern about retiring before 65 (I'll be 64 in a few months) is that medicare is not effective until 65, unless I was disabled.  I'm not disabled and I'm in good health.  ...

          Has anyone experienced retiring and getting their own insurance?  If so, do you have suggestions on what insurance companies have a good plan with reasonable costs?  I know that's a lot to ask in these times.

          Thank you.

               
                          

          We have pretty good experience doing that even when we were not retired. In 2 states, IL and AR, I figure a $2500 deductible Blue Cross policy cost about $300-350/month per person. We have used it for some fairly costly medical. Using BCBS brings lower costs due to their negotiated fees during your deductible period. You sound healthy which avoids underwriting and possible coverage restrictions and at 64 I wouldn't hesitate to do a year on BCBS private insurance. We did 7-8 years with 2 or 1 of us covered. Not cheap, but short term.
            • Re: Retirement before 65
              notso_old

              Hi Jerry,

              Good to know about BCBS.  Thank you very much.

              Have a great day!

              Ann

                • Re: Retirement before 65
                  Michigander
                  While this discussion has been quiet for a while, my comments may be of interest to someone.
                  I retired at 62 because I lost my job due to the economy, couldn't find another one, so filed for Social Security and found a part-time job to keep me busy.  My COBRA eligibility expired on New Year's Day, so now I'm private pay.  While I theoretically had my choice of several insurance coverages, the state of my health and the insurance companies' underwriting requirements left me with just one realistic option.
                   
                  So I have a conversion policy with the HMO I was with before, but I have no prescription coverage any more.  I'm making do by having my doctor switch me to as many generics as possible, getting free samples from my doctor for my most expensive brand name drugs, changing to a less convenient pharmacy with lower prices, and taking a deep breath and writing big checks there as necessary.  Fortunately, I'll only need to do this for 14 months until I qualify for Medicare (assuming that it still exists when I get there).  I don't know what I'm going to do if my doc ever runs out of samples of the brand name drug that costs $700 a month at my pharmacy
                    • Re: Retirement before 65
                      JerryD
                      Are there programs that your doctor might know of where you can petition the drug company for assistance and relief? I know there are for those on Medicare. I would also try to research what options you have from the state.
                       
                      PS: Born in Detroit, raised in the U.P., graduated from college there, go back every year at least once. Took our first trip back for a couple day tour of the Detroit/Ann Arbor areas last summer. Love Michigan!
                        • Re: Retirement before 65
                          Michigander
                          Thanks for reminding me, JerryD.  I have four different prescription discount program cards.  I should have included that on my list.  Without them, I'd be spending even more for prescriptions.  Unfortunately, not all of my drugs are covered but some of them are.
                          Some of the pharma company programs are too intrusive.  They require me to disclose information about my life that I'm just unwilling to supply, so I live without any of those benefits that I might qualify for.  I'm not so needy that I feel like I have to compromise my dignity entirely.
                  • Re: Retirement before 65
                    notso_old said...



                    My biggest concern about retiring before 65 (I'll be 64 in a few months) is that medicare is not effective until 65, unless I was disabled.  I'm not disabled and I'm in good health.  However, I've read numerous articles about illness costs leaving people homeless.  My home will not be paid off until I'm 80, though I do have a lot of equity in my home.  My TIAA-Cref retirement account is below $100,000 because I didn't have a retirement account until I was 38 then I took a big hit when the market crashed.  I lost over 10K, which I've regained now but still puts me behind. 

                    Has anyone experienced retiring and getting their own insurance?  If so, do you have suggestions on what insurance companies have a good plan with reasonable costs?  I know that's a lot to ask in these times.

                    Thank you.

                    Looking to retire early and experiencing significant frustration with cost of personal insurance. Health insurance premiums between the two of seems to be cost prohibitive in Mass. Looking for imput.