Retirement, while GREAT, doesn’t come without its own set of problems. Probably the biggest, ugliest, hairiest beast of a problem of all is just how the heck to afford health insurance.
As you may know from the seat-of-the-pants budget from our previous post, we do have the option of using COBRA, at the ridiculous cost of $1,200.00 per month! Good grief! That means we would be spending $1,2000 each and every month, even if every single one of us had perfect health, and we never even stepped into a doctor’s office!
I don’t suppose it takes a genius to realize that this expense will eat through our savings at a monstrously rapid pace.
Obamacare to the Rescue?
Like most other folks stuck in this predicament, I turned to the ACA, (Affordable Care Act), for help, and like some of them, it seems to offer us financial relief. I found a reasonable insurance plan that covered all of us for a reasonable cost, (about $370.00/month), and went ahead and signed up for it.
That was last Thursday, August 10, 2017. My credit card was billed, and I received a confirmation email, but I won’t feel completely at ease with this until I receive our insurance cards.
Why? Let me ask you a question: have you ever tried to use the healthcare.gov website?
While I personally didn’t have problems with poor response times, or, (God forbid!), the website crashing while I used it, I can tell you that subtle differences in how you answer the myriad questions asked, (many of which are subjective, by the way), DRASTICALLY affects what kind of coverage and subsidies you’ll be offered. For example, the first time I tried to wade through this mess, I was informed that our two children did NOT qualify for subsidized insurance, and that we would have to sign them up under Medicaid. Yuck!
This just seems to be a “feature” of healthcare.gov, as other folks have had similar troubles, as eloquently expressed here: “PITFALLS AND SUBSIDIES WHILE SIGNING UP FOR AFFORDABLE CARE ACT COVERAGE“. (And it seems that things haven’t improved much since early 2016!) I guess the only way to work with that silly site is to just keep tweaking your answers until you get a result you are happy with?
At any rate, it appears our health insurance difficulties might be solved, God willing and the creek don’t rise.
On to tackle our next challenge!
Update: 0n Friday, 08/18/2017, our insurance cards showed up in our mailbox. Here’s a pic of what we got, (with most useful info covered up, unfortunately, because it is PERSONAL!):
This stuff seems legit, folks. Hooray!!