Author Topic: Can someone explain HSA advantages to me?  (Read 2693 times)

tryathlete2011

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Can someone explain HSA advantages to me?
« on: July 20, 2015, 02:27:52 PM »
Relatively new here. Trying to understand whether this makes sense for me. I've tried reading articles but they always end up going over my head. My wife and I max our ROTH and my 401k and have about $2800 additional dollars a month were putting into taxable accounts. I'd rather avoid some of those taxes and I think an HSA may be a vehicle to help me do that. But I really don't understand it.

When can I access the money?

At some point can I use it for something other than healthcare costs?

Can I control where it goes?

Is it tax deferred?

Does it grow tax free?





Aphalite

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Re: Can someone explain HSA advantages to me?
« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2015, 02:36:28 PM »
1. You can access the money any time you have a medical bill, you can either pay for it with your HSA issued debit card, or pay for it by other means and submit the receipt later. This also means that as long as you save your medical receipts, you can delay submission as long as you want. These transactions are tax free.

2. Once you reach the age of 60 or 65 (can't remember), you can withdraw funds just like a 401k, but it would be taxed if not spent on medical expenses.

3. It depends on your provider, lots of HSAs allow you to invest in vanguard index funds

4. + 5. Yes to both, and completely tax free if spent on medical expenses


themagicman

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Re: Can someone explain HSA advantages to me?
« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2015, 02:36:44 PM »
When can I access the money?

At some point can I use it for something other than healthcare costs?
Any time for medical expenses (Or for medical expenses in the past if you do not withdraw right away.) or for anything after 65


Can I control where it goes?

Is it tax deferred?


Yes, most providers have many options. Mine has most vanguard etfs for free. Yes it is tax deferred.

Also, a major benifit is that if taken out of your paycheck you do not pay social security or medicare on this money. This saves around an extra 7.5%

http://www.madfientist.com/ultimate-retirement-account/

MDM

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Re: Can someone explain HSA advantages to me?
« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2015, 04:33:22 PM »
One very important point: you must be enrolled in a qualifying High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) to have a deductible HSA.

Google   hdhp hsa   and peruse the first several non-ad links.

Mother Fussbudget

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Re: Can someone explain HSA advantages to me?
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2015, 08:00:58 PM »
This topic has been covered in-depth.  Good resources:

The Mad FIentist has covered this topic fairly well.  A couple of really great posts on the topic are:
1.  How To Hack Your HSA , and
2.  The Ultimate Retirement Account

Also, from:
3.  JHCollins:  HSA's - More than just a way to pay your medical bills, and
4.  MMM forums:  HSA's - Are They Worth It.

Scandium

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Re: Can someone explain HSA advantages to me?
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2015, 06:18:12 AM »
My wife has one, but it's a bank provider with 0.1% interest and some fees. And it just seems like a huge hassle to get it into a proper investment account. Maybe once we have more money left over, but for now it's a pretty shitty account in our case.