Author Topic: health insurance for family of 6 for FIRE, don't even know where to start! Help!  (Read 2541 times)

tag

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I don't even know how to plan for this because a) who knows what health insurance will look like 3 years from now and b) I'm also just so overwhelmed whenever I research this and c) my kids are young (oldest is 6) so we have to have a solid plan for several years.

I feel confused with what to consider and what questions to even ask - let alone what to actually DO about health insurance for a family. It seems like everything I read pertains to a single person or a couple.

I would love some pointers for just where to start. If you have any relevant links/articles/info please send it my way.

Mr. Green

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Well the good news for you is that max out of pocket amounts for "family" insurance (two adults + kids) is set regardless of the number of kids. The deductible can be a per person basis but your yearly worst case scenario for 4 kids is no different than 1 or 2.

nawhite

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Your first step is figuring out what you would do if plans stay where they are now (i.e. if Obamacare lives forever). In that case, the answer is "keep your income low and you'll get subsidies that make insurance very affordable." I ran the numbers with the subsidy calculator http://www.kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator and assuming you make 60k/year when FIREd, you and your spouse are both 40 and none of you use tobacco, you're looking at $284/month for the whole family.

One step at a time.

Your unsubsidized cost would be $1,259/month. That is probably the worst you'd see on the private market even if ACA goes away. So worst case, you need an extra $15k/year for the years your kids stay on your plan (26 at the oldest). That's your cushion. That's all it is. Lets say 2 of your kids are over 6 years old and thus it will be 20 years before you get down to only 2 kids on your plan, that's 300k extra to save in the absolute worst case.

Lobo

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It might be worth looking into part-time jobs that offer health insurance.  A place to start might be security guard jobs and some grocery store chains.

Spork

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I would make precisely zero plans based on what the Republicans might do with health care. 

Plan on ACA.  If ACA goes away, replan.

When I did this, I started with seattlecyclone's blog post: https://seattlecyclone.com/optimizing-the-affordable-care-act/
The ACA is confusing when you first start looking at it.  I understand your frustration.  Read that post once... then go to healthcare.gov and play with the real numbers in your zip code.  THEN go back and read SC's blog again.  (I think I read it 3 times with some playing around with numbers/plans in between before it clicked... and I still find things I don't know when I go back.)

The one thing I found particularly frustrating with the ACA (and probably any plan after it) is the variability based on location.  The first full year we were healthcare.gov plans there was one and only one provider in our geographic area.  The plans were relatively inexpensive (after subsidy) but... the doctors available were few and not the ones I wanted.  In 2017 a new insurance provider moved in and made really big changes for us:  MUCH cheaper plans (though not HSA compatible) and MUCH more desirable physicians on the plans.  Your mileage WILL vary.... that's just the nature of it.

Gin1984

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Your first step is figuring out what you would do if plans stay where they are now (i.e. if Obamacare lives forever). In that case, the answer is "keep your income low and you'll get subsidies that make insurance very affordable." I ran the numbers with the subsidy calculator http://www.kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator and assuming you make 60k/year when FIREd, you and your spouse are both 40 and none of you use tobacco, you're looking at $284/month for the whole family.

One step at a time.

Your unsubsidized cost would be $1,259/month. That is probably the worst you'd see on the private market even if ACA goes away. So worst case, you need an extra $15k/year for the years your kids stay on your plan (26 at the oldest). That's your cushion. That's all it is. Lets say 2 of your kids are over 6 years old and thus it will be 20 years before you get down to only 2 kids on your plan, that's 300k extra to save in the absolute worst case.
No, the worst would be not able to get an insurance. 

tag

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So helpful, all. Thanks a million.

JSMustachian

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I am planning for the worst and expect no subsidies. I went to Blue Cross Blue Shield and a local healthcare company I work for to get quotes (Memorial Hermann). This should at least give you a ball park figure of what to expect.

If the ACA stays, then the subsidies are just a bonus for me.

soccerluvof4

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This was our biggest worry when we fire'd as we too are a family of 6 and the costs were just stupid. My wife for now found a job actually for a company that does benefits that worked around her schedule to resolve the problem till/if the goverment gets this resolved. This became a 5k difference per month for us and then to she adds to HSA etc... The out of pocket for us is so cheap but wages are not so hot so we invest 100% of it in various things. She was fire'd with me for about 2 years (18 months on cobra) before we did this and to be honest it really took alot of worry out and she enjoys it since she knows she can walk away at anytime.