When planning for retirement, one of the most important questions to ask is “What does Medicare cost me?” Unfortunately, the answer to this question may be a bit complicated without the guidance of an experienced Medigap professional.
The cost of a Medigap plan will vary depending on many factors. Below, we’ve broken down several of the factors that you should consider to better understand the average cost of Medicare supplemental insurance for someone in your situation. Then, you’ll know what to do to find a plan that is right for you, and you’ll have a better understanding of what you can expect to pay for your Medigap insurance.
Which Medigap Plan Will You Choose?
There are ten standardized Medigap plans, which are provided by private insurance companies but will always offer the same benefits. Generally speaking, the more coverage you receive and the less you pay out of pocket for medical costs, the higher your monthly premium. Medigap Plan F and Medigap Plan G are usually the Supplemental health insurance plans with the highest monthly premiums, while Medicare Supplement Plan N and Plan K are the lowest. High deductible Plan F is another Medigap policy to consider, since monthly premiums are usually low, but there is ample coverage after the deductible has been met for your Medicare plan.
Some of the things that might be covered by your Medigap coverage, depending on which of the plan options you choose to enhance your Medicare coverage through Medicare Parts A and B:
- Medicare Part A coinsurance and Medicare Part B coinsurance
- Medicare Part A and Part B deductible
- Part B excess charges
- Part A and Part B copayments
The Medicare Part B premium will not be covered, however. You will need to make sure that you can afford your plan cost and the cost of the Part B premium when choosing your Medicare Supplement insurance plan.
Does Your Demographics Affect the Cost of a Medigap Plan?
Your monthly premium will be affected by demographic information such as your gender, age, tobacco usage, and eligibility for household discounts. For example, a 65-year-old non-smoking woman will usually pay less than a man of similar demographics or an older woman who smokes. Additionally, if that woman is married to someone who has a Medigap plan with the same insurance carriers, she may receive a discount. Plans cover just one person, though, so you and your spouse will both need to purchase a separate insurance policy if you both want to save on your health care costs that aren’t covered by Original Medicare.
Does Where You Live Affect the Cost of a Medigap Plan?
The cost of healthcare in your area will impact the rate that insurance companies charge for their plans. This can result in a substantial cost difference between states. If you live in Florida, for example, then you will probably pay more than if you lived in Texas. Rates in Wisconsin might be different from rates in Minnesota or Massachusetts. Medicare beneficiaries should search for rates for Medicare insurance in their ZIP code so that they will be aware of their out-of-pocket costs for premiums.
Are You Applying During the Medigap Open Enrollment Period?
When you are age 65 or older and first enroll in Medicare Part B, the Medicare Supplement Plan Open Enrollment period will last for the first six months you are on Medicare. During this period, insurance providers will not turn you down for coverage or charge a higher premium because you have a health condition, though there may be a waiting period until you receive coverage for your condition.
If you wait until after the Medigap Open Enrollment Period to purchase a Medigap plan, then insurance companies can review your medical history and may deny you coverage or raise the cost of your premium.
Why Do Medigap Plan Prices Vary Between Insurance Companies?
Even the best Medicare Supplement insurance companies offer the same standardized plans, which provide the same benefits. Therefore, it is easy to compare the cost of a specific Medigap plan between providers. Generally speaking, the monthly cost of Medicare supplemental insurance plans will vary depending on which of the three models they use:
- Community-rated: The premium is not based on your age
- Attained-age-rated: The premium increases with age
- Issue-age-rated: Your age when you first purchase the policy will determine your monthly premium
Depending on the insurance company you choose, you may find that your initial cost is higher, but you will save money over the long term.
My Medigap Plans Can Help You Identify Your Monthly Medicare Cost
Our expert team will work with you to help you determine the best Medigap plan for your needs and budget. When you talk to one of our experienced professionals, you will receive a clear understanding of what each Medigap plan and insurance provider offers you. We can also talk to you about Medicare Advantage plans and Medicare Part D prescription drug plans for prescription drug coverage. It’s our goal to help you save on your short and long-term care costs.
To find out more, please call us today so that you can talk with one of our licensed insurance agents. We are not an insurance agency; instead, we will help you find a plan — from Medigap Plan A to Medicare Supplement Plan F and beyond — from a provider that you can trust. You can also receive a free Medigap quote for different