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Just another thing Quora is good for: advice about shopping for the best low-cost health insurance, from the commonsensical Art Forrest, who I don’t know (he is an insurance broker in Georgia) and who offers this advice about buying low-cost health insurance:

“(1) use a broker you trust who will shop the market for you yearly. Yes, brokers get paid a commission, but not using won’t lower your cost; the insurance company will simply “keep” the commission themselves. Using a broker, then, gives you someone who has an interest in keeping you as happy as possible. (2) stick with the “name brand” companies (the “big boys”). Despite what you hear from the “gov’t,” the health insurance market is very competitive; if you run across a plan whose benefits and prices are noticeably less than most of the “biggies,” tread very carefully … there ain’t no free lunch, and your mama didn’t raise you to be a dummy. (3) don’t buy more coverage than you need. Looking for “insurance” (help with large, unexpected bills) or “health care financing?” Try to figure out “how much” health care you’re likely to use, and how much “routine care” you’re willing to handle yourself. The more of the “first dollar” burden you handle, the lower your health insurance premium will likely be. Remember: your health insurance premium has to be paid every month, whether you actually had any health care or not so, for most of us, the trick is to lower that monthly payment as much as possible.”

P..S. I’m shopping for health insurance. Anything I should know? Write to me: info [at] clearhealthcosts [dot] com.

Jeanne Pinder

Jeanne Pinder  is the founder and CEO of ClearHealthCosts. She worked at The New York Times for almost 25 years as a reporter, editor and human resources executive, then volunteered for a buyout and founded...