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Health Insurance Tips for Sole Proprietors

No one said that running your own business would be easy.?Juggling business licenses, taxes, accounts payable and receivable, office space, equipment and supplies can be nerve-wracking.?Suddenly, you have to be an accountant, an office manager, a salesperson and a marketing guru all in one.?But have you given any thought to health insurance??As a sole proprietor, you already wear a lot of hats.?Are you ready to be a benefits manager too?

It doesn’t have to be as difficult as it sounds.?Here are three simple tips to help you find a health plan that works with your budget while giving you peace of mind.

Consider an HSA-eligible health plan

Shouldn’t health care be tax-free??The truth is that many self-employed individuals can deduct their premiums from their income for tax purposes.?And new legislation has taken this one step further by providing Americans with access to Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). Thanks to HSAs, almost anyone can afford a low cost health insurance plan linked to a tax advantaged savings account.?These plans are often less expensive due to a higher annual deductible, and they allow you to save pre-tax money in a special savings and investment account similar to an IRA.?The best part is, you can spend money from the account on medical expenses without any penalty and the money you don’t spend rolls over from year to year until you reach retirement age.?Be sure to consult your tax advisor to be sure to utilize this new tax savings tool to its fullest.?

Shop Online!

The Internet provides you with easy access to health insurance professionals who can provide you with guidance and advice.?An online agent can provide fast, free and reliable quotes from a variety of health insurance companies all at once, which can save you a lot of time.?If you contacted every insurance company individually to compare plans and prices, you’d be on the phone all day.   Another advantage to working with a licensed agent is the pricing. Licensed agents sell the same health insurance plans that you’ll find through the insurance companies, and at the same prices too.?With an online agent, you can save time, compare benefits and prices among different insurance plans, plus get the professional assistance you need.?And since rates are filed with and regulated by your state department of health insurance you won’t find the health plan you buy offered for less anywhere else.?

Also, the online application process is often simpler and faster.?You won’t accidentally miss necessary questions on the insurance application, and a good online agent will provide you with a phone number so you can ask questions as you complete the application.?In many cases, the application is sent electronically to the insurance company, which can speed up the approval process.  

Live Healthy

If you want to help keep your health insurance costs down, remember: Insurance companies are in the business of assessing risk.?The more risky your lifestyle choices are, the more an insurance company may charge you for coverage.?There are several ways you can reduce the amount you’ll pay for health insurance and improve your health at the same time.?For example, don’t smoke.?Smoking is known to cause cancer and heart disease as well as other life threatening illnesses.?In fact, smoking is the number one cause of preventable death in the United States.?And watch your weight.?America’s growing obesity problem is linked to diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure.?By quitting smoking and losing weight, you’ll not only improve your chances to lead a longer, more active life, you can also save money on your health insurance premiums.

Working for yourself is exciting and a little overwhelming. With so many decisions to make, it’s a good idea to get a little help when you can.?Consider a Health Savings Account for a health insurance plan with meaningful benefits and tax savings.?And remember another way to keep you insurance costs low is to practice common sense healthy living like not smoking. To find a broad selection of health insurance plans, visit an online health insurance agent, like to help make the most of your health care dollars.?

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