Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA | TigerDroppings.com
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Golfer
LSU Fan
Coral Bay, St. John, USVI
Member since Nov 2005
58554 posts

Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA

Here are the basics:

- I'm on my employer's plan. Rarely see a doctor. My out of pocket healthcare expenses in the last 2 years (including dental) are less than $300.

- My wife is on her parent's plan until Mid-2013. In a given year our out of pocket health care expenses for her are approximately $1500-$2000.

- We do not plan on having children in the next 2 years.


TigerDeBaiter
LSU Fan
Member since Dec 2010
3054 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
quote:

wife


quote:

out of pocket health care expenses for her are approximately $1500-$2000


Essentially you can pay for these expenses with pretax dollars. That is the main reason right there.

Aside from that, HSA can be used as an additional Roth IRA (sort of). It's pretax dollars, tax free earnings, and tax free distribution (for qualified medical expenses) The way I look at it, you can pretty well count on having medical expenses at some point in your life, especially when you get old. After age 65, you can also take the money out without the 20% penalty, but you still have to pay income tax, as you would on a traditional IRA.

I have a feeling these are not going to be around very long, which is sad, because I think it offers lots of value and choice for insurance plans. Go figure though. I would take advantage while you can.


medtiger
LSU Fan
Cubs Fan
Member since Sep 2003
17909 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
quote:

TigerDeBaiter


Nailed it, IMO. If you can spare the income to put away in an HSA, it's almost a no-brainer for the tax deduction now, the tax free distribution for the little medical expenses you have, and the IRA possibilities aforementioned. The only downside is having to put away money now for future expenses if you can't really afford to.


Golfer
LSU Fan
Coral Bay, St. John, USVI
Member since Nov 2005
58554 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
Would I be better off with an FSA??



Zilla
LSU Fan
Friendswood, TX
Member since Jul 2005
10091 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
an HSA is the most desirable form of retirement savings there is


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medtiger
LSU Fan
Cubs Fan
Member since Sep 2003
17909 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
quote:

Would I be better off with an FSA??


FSA is usually a use it or lose it deal. If the end of the year comes and you don't spend the money, it's gone.


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CHSBears
Texas A&M Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Aug 2007
540 posts
Online

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
I think you might have to have a HDHP (High Deductable Health Plan) to be able to have a HSA (health savings account) and the person with the HDHP also has to be the owner of the HSA.

I do have both.
This post was edited on 10/2 at 12:56 pm


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CajunAlum Tiger Fan
LSU Fan
The Great State of Louisiana
Member since Jan 2008
3623 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
I switched to an HSA with my employer in January of 2009. Each January, they fund the account with $2900, then they pay a portion of the premium on a $6,000 deductible, $6,000 max out-of-pocket plan. I pay the remainder of the premium and also contribute $2900 to the HSA over the year. Even with my wife and 2 kids, on the plan, the account presently has over $13K in it.

The company provided a "simulator" to plug in different scenarios to help make the choice and there were no scenarios where this wasn't a better deal for us. It has worked out even better than expected.


tigerrocket
LSU Fan
Member since Aug 2008
102 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
Does Obamacare limit or do away with health savings accounts?


CajunAlum Tiger Fan
LSU Fan
The Great State of Louisiana
Member since Jan 2008
3623 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
quote:

Does Obamacare limit or do away with health savings accounts?


That's a good question that still needs to be answered. There is debate on whether an HSA plan qualifies as "insurance" the way the Obama plan defines/calculates it. I'm not sure on the specifics. Without some sort of legislation, the HSA option may become more expensive. I believe there was a Forbes article on this earlier this year.

IMO, the HSA is what insurance is supposed to be: You take care of life's minor health expenses on your own, but have protection from a catastrophic event. It's a shared risk product where personal accountability plays a role.



ynlvr
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Feb 2009
1048 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
quote:

IMO, the HSA is what insurance is supposed to be: You take care of life's minor health expenses on your own, but have protection from a catastrophic event. It's a shared risk product where personal accountability plays a role.


CajunAlum, you are spot on. Why couldn't the current deciders in Washington grasp this concept and build on it instead of the wasteland that is ObamaCare?


Zilla
LSU Fan
Friendswood, TX
Member since Jul 2005
10091 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
Cajun, if you can afford to not take out of your HSA, and you are interested in retirement money, I'd save it all!


urinetrouble
LSU Fan
Member since Oct 2007
16999 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
What kind of rate of return do you get on an HSA?


CajunAlum Tiger Fan
LSU Fan
The Great State of Louisiana
Member since Jan 2008
3623 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
quote:

CajunAlum, you are spot on. Why couldn't the current deciders in Washington grasp this concept and build on it instead of the wasteland that is ObamaCare?


I could give you my answer, but that belongs on the political board!



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RedStickBR
LSU Fan
Member since Sep 2009
10212 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
Let's back up a second ... these funds aren't actually investable are they (as that would seem completely absurd)?

Assuming not, you need to weigh the tax advantages and lack of protection against inflation against whether you think you could more than offset the effects of both investing on your own.



urinetrouble
LSU Fan
Member since Oct 2007
16999 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
quote:

Let's back up a second ... these funds aren't actually investable are they (as that would seem completely absurd)?



That's why I asked. People are calling them alternatives to Roth IRAs.


CajunAlum Tiger Fan
LSU Fan
The Great State of Louisiana
Member since Jan 2008
3623 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
My account is with Optimhealth bank and once you reach the "investment threshold", the money is investable.

LINK /


Any return is better than pissing it away on insurance premiums for a service I may not need for 20 years.
This post was edited on 10/2 at 8:25 pm


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Zilla
LSU Fan
Friendswood, TX
Member since Jul 2005
10091 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
yes they are ...i just moved my big hsa over to hsabank.com ....i can invest in individual stocks ...hsa are tax advantaged going in and coming out ...#1 retirement savings vehicle before roth, 401, etc


I Love Bama
Alabama Fan
Alabama
Member since Nov 2007
33751 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
interesting. I didn't know all this.


Zilla
LSU Fan
Friendswood, TX
Member since Jul 2005
10091 posts

re: Tell me why I should or should not enroll in a HSA
google it for some great articles


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