Budgeting for Well-Being: Navigating the Costs of Health Insurance

affordable health insurance

In an age where maintaining our well-being is paramount, finding affordable health insurance has become vital to budgeting for a secure future. 

As we delve into the intricate web of health insurance, this guide will illuminate the path toward securing affordable health insurance, ensuring that you can safeguard your health without compromising your financial peace of mind. 

Join us as we explore the strategies, options, and insights necessary to navigate health insurance costs and pave the way to a healthier, more financially secure future.

What Does Health Insurance Cost?

The ACA marketplace lets consumers compare health plans in their area. Insurance costs on the Affordable Care Act Marketplace vary depending on where you live, which plan you choose, how many people are covered, your age, whether you smoke, and household size.

What Is the Cost of Affordable Health Insurance?

The average cost per month for a Bronze ACA Plan is $928. The average monthly cost for a Bronze plan is $928. These averages don’t include premium tax credits and subsidies that can reduce costs for ACA Plans based on household income.

How to Calculate and Compare the Health Insurance

Your budget, current health, the health care you expect to need next year, and what you want from a health plan will determine which plan is best for you.

Deductibles vs. Premiums

Health insurance plans often have higher premiums but lower deductibles or lower premiums but higher deductibles. Your plan will determine the amount of money you pay in monthly premiums and the amount you must pay out-of-pocket when you require medical treatment.

A health plan with a high deductible is a good choice if you expect to receive little medical attention in the next year. Once your deductible has been met, the health insurance companies pay for your medical treatment. Once you have reached your deductible, you must pay coinsurance. You and your insurance company will split the cost of health services.

You can pay 20%, and your health insurance will pay the remaining 80%, up to a maximum amount.

Calculate the cost of your health insurance over a year. Then, consider the deductible. Would you be able to save enough money by paying lower premiums, or would it not be worth it? You can pay higher premiums if you know you’ll save money on medical expenses.

If you expect to need health care in the future, for example, if your baby is due or you plan surgery, a health plan with a lower monthly premium and a lower annual deductible might be an excellent choice. A high-deductible health plan may be the best option if you only use a few services.

Bronze and silver plans are the most affordable options. These plans have lower premiums but higher deductibles. The premiums for gold and platinum plans are higher but less expensive when you need to use the plan.

Plan Benefit Design

The design of a plan may affect your ability and cost to pay for health insurance. The ACA marketplace offers two types of health insurance: HMOs and EPOs. PPOs and point-of-service (POS) plans are also available on the ACA exchanges, but these are rare.

Health Plan Benefit Design Differences

CostLow premiumsLow premiumsHigher premiumsMid-range premiums
Referrals required?YesNoNoYes
Out-of-network care?NoNoYesYes

HMOs and EPOs usually have the lowest rates. They do not cover out-of-network care. They will cover emergency out-of-network care. HMOs and EPOs will require that you stay within their provider network. HMOs require primary care providers to refer you to a specialist.

With PPOs and EPOs, you can access health care outside your network, but the cost is higher than coverage. Higher premiums often accompany this flexibility.

Decide how much coverage and flexibility you need. If you want the lowest-cost health insurance but are okay staying within the network of doctors and hospitals, choose an HMO or EPO.

7 Factors That Influence Health Insurance Costs

To determine premiums, health insurance companies can use a variety of factors. What factors influence the price of health insurance in the ACA market?

1. Your Age

The ACA marketplace insurance companies use a person’s age when setting rates. The market for insurance provided by employers is different.

Costs of ACA Marketplace plans by age.

Health insurance plan memberAverage monthly cost for a Bronze planAverage monthly cost for a Silver planAverage monthly cost for a Gold plan
Adult individual age 21$313$410$450
Adult individual age 27$330$433$476
Adult individual age 30$356$468$514
Adult individual age 40$401$526$578
Adult individual age 50$560$736$808
Adult individual age 60$850$1,115$1,225

2. Where You Live

Insurance rates can be affected by where you live. In states with fewer health plans, insurance companies may charge higher premiums because they have to cover the cost of providing coverage.

Residents in rural areas may pay more for their health insurance because they have fewer choices.

3. Whether You Smoke

The ACA permits insurance companies to charge smokers higher rates. Smokers can pay up to 50% higher rates for health insurance than non-smokers.

4. Metal Tier

Metal tiers allow consumers to select plans based on price. Metal tiers are Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.

Bronze and Silver are the most common ACA health plans. They have lower premiums but higher deductibles. Gold plans cost more than Bronze or Silver plans but have lower out-of-pocket costs. Platinum plans make up a tiny fraction of ACA policies. These plans have high premiums but low deductibles.

Choose a metal level based on whether you prefer higher premiums or deductibles.

5. How Many People Are Covered?

A single coverage plan is cheaper than a multi-person health insurance plan.

6. Different Types of Health Plans

A health care plan’s design can influence costs and how you receive your care.

In HMOs and EPOs, you will find the lowest premiums. However, to get them, you must stay within the provider network. Health insurers won’t cover non-emergency care outside the network in an HMO or EPO. You’ll be responsible for the full cost.

You do not have to select a primary care provider or request a referral for specialized treatment.

When comparing an HMO to a PPO, you must decide what is more important – lower premiums or flexibility.

7. Your Household Income

Depending on your household’s income, you may be eligible for premium tax credits or cost-sharing subsidies. You can save money by reducing your premiums and costs.

Households below 400% of federal poverty are eligible for premium tax credits. Silver plan holders can receive cost-sharing subsidies that reduce their out-of-pocket costs.

When you enter the site, your household income and size are considered.

What is the federal poverty rate in 2023?

Family size400% of federal poverty level
One person$58,320
Two people$78,880
Three people$99,440
Four people$120,000
Five people$140,560


Understanding health insurance costs and their complexities is crucial to your financial security. We’ve examined the factors that affect health insurance costs. These include age, location, smoking habits, and the type of plan. We have also outlined the different options, such as Bronze, Silver, and Gold plans, and the importance of premiums and deductibles.

Knowledge alone is not sufficient; it’s how you use this knowledge that counts. When navigating the health insurance world, it is important to consider your budget and specific needs and weigh the tradeoffs between coverage and premiums. Assess your health status now and plan for your future healthcare needs. You’ll then be able to make more informed decisions tailored to your specific circumstances.

You now have a better understanding of the costs associated with health insurance. It’s time to act and ensure you are protected financially and physically. We can help you find a reliable Affordable Health Insurance. Our advisors will help you find the right plan for your budget and needs. Don’t let your health and safety be at the mercy of chance. Contact us today for the peace of mind you deserve.

Knowledge is power, and action is the key to your financial and health security. Choose the option that will keep your health and wallet in perfect harmony.


How can I find a health insurance policy that is affordable?

If eligible, enter your household income on the ACA Marketplace to find affordable health plans.

Tax credits and subsidies can be used to reduce the cost of health insurance.

Medicaid is a federal/state health insurance program that offers comprehensive coverage for low or no costs. You can check your Medicaid eligibility by entering your household income and family size into the ACA Exchanges website.

What is the cost of health insurance per month for an individual?

A 30-year-old, single person will pay $356 monthly for a Bronze plan. A person paying $356 monthly will be charged $468 for a Silver plan and $514 for a Gold one.

One 40-year-old person pays, on average, $401 per month for the Bronze Plan. A Silver Plan costs $526, and a Gold Plan $578.

Insurers consider the age of their customers when calculating health insurance rates on the ACA marketplace.

What is the health insurance deductible, and how much can you expect?

The average deductible for a Marketplace plan on the ACA is just over $5,000.

Bronze and Silver plans have deductibles over $2,000, but Bronze is the most common. Plans with lower deductibles, such as those with a $1,000 or less Gold level deductible, are available. However, they cost more.

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