With Open Enrollment for health insurance plans right around the corner, now is the perfect time to consider all facets of your current coverage. Our Health Savings Accounts can be a great addition to any family or individual plan to help complete your coverage needs. HSAs allows you to set aside pretax income to cover any immediate or future health care costs that are not paid for by your insurance. While most people know they are a great way to plan for medical expenses, HSAs are also a lot more versatile than you may think!
Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your HSA Benefits
An HSA is a triple tax-free account. Your money goes into the account before it’s taxed, grows tax-deferred, and can be withdrawn tax-free to pay unreimbursed medical expenses, including your deductible and health care costs that are not covered by your health insurance plan (such as, but not limited to, dental and vision care). If you buy long-term-care insurance, you can also use HSA funds to pay for the annual premiums. 2019 HSA rules state that the maximum-allowed long-term-care premiums range from $780 (for those between the age of 40 and 50) to $5,200 (for those over 70).
While you probably already knew that HSA funds can be used to cover current expenses, if you can avoid immediately spending your HSA money, your balance can keep GROWING year after year. The good news is, there’s no deadline for spending; an HSA lets you roll over any money you didn’t spend by December 31st to the following year.
An additional, somewhat lesser known tax-saving option, is that Health Savings Account rules allow for a once-per-lifetime transfer from a traditional or Roth IRA to an HSA. Taking into account yearly contribution limits, if, at age 55 you rolled over the (2019) maximum amount of $8,000, and assuming your HSA returns 6% over 10 years, at age 65 you’d have $14,327 tax-free dollars to spend on medical expenses. Compare that to the $10,899 you would have if you’d left the same amount in your IRA (at a 24% marginal rate), and that’s a difference of over $3,000!
Unsure how much you need to save up? Our Health Savings Account Goal Calculator is a great tool for helping to determine monthly contributions to reach your savings goal!
Here’s some additional tips for getting the most out of your health savings account:
- Individuals who are eligible by the first day of the last month of their taxpaying year (typically December 1st), can contribute the full yearly maximum. If you are 55 or older, you can also contribute the entire $1,000 catch-up contribution.
- Keep your receipts. You can always reimburse yourself for earlier expenses if they were incurred after you first set up your HSA.
- If you have a working child who is just starting out with an HSA, you can help them maximize their annual contributions. Make a deposit directly into their HSA, and your child gets the tax benefit.
- After age 65, if you would like to withdraw from your account for non-medical expenses, you can do so without owing a tax penalty.
When the time to pay a medical bill eventually comes, extracting the money from your HSA is as simple as using a checking account. Your first set of checks are on us at Frontier Bank! Check out the many other benefits of having a Health Savings Account with us, and then give us a call to set up your HSA today!
Trust Administrative Assistant