Pay Less for Health and Insurance Costs
1. Reshop Life Insurance Rates Are Lower, Even Though You're Older: Premiums have plummeted over the past decade, and you may be able to save hundreds of dollars by reshopping your policy, even though you're older now. Term-insurance prices varied widely in 1998, and many major insurers were charging a 40-year-old man at least $750 per year for a $500,000, 20-year term policy. Today, a healthy 50-year-old man can buy a $500,000 ten-year term policy (which expires in the same year) for just $445 -- a savings of more than $300 per year. Compare prices among dozens of insurers at Accuquote.com.
Annual Savings: $300(on a ten-year term policy for a 50-year-old)
2. Save on Meds Generics Pummel Pill Prices: Try switching from brand-name prescription drugs to generics or other low-cost alternatives. A 50-year-old couple taking five common drugsÑa cholesterol-lowering medication for each, plus high-blood-pressure and enlarged-prostate drugs for the husband and an osteoporosis drug for the wifeÑcould lower their monthly costs from about $575 to $37 by switching to generics and shopping at a lower-cost pharmacy. Find alternatives for your medications at Destination Rx.
Annual Savings: $797 (by switching blood-pressure medication Norvasc to the generic brand at a big-box store)
3. Insure for Less Lower Your Home Premiums: Raising the deductible on your homeowners insurance policy from $250 to $1,000 or $2,500 can lower your premiums by 15% to 25% per year.For example, boosting the deductible from $250 to $1,000 on a house insured for $250,000 in northern California reduces the average annual premium at the 22 companies in InsWeb's database by $188; raising the deductible from $250 to $2,500 lowers the average premium by $319.
Annual Savings: $319(on a house insured for $250,000)
4. Raise Your Limits Boost the Deductibles: Increasing the deductibles on your comprehensive and collision coverage from $500 to $1,000, or even $2,500, can reduce your premiums by 12% to 18%. For example, boosting the deductibles from $500 to $1,000 would mean a savings of $648 per year, on average, for a northern California family with two teenage drivers, according to the database at InsWeb, an insurance Web site. Raising the deductibles from $250 to $2,500 lowers the average premium by $1,503.
Annual Savings: $648(with a $1,000 deductible and two teenagers)
TOTAL ANNUAL INSURANCE SAVINGS: $2,064