When you turn 65, it’s time to face Medicare head-on. Many individuals opt to get a Medicare Supplement, which can pick up the remaining costs that Medicare leaves behind, like coinsurance and deductibles.
And when you start getting quotes for Medicare Supplement plans, you might hear the term “household discount” come up. So, what exactly is a household discount for Medicare Supplement plans? And more importantly, how can you get the discount?!
What is the household discount?
The Medicare Supplement Household Discount is a percentage off your Medicare Supplement premium, and it’s generally for two spouses who hold a Medicare Supplement with the same company at the same time. However, the discount requirements vary by carrier and state.
For example, one company offers a 15% household discount, and these are their eligibility requirements:
- You must apply for a Medicare supplement plan at the same time as another Medicare eligible adult or the other Medicare eligible adult must currently be covered by a Medicare Supplement with our company.
- The Medicare eligible adult must be either (a) your spouse; (b) be someone with whom you are in a civil union partnership; or (c) be a permanent resident in your home.
- The household discount will only be applicable if a policy for each applicant is issued.
- The discounted rate will apply as long as both policies remain in force.
There are companies that will offer a household discount even if your spouse or partner doesn’t have a policy – they just have to live with you! Some companies don’t even require that person to be a spouse or partner – they will give you a discount just for having a roommate over the age of 18.
The thought behind this is that people who live alone are more likely to have more insurance claims than those who live with someone. The insurance company is rewarding individuals who choose to live with someone, because it will likely save the company money in the long run.
What is a typical household discount?
The most popular household discount is 7% off, but the discount ranges from 0-15%.
Insurance is regulated differently from state to state, so you’ll often find that discounts vary by location, even if it’s the same insurance carrier.
For example, one company offers a 5% discount in Missouri, no discount in Florida, and a 7% household discount in Illinois.
Should I choose a Medicare Supplement company based on the household discount?
You should not choose a Medicare Supplement company based solely on their household discount. While the household discount will certainly be a factor if you fit the eligibility requirements, it will not be the only guide when choosing the right policy for you.
For example, Company A might offer a 15% discount, and Company B might offer a 7% discount.
However, Company A might charge $140 for their Medicare Supplement plan, and Company B might charge $110.
When you factor in the discounts, here’s what you get:
|Company A||Company B|
|Discount||15% discount||7% discount|
|Total with discount||$119.00/month||$102.30/month|
Keep in mind that your insurance agent will run quotes with many different companies, and he or she will be able to tell which plan is the most cost effective with the household discount.
Who is eligible for the discount?
If you have a BlueCross BlueShield of Nebraska medicare supplement, or are planning on enrolling. The household discount is available for applicants who reside with at least one other person 18 years of age or older (but no more than three people age 60 or older), who is their legal spouse or has resided with the applicant continuously for the last 12 months.
What about existing members?
Existing Medicare BlueCross BlueShield Supplement members wanting to qualify will need to complete a new application, which will require medical underwriting and be subject to approval by BlueCross BlueShield of Nebraska.
How Suhr & Lichty Insurance Can Help
Rest assured – our team is here to help. As independent insurance agents, we represent Nebraska’s best insurance companies, including BlueCross & BlueShield of Nebraska.
We can advise you on your insurance options and ensure you’re still receiving the combination of value and protection that is right for your family.
Not a Suhr & Lichty Insurance client yet? Click here to request an insurance review by one of our agents, or call our office at (402) 643-2911.