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How Health Savings Accounts Work

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Author's Note: How Health Savings Accounts Work

Writing about financial planning is not a natural fit for me — just ask my wife, the family budgetmaster — but I always learn a tremendous amount in the process. I admit that I really knew very little about health savings accounts before starting my research for this article, but now I'm convinced it's the perfect solution for us. As a freelance writer, I pay for my own health insurance coverage. To keep premiums affordable, we go with a high-deductible plan. Adding an HSA to our financial mix would provide a nice tax-free buffer for any unplanned trips to the emergency room. Maybe this newfound expertise will even raise my wife's opinion of my financial prowess. A man can dream, can't he?

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Sources

  • Carrns, Anne. "Shopping for Investments in a Health Savings Account." The New York Times. Dec. 11, 2013 (Oct. 17, 2014) http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/12/your-money/shopping-for-a-health-savings-account.html
  • Carrns, Anne. "Using Health Savings Accounts to Invest for Retirement." The New York Times. Aug. 19, 2014 (Oct. 17, 2014) http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/20/your-money/using-health-savings-accounts-to-invest-for-retirement.html?_r=0
  • Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. "Personal Saving Rate" (Oct. 17, 2014) http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/series/PSAVERT/
  • Fidelity. "Retiree health costs hold steady." June 11, 2014 (Oct. 17, 2014) https://www.fidelity.com/viewpoints/retirement/retirees-medical-expenses
  • Internal Revenue Service. "Publication 969" (Oct. 17, 2014) http://www.irs.gov/publications/p969/ar02.html#en_US_2012_publink1000204081
  • Kaiser Family Foundation. "Employer-Sponsored Family Health Premiums Rose 3 Percent in 2014." Sept. 10, 2014 (Oct. 17, 2014) http://kff.org/health-costs/press-release/employer-sponsored-family-health-premiums-rise-3-percent-in-2014/
  • Mann, Leslie. "What to know before investing in an HSA." The Chicago Tribune. Jan. 31, 2014 (Oct. 17, 2014) http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2014-01-31/business/sc-cons-0130-invest-20140131_1_health-savings-accounts-hsas-health-insurance
  • National Business Group on Health. "U.S. Employers Changing Health Benefit Plans to Control Rising Costs, Comply with ACA, National Business Group on Health Survey Finds." Aug. 13, 2014 (Oct. 17, 2014) https://www.businessgrouphealth.org/pressroom/pressRelease.cfm?ID=234
  • Waldrop, Sharon Anne. "How to Get the Most Out of Your Health Savings Account." Forbes. Aug. 27, 2013 (Oct. 17, 2014) http://www.forbes.com/sites/nextavenue/2013/08/27/how-to-get-the-most-out-of-your-health-savings-account/

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