I just finished the open enrollment process at work. I have been putting it off because I know there have been lots of problems with health insurance as a result of all the changes brought about by Obamacare. I am incredibly thankful to have a job and have health insurance with it, but my take home pay will definitely be going down as a result of everything. So, my wife and I will have to look carefully at the budget and try to decrease our spending levels.
As a result, less waitresses will be getting tips since we will have to eat out less and eat at home more. We have been doing some of this since I broke my arm and couldn’t work for a month anyway, but we will intentionally refocus our efforts to cut costs.
Health Insurance Premiums Going UP
Thankfully, health insurance isn’t the only line item in our budget, but we are seeing an incredible increase in the cost for 2014 compared to 2013. Our out of pocket costs will be going up by 18.2% in 2014! And that is after my employer is supporting a 7.5% increase!
That means that our family health insurance premiums for 2014 are increasing by 25.7%!!!
Ouch and double ouch.
Hopefully no other items in the budget go up by that much in 2014. If gasoline, which is currently at $3.25 per gallon where I live, the cost would be $4.08 per gallon. I think I might have seen prices about that during the summer so it is entirely possible.
What if food were to go up by that much? Then a gallon of milk would be approaching $4 per gallon which could conceivably happen. Dang, I am getting a little depressed. I guess the budget will have to be squeezed quite a bit in 2014 in order to withstand the potential price hikes.
I haven’t set goals for 2014 yet, but I have mentally been thinking that I would like to shave expenses by about 5% next year. This would be through a combination of spending less on discretionary items and avoiding additional debt so that as a few debts get paid off, the costs remain eliminated from overall spending.
I plan on sitting down at the end of the year, seeing what the expenses are and then cutting from there. I have a feeling that the costs for health insurance are only going to get worse for the next few years.
So, what impact has Obamacare had on you?