Insurance helps people, but many of us put it off, and don’t buy all we need, because it seems counterintuitive. It doesn’t make sense to a lot of people to fix a problem they don’t have yet.
But that’s how it works. Insurance only helps you in the future.
Insurance and Medicare are simply a type of protection you get ahead of time. When you get it early enough, you’re not only covered, but your costs are usually lower.
The Wrong Attitude Toward Insurance
What doesn’t work is to say, “I’ll get it when I need it.” That’s not how it works.
That’s like thinking you’ll buy an umbrella only once you’re actually getting rained on. No question, before you get it, you’re all wet.
It doesn’t really matter if you think you’re right about insurance, or you’re right about your decision. What matters is the consequences to you and your family if bad things happen.
A lot of moms and dads do things to protect their families: a roof over their heads, safe cars, locks on the doors. But they haven’t created enough shelter, safety and protection for their loved ones from things like accidents, illness, or death.
Why Does Insurance Work?
Insurance companies are for-profit. It’s not free, and it’s not welfare.
They have to run a business and make money, and part of the reason that it works is that not everybody needs it. You don’t really want to have to need it, but it’s there for you if you do.
And, insurance companies will reward you if you get it sooner. For example, you buy a cancer policy at age 40, compared to age 60, and you’ll save a lot of money on your premiums.
Medicare actually penalizes you for your entire lifetime if you get your Part B (doctor) or Part D (prescription) coverage late.
The later you are, the more you pay, and that penalty lasts for the rest of your life!
The Right Attitude Toward Insurance
So these are things you have to have NOW, even though what they’re for happens later.
One way to think about it, is how nice or mean you want to be to your “future you.”
For example, I always clean out my coffeemaker at night, because “Tomorrow Brian” will be happier when he doesn’t have to do that in the morning before he gets his caffeine.
Saving money for retirement now will make Future You happier later. And getting the right insurance now can mean the difference between a Future Happy You, and a Future Unhappy You, or Future Bankrupt You.