My Medicare rates are high! Do Medigap rates increase as I get older? Can I change my plan during Open Enrollment? Where can I find Medicare supplement rate increase history?
The plan was competitive when I bought it but now it is almost double. I don’t know how much longer I can afford it.
There is a good explanation for high Medigap renewal rates. You probably don’t want to hear it, and you probably don’t care why.
But you would like some relief.
Help is on the way. As long as you are healthy . . .
Where Can I Find Medicare Rate History?
What you want is not easy to find. Even when you do find it you will discover the rate information is useless.
Most likely, your Medicare rates are high because your carrier left the market. It is rare for a Medigap carrier to stay in the same market for more than 3 or 4 years.
Once they leave a new carrier comes in to replace them. The new carrier has lower rates. The departing carrier is now free to raise renewal rates with impunity.
Since 2010 Omaha has introduced 4 Medigap carriers to Georgia and retired three of them. Each time a carrier is shelved the rates start to climb.
In that same time frame Aetna has also had at least 4 subsidiaries leave the market. They introduced a 5th new carrier earlier in 2019.
If your Medicare rates are high it is most likely because the issuing carrier is no longer writing new business in your state.
Maybe You Picked the Wrong Plan
Medicare supplement plan F has been heavily marketed as the “go to” plan for many years. Carriers and agents love the high premiums because it means more money for them.
If your Medicare rates are high you should have bought the G plan. But it is not too late to switch.
Unless you are unhealthy.
Then you are screwed.
Renewal Rates Higher Than Current Rates
When you get your renewal and start to look around you might discover that your Medicare rates are higher than new business rates from the same carrier.
I see that quite often but especially for carriers with closed blocks of business.
OLD business is charged a higher rate which subsidizes lower rates for new policyholders.
I call this the cable TV syndrome.
Last year you signed on as a new customer. You got 150 channels for $39 per month.
This month you get your renewal bill and now you are expected to pay $109 for those same channels.
But your cable company is still offering 150 channels for $39.
So you call your cable company to complain. You are told the $39 rate is only for NEW CUSTOMERS.
Medicare insurance carries pull the same tricks.
How Do I Find Affordable Medigap Rates?
There are no easy answers. Here are a few tips.
- Look for carriers that have been active in GA for 5 or more years
- Don’t buy from someone that has been here less than 2 years
- Don’t chase the low rate
- Ask friends and relatives for an AGENT referral
Bob Vineyard is a GA Medicare expert with more than 45 years experience. Bob is also on Medicare.
Are your Medicare rates high?
Here is my offer. Give me 10 minutes on the phone. Call and ask ANY Medicare questions. If you don’t like my answer we part as friends. After all, it isn’t personal, just business.
But if you do like what you hear we move forward on your timetable. Allow me an opportunity to EARN your business.
I call this an “offer you can’t refuse”.
Full Medicare supplement rate reports for any plan. Just ask.
How easy is that?