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 Post subject: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:08 am 

Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2007 2:09 am
Posts: 466
My wife has recently been approved for a HDHP that works with a HSA.

I am an individual and am weighing my options with financial institutions.

Anyone on here have a HSA? What institution do you use? What is your experience?

Thanks for the advice and info!


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 2:25 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:29 pm
Posts: 1627
Location: Seattle, WA
Does your wife's employer offer an HSA through payroll deduction?


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 2:34 pm 

Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2007 2:09 am
Posts: 466
Not currently. Her job is at a small business so I do hope they can work something out.


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 4:10 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:29 pm
Posts: 1627
Location: Seattle, WA
sdogg1m wrote:
Not currently. Her job is at a small business so I do hope they can work something out.


As a small time employer, if they do set up payroll deduction, either they will be paying out the nose, or their employees (your wife) will.

Do you plan to use the account transactionally (to pay for expenses) or for long-term investing?


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 7:24 am 

Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2007 2:09 am
Posts: 466
stannius wrote:
As a small time employer, if they do set up payroll deduction, either they will be paying out the nose, or their employees (your wife) will.

Do you plan to use the account transactionally (to pay for expenses) or for long-term investing?


Why will they be paying out the nose? If it is costly to setup payroll deduction for this benefit then wouldn't that defeat the purpose of its positives? If it does cost then what numbers are we talking here? I am self employed and payroll deductions cost me nothing.

And the answer to your second question is both. Those are two benefits of the plan. You can pay for health expenses and then also grow the account. Now I'll be honest I am not sure how this plays out exactly. I have read some who initially went with HSBC and moved their money over to an investment account after it accumulated. Since this is a young account the bulk of the funds initially will be used to pay for medical and health expenses.

Do you have a HSA? What company do you have the account through? I appreciate your time invested in this conversation.


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 9:29 am 

Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:29 pm
Posts: 1627
Location: Seattle, WA
sdogg1m wrote:
Why will they be paying out the nose? If it is costly to setup payroll deduction for this benefit then wouldn't that defeat the purpose of its positives? If it does cost then what numbers are we talking here? I am self employed and payroll deductions cost me nothing.


That was speculation on my part; I apologize for not making that clearer. I know it to be true amongst 401(k)s that smaller employers get worse deals from 401(k) administrators. That is due to the overhead of running a plan, which is spread over a smaller number of participants. For 401(k)s, either that cost is paid by the employer or the employee. I suspect the same situation to be true for HSA's, but perhaps they aren't as expensive to administrate as 401(k)s.

sdogg1m wrote:
And the answer to your second question is both. Those are two benefits of the plan. You can pay for health expenses and then also grow the account. Now I'll be honest I am not sure how this plays out exactly. I have read some who initially went with HSBC and moved their money over to an investment account after it accumulated. Since this is a young account the bulk of the funds initially will be used to pay for medical and health expenses.

Do you have a HSA? What company do you have the account through? I appreciate your time invested in this conversation.


I know you *can* do either or both with an HSA; my question is, what do you intend to do?

I do have an HSA, in fact two. I had an HSA from a prior employer, which I recently rolled over from Chase to my credit union (for consolidation - one less login/password to keep track of). And I have one currently and contribute through payroll deduction to an administrator called "Health Equity". I don't use it much for current expenses, rather, I am trying to let it build up. I hope to retire early some day, and at that point having a tax-free account from which to pay health expenses (including insurance premiums) will be nice. Yet, the relatively low contribution limit means that it's slow to build up, so so far I haven't invested any of it.


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 10:05 am 

Joined: Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:48 am
Posts: 15
I use HSA Administrators. My small business employer does not contribute to our HSA accounts, does not provide pre-tax payroll deductions for HSAs, or pay for any of the expenses, so I have had to send contributions to them and take the write-off on my taxes. I also pay the annual fee for the account, which I think is $45.


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:32 am 

Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2007 2:09 am
Posts: 466
Thank you so much for your replies.

stannius, so you pretty much put all your health saving deposits into your credit union. What happens when you start depositing more into Health Equity? Can you withdraw from that account for medical expenses?

4happycaligirl, I have looked up HSA Administration and love that the work with Vanguard Mutual Funds. Have you had to withdrawal from that account for medical expenses? How was the experience?

I will probably have to use $400-$1200 a year for doctors visits as I have a young daughter. I am sure over the course of her childhood that I will eventually need to visit an urgent care clinic or emergency room. I do not know of any parents who have had 0 emergencies with their children while rearing them.


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:48 am 

Joined: Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:29 pm
Posts: 1627
Location: Seattle, WA
sdogg1m wrote:
stannius, so you pretty much put all your health saving deposits into your credit union. What happens when you start depositing more into Health Equity? Can you withdraw from that account for medical expenses?


I have about $3000 in each. I have debit cards for both accounts, so I could pay with either; I could also write myself a check or I might even be able to just initiate a transfer from the credit union HSA directly to my checking account.


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 12:31 pm 

Joined: Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:48 am
Posts: 15
Quote:
4happycaligirl, I have looked up HSA Administration and love that the work with Vanguard Mutual Funds. Have you had to withdrawal from that account for medical expenses? How was the experience?


Be sure to link your checking account and you'll have no issues with withdrawals. It does take about 3 days from request to deposit, but in my experience that's typical for online money transfers. The Vanguard funds and the modest fee were what made me select them. Before that, and this was several years ago, I had my HSA with Wells Fargo and their fees seemed significantly higher.


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 Post subject: Re: Health Savings Account Custodian
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:21 am 

Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2007 2:09 am
Posts: 466
Thank you for the advice. I read some great information that I think would be worth passing along.

1) It is absolutely worth using these accounts as an investment vehicle. The accounts can be used as a Super Roth if invested wisely. I dump the maximum into my Roth IRA but was worried about saving since my medical expenses are increasing. If I have to invest less in my Roth and pour more into my HSA, I will do it. Here is detailed information:

http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2011/07/using-an-hsa-as-a-super-retirement-account.html

2) You will want to keep some money in a standard HSA (non-investment) if you expect to reimburse yourself. I have a baby who is expected to visit the doctor, so I will definitely need this. If you are healthy and the only real reason you would need to see a doctor is for a yearly checkup then you most certainly can put more money into your investment account.

3) Having cash helps! My high deductible plan is $3500/single and $7000/family. But the coverage after the deductible is met is 100%. I stay out of debt and will make sure to carry that cash in my savings account. This will give me a peace of mind if my HSA is tapped. I seriously doubt I will go over $3500 per person in a given year but if I do I like the peace of mind to know that an insane medical bill will be covered 100% after deductable. More hospital bills are reaching the insanity level.

I am absolutely angry at the rise in medical COVERAGE costs. I can afford my life but unless costs come down in about 5-10 years, I won't be able to afford seeing a doctor. This is tragic because I have a young family. HSA's definitely help.


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