Another area of your finances that you want to be conscious about, is your spending on medical expenses. And a great way to be prepared is to put money towards a health savings account or “HSA” as it is often abbreviated.
The last thing we want to think about is a medical emergency or even how you’ll pay for healthcare services. Plus, insurance can be confusing or messy and the prices of healthcare continue to go up.
This is where opening a Lively HSA can be a great option for you, especially if your current employer does not offer HSA accounts.
Lively is offering HSAs that come with no fees for individuals and if you’re a small-to-medium business that is looking to contribute to your employee’s HSA, you can do so with a low monthly cost of $2.95 per individual.
Interested in learning more? Below is an in-depth Lively HSA review and summary of their product features
Quick Review: In short, I RECOMMEND Lively for a quality health savings account, giving it a 9.0/10 score. You can sign-up for your Lively HSA and in a few minutes link to your bank account and begin contributing.
What is a Health Savings Account?
If you are reading this Lively HSA review, then you may be aware about what a health savings account is and how it can be used.
But, you might be entirely new to HSA’s, so I want to make sure to cover some introductory information first.
A health savings account or “HSA” is a way to save money for out-of-pocket medical expenses when you have health insurance with a high deductible.
The account can be used to pay for things like your deductible, copays and coinsurance, and can also help reduce your taxable income.
You can also invest your HSA money in index funds, mutual funds, individual stocks, bonds, and other investment vehicles.
And, unlike some other retirement account types, HSAs do not have a minimum required distribution age.
Some notes about health savings accounts
Every year, you decide how much money to contribute to your HSA account (up to the limits). Those contribution limits can be found on the IRS website, as they will increase from time to time like IRA’s do.
Any money remaining in your account at the end of the year is rolled over for the following year.
And what is great about this is your rollovers do not count towards the contribution limits. This means you can keep growing your accounts every year!
However, once you turn 65 and enroll in Medicare, you’re no longer eligible to contribute to the HSA — but you can still use the money you have in those accounts to pay for any qualified medical expenses.
Lastly, you can withdraw those funds whenever you need. But if you use it for non-medical related expenses, then it’s taxable income and will pay a 20% penalty. Once you are 65 though, that penalty does not apply anymore.
While the penalty might be high, at least you can get your money out if some other financial emergency comes up where you need the quick cash.
Advantages of HSA
Besides helping save money in advance for medical expenses, having a health savings account has some awesome tax advantages:
- Your contributions are tax-deductible. This means they lower your overall taxable income. So now that’ll leave you with a lower tax bill (or a bigger tax refund) at the end of the year.
- You can invest your HSA funds if you choose an HSA provider who offers investment options like Lively does. You can earn interest, dividends and capital gains — which are also tax free.
- And any withdrawals used for qualified medical expenses are also tax free.
Pretty sweet deal, right?
What is Lively HSA?
Lively is part of the growing fintech community looking to improve the way we do finances and manage money. Lively is offering the top cost-effective Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) for everyday Americans.
The company offers their HSA account within four categories: individuals, employers, brokers, and other partners.
But the ones that will probably matter most to you is opening an individual account or if you own a business and want to offer it to your employees.
Lively is simplifying the HSA process, especially if your company does not offer you one and you’d like to take advantage of the tax offerings.
Signing-up for Lively takes just a few minutes and with a simple click, you can connect your bank account and begin contributing.
What’s cool is Lively covers fee-free transfers and there is no minimum contribution required to get started.
Lively HSA Features
So what are the product features of Lively? Again they have a few categories for you to choose, but I’m going to primarily focus on the individual accounts.
First, they’ll set up recurring or one-time contributions for you — no paperwork needed. And they make it easy to transfer HSAs from other providers to your Lively account.
There are no fees for transfers and everything is paperless to keep the process simple.
Now, if you want to boost your health savings account further than just contributing, you can invest the money via their TD Ameritrade Self-Directed Brokerage Account.
Although you are putting the funds a bit more at risk by investing in the stock market, many want to take advantage of this to help their money grow.
There are no fees to access investment capabilities, no minimum balance required, and you can set up recurring fund transfers to your investments.
Lively HSA also comes with a debit card, for paying medical expenses like a visit to the doctor or prescription pick up at the pharmacy.
And in your account, if you do not use your HSA debit card you can add expenses for reimbursement as well as organize documents and receipts related to medical expenses.
Lastly, you want to ensure your money is safe. After all, when you contribute and invest in a Lively HSA, your money can stack nicely over the years.
Lively is partnered with Choice Financial – one of the 50 fastest growing banks in America!
Since Choice Financial takes their financial responsibilities seriously, this means the funds in your HSA are safely held by Choice Financial Group and the money is also insured to the FDIC maximum, which is currently $250,000.
Am I Eligible for a Lively HSA?
So Lively sounds pretty good right? Hopefully you see the advantages of a health savings account and the ease that Lively makes opening an account.
But before you try to jump right in, you need to ensure you fit the eligibility of opening a Lively HSA.
So the rules of opening an account are based on the guidelines the IRS determines as mentioned in a previous section above.
However, if you don’t want to read through that all, Lively has a cool and simple calculator to help you determine if you qualify and what your contribute amount can be.
But here are the basic requirements to open an health savings account:
- You must be at least 18 years old.
- You must be covered under a qualifying high-deductible health insurance plan (HDHP) on the first day of a given month. **
- You cannot be covered under any health plan that does not qualify as an HDHP (with limited exemptions). In other words, if you have a secondary insurance policy with a low deductible, you may not be eligible.
- You must not be enrolled in Medicare currently.
- You cannot be claimed as a dependent on another person’s tax return.
** What is an HDHP?
You may have noticed in the eligibility section, I put two asterisks next to the second bullet point. This is because there is a bit of information to share about HDHP, or high deductible health plan.
You can open a Lively HSA if you meet the HDHP requirements, which are:
- It must have an annual minimum deductible of $1,400 (2020) for individuals and $2,800 (2020) for families.
- The annual out-of-pocket maximum can’t be more than $6,900 (2020) for individuals and $13,800 (2020) for families. This definition only applies to the in-network services.
- The health insurance plan must be so that the individual/family pays the first cost of healthcare up to the deductible before any kind of insurance kicks in (preventative care excluded from this definition). This includes prescription drugs as well. The deductible and maximum out-of-pocket expenses are indexed annually for inflation.
The Pros and Cons of Lively
In general, there are a lot of pros of both HSA accounts and Lively.
And from the above info, you probably have a good overall sense of the platform and accounts.
But to keep it simple, here is a breakdown of the pros and cons of Lively.
- Fee-free HSA for individuals
- Easy sign-up and approval to get started
- Commission free for some investment options via TD Ameritrade
- Multiple tax advantages
- Debit card, reimbursement, and receipt organization
- Money can be used only for medical expenses
- Requires two accounts if investing with TD Ameritrade option
- Only for people who have an HDHP (high deductible health plan)
How to get Started with Lively
So, everything sounds good to you and you meet the requirements. Awesome! So how do you open a Lively account? Luckily, it only takes a few minutes to get started, but here are a few quick steps.
Step 1: When you are on the Lively homepage, click on the ‘OPEN ACCOUNT’ button.
Step 2: Fill out the short application form, which will ask for some basic information like who you are, if you have any HSA accounts currently, and what contributions you want to make.
Step 3: Lively will then require 1-2 business days to verify your account. Once verified, you can login and start your contributions.
Step 4: If you want to invest your contributions, you can set-up your investment account with TD Ameritrade. Just follow their instructions.
Step 5: After your TD Ameritrade account is linked, you then can transfer your funds from Lively over to the broker. And from there you can start to select your investments.
Step 6: Your debit card will take 7-10 business days to arrive. You then follow the instructions to activate or login to your Lively account and go to the “Debit Cards” section to activate.
Is Lively Right For You?
Opening a health savings account with Lively and investing the money is a great way to be more financially prepared.
Not only will your contributions help cover medical costs, it offers many tax advantages to lower your tax bill.
But Lively is also making it much easier to get started if your employer does not have or roll-over previous HSA’s into one you self manage.
And the real area that shines, is that Lively is free for individuals to use. Meaning no account fees, maintenance fees, or fees to roll money over.
So if you are eligible for a health savings account, I’d highly consider opening an individual account with Lively today.