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When it comes to your health, penny pinching is never the best approach – but then again, you don’t want to pay through the nose either! Saving money on health insurance shouldn't come down to simply choosing the most cut-price option on the market. 

Here’s what you need to consider:

Scope all the options
There are a number of health insurers out there, and reports show that premiums can differ by hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars a year. You need to remember, the cheapest premiums don’t always equal the best value policy. It’s important that you’re aware of the nitty gritty around what every policy covers, what it excludes and the pay out amounts. This is where your Prosper adviser comes in. Prosper advisers have access to the lowest policy rates and we know the policy options inside out, so we can recommend the best option to suit. 

Be healthy 
Insurers love healthy people, so do whatever you can to stay in good health. Eat five servings of fruit or veges a day, exercise at least three times a week, don't drink too much alcohol and chances are you’ll qualify for a premium discount. Whatever you do, don’t smoke. Not only is it terrible for your health, if you’re a smoker, many insurers are likely to bump up your premiums by 10 to 20 per cent. 

Consider upping your excess
Increase your excess to between $1,000 - $2,000 and you can slash your premiums considerably. This approach means you can enjoy lower monthly costs and, should a serious health issue strike, you should still be pretty happy – after all, an excess of a couple of grand will seem like nothing when you’re dealing with a cardiac bypass (and a potential bill of between $37,000-$45,000). 

Make your bank work for you 
Many insurers offer a direct debit bonus, so you can shave a wee bit extra off your premiums if you pay by direct debit. It won’t be a major windfall, but it’s sure to be a few extra dollars that will be welcome in your wallet. 

Did you know: 1.35 million Kiwis have health insurance, and every year millions of health insurance claims are paid out (Southern Cross alone paid out 2.3 million claims totalling $803.4 million in just 12 months).