How to Create Your Own Benefits Package
While working for yourself has multiple perks like flexible hours, working from wherever you want, and not having to answer to a supervisor, it doesn’t offer the other kinds of essential benefits people need to stay healthy and economically viable in the long-term. Having life and health insurance, paid time off, and a retirement savings account is essential.
One of the most convenient ways to get the benefits you need as a self-employee is to join an association geared specifically toward independent contractors. Typically, for a small annual fee, these organizations will provide discounts on essentials like electronics, office supplies, and travel. Most importantly, they offer benefits such as health products and life insurance. Joining an association like the NFICA provides an excellent opportunity to find more affordable rates on health products and life insurance because associations can negotiate lower rates through group buying power.
Benefits are the main reason employees stay loyal to companies
While health, vacation, and retirement benefits help retain, motivate and inspire loyalty among employees working for established companies, the lack of benefits for those who choose to work for themselves hinders people’s decisions to start their own businesses. According to an Aflac Workforce Report, 60% of employees said having a benefits package adds to their employer loyalty.
So why should it be any different for you and your own business?
Allowing yourself to have the same benefits as employees who are part of a company is a great way to stay invested in your own business. While it does take time and money to establish health and life insurance, a retirement account, and other benefits, it’s well worth it because you’re not only investing in yourself and your family’s well-being, you’re showing that you’re serious about reaching your small business goals.
Having benefits means you’re more likely to stay loyal to yourself and your business!
You can’t work if you’re sick
Health insurance is arguably one of the most important benefits you should have regardless if you’re self-employed or working for someone else. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the most expensive.
By not having health insurance, you’re running the risk of spending more money than you would if you were paying for coverage. Over the past few decades, medical costs have risen dramatically. According to the Peter J Peterson Foundation, healthcare spending in 2017 was $3.5 trillion, or about $11,000 per person, and by 2027, these costs will rise to $6 trillion, or around $17,000 per person.
Can you afford to pay that out of pocket? While health insurance may be expensive, not having it is even more so, in more ways than one. Because if you get sick or are in a medical emergency, recovery will take longer without seeing a doctor. And you can’t work when you’re sick, which means you’re losing more revenue the longer you’re out of commission.
The good news is, there are opportunities for independent contractors to find affordable health insurance. The Healthcare Marketplace is a great place to start your search. You can learn more about healthcare reform here. Remember, if you had access to a health plan from a previous employer, parent, or spouse, you could continue that coverage with Cobra for up to an additional 36 months, depending on the circumstances.
Because medical insurance doesn’t always cover every aspect of your health-related costs, protecting yourself and your family by adding supplemental health products can make your coverage even more comprehensive while saving money. Purchasing individual health products can also be a good alternative if you can’t afford major medical insurance. Here are some examples of what is considered a health care product. NFICA offers a new telemedicine program, Healthiestyou by Teledoc, for only $9 a month, and will soon be offering a limited-benefit medical plan, an accident medical expense plan, critical illness, and more, all at competitive rates!