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Baby boomers get to be seniors at last

As the boomer generation has aged, every part of the social system has had to bend to fit them all in. First it was the school system, then higher education. Were there going to be jobs for them all? Now, those who have survived the march of time, are finally approaching retirement making the sale of health insurance a much more competitive market. We caught up with Dave in Oakland and asked how he was preparing for his retirement. He managed a harassed smile. My 401(k) is dropping in value. I'm rethinking my retirement. We looked back at his plans last year. I was all set up to finally do some traveling. Since my wife died, I've been waiting on retirement to take off and see the world. He was pitched into medical insurance that would give him cover outside the US. He said he passed the time bugging local agents to give him chapter and verse on all the policies. Guess I was a little lonely so I did a lot of research.

Then the stock markets went south and all his plans changed. I've been looking more carefully at Medicare. The cover's not so bad, so I'm looking at policies to top up the cover to get the best budgeted treatments whenever possible. He smiled. I've been doing the round of the same agents. Boy, were they pleased to see me again. We talked about whether he was using the internet. I've been following the AARP's campaign, Divided We Fail, and their plans for an HMO for Medicare folk like me look interesting. I've been using the online sites to get quotes as well. It's more effort because not all of them are set up to do specialized cover for the elderly, but there've been some interesting quotes.

Dave's been a revelation. He has plenty of experience in planning his financial affairs and has been playing the field when it comes to getting quotes. As more savvy people start looking for Medigap policies, the market is likely to get more competitive and the existing discounts and incentives are likely to improve. When actual retirement is coming up, look round carefully for the right cover for you.


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