1) Contribute the maximum amount
For the 2021 tax year, the IRS allows individuals to contribute $3,600 to an HSA and $7,200 for family plans (add an extra $1,000 if you’re over 55). This includes employer contributions as well, so if your employer puts money into your HSA, subtract that from the annual maximum, and that is how much you can contribute this year. The more you contribute, the more benefits you receive, so this is the way to get the most out of your HSA.
2) Contribute up to the out-of-pocket maximum for your health plan
The out-of-pocket max is the most you can spend from your own pocket on expenses that go through your medical insurance in a plan year. This contribution level would cover deductible and post-deductible expenses. The max can be different based on your health plan, so confirm your number to make this your strategy.
Note: Your medical out-of-pocket max may not apply to common HSA expenses like dental, vision, and over-the-counter medications.
3) Contribute up to your health plan deductible
Your deductible is the amount of money you pay for medical expenses before your insurance begins to apply. You can use your HSA to pay for these deductible costs. Your deductible is specific to your health plan, so check with your plan for these details.
4) Match your employer’s contribution
Employers often contribute to their employees’ HSAs, and a common option is to match that. This is most likely to be a smaller amount than the other strategies, so it may be more comfortable to start here and then contribute more if you find yourself able to do so.
Of course, those are just four possibilities. You can contribute to your HSA as often as you like, for any reason, until you hit your annual max.
When you’ve determined your strategy, if you choose to set up manual contributions from your bank account, you can do that on the Further Member Portal. If your employer allows it, you may be able to make payroll contributions, which you’d work with your employer to set up.
Tip: Whether or not you regularly make manual contributions, make sure your banking information is up to date online. This will allow you to make both contributions and reimbursements quickly and securely.