Lynne and Mike

Loveland life coach Lynne, 51, has a separate health insurance policy from her husband Mike, 57, a self-employed musician and guitar instructor. “We don’t go to doctors because our (current) plans don’t really cover anything,” she says. Combined, the couple was paying more than $850 a month for their health plans that also require each pay $5,000 a year out-of-pocket deductibles before insurance will cover medical costs.

In October, Mike began shopping for new insurance through Connect for Health Colorado. “I called the Service Center. It was great,” he says. “The representatives were very patient.” He took his time, researching plans. A plan comparable to what they had would cost them $19 a month for 2014. Another option with far more coverage and lower deductibles would be $216 a month. “At the end, we’re left just picking a company we want to go with,” he says. “The cost savings is fantastic with the subsidies built in. Our healthcare prior to this has cost more than our mortgage. This is amazing, so much better!”