During the pandemic, a lot of people spent more time at home and didn’t keep up with their normal spending habits. Because of that, your remaining FSA balance may be larger than that of a normal year. In fact, FSAStore.com estimates that the average FSA account holder has 30-35 percent more in their account balance than usual for this point in the plan year. With the end of 2021 quickly approaching, it’s time to put your FSA balance to work.
After all, your plan may have a use-it-or-lose-it policy or maybe you can only carryover up to $550 after this year ends. Here are some ideas for using your FSA balance.
Ideas for Spending Your FSA Balance
One of the biggest developments this year for healthcare benefits is the relaxation of rules related to over-the-counter medications. The CARES Act, passed in March 2020, expanded the amount of eligible healthcare expenses for FSAs to include, among other items:
- Allergy and sinus, cold and cough remedies
- Pain relievers like aspirin, ibuprofen or acetaminophen
- Treatments for your feet, such as anti-fungal creams/sprays
- Hemorrhoid treatments
- Diaper rash ointments and teething gels
Although COVID-19 tests provided by healthcare professionals normally are covered in full by health insurance, at-home tests may or may not be covered. However, you can use your FSA to purchase home kits, such as the one produced by Lucira Health specifically to test for COVID-19, and this test was approved by the FDA.
Menstrual care products
Believe it or not, menstrual care products were not an FSA eligible expense until the passage of the CARES Act. You can use your Flexible Spending Account to buy tampons, pads, panty liners, and other over-the-counter products designed for menstrual care.
If you have not seen your dentist in a while, make an appointment now. Dental copays, x-rays, and non-cosmetic procedures are all FSA-eligible expenses.
If you or someone in your immediate family is having trouble sleeping through the night, you can buy sleeping aids with your FSA. These can include OTC medications, eye masks, and adult nighttime diapers.
Where to Shop
Thankfully, healthcare consumers have a number of places they can shop in-store or online. FSAStore.com is an online retailers dedicated to selling only FSA-eligible products, helping consumers feel confident that their purchases are reimbursable.
You can use your FSA debit card in-store or online, and cut down on filing claims for reimbursement. You can also buy with cash or other payment methods and submit a claim for reimbursement.
Check Your FSA Balance
Before you shop, check your FSA balance. You can log in through your mobile app or through our online portal.
Make sure you maximize your FSA balance! The money is yours – put it to good use.