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Old 11-22-2022, 05:08 PM   #1
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Feds: Help with TSP Annuity Estimation

Can anyone help me find a calculator or worksheet for this?
Please resist the urge to post how awful it is to consider this option.....

This is NOT the basic DB pension/annuity that Feds get under FERS or CSRS.
There is an option to use funds from the Thift Savings Plan (e.g. 401k) to buy a SPIA from Metlife. I found the current "index rate" used for the payment calculation which is rising so I am trying to re-learn the details of this option. I think it is a very mis-understood benefit for Feds. (Nearly everyone in my family is a Fed employee and no one has a clue). I finally found a payment estimator on the awful redesigned TSP website but it's not working and I can't even find an old fashioned worksheet to pencil it out.

I am also wondering if this would help with RMDs.
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Old 11-22-2022, 06:06 PM   #2
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If you log into your TSP account, then go to https://modeler.tsp.gov/. On the TSP Distributions Tab you can choose an annuity. The results are seen by hovering over the colored bar at the top.
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Old 11-22-2022, 06:21 PM   #3
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It was very easy to see the numbers on the old TSP website. I'd give them a call and ask them to walk you through it on the new website (you'll get US based customer support )
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Old 11-22-2022, 06:46 PM   #4
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Thanks!

I had found the income modeler but could not get it to work! Then it worked for a bit and quit. I'm sure I'm doing something it doesn't like but it seems really awkward to me. The payments I'm getting are slightly less than the results on immediateannuities.com. The TSP is Metlife though....not sure about immediateannuities. Honestly I would be more comfortable with the old spreadsheet format. I could model it in Excel and it would be easier to do 'what if' scenarios. I just hope the index rate is lagging and the payout will be better in 2 years. I think DW would prefer the security of an automatic payment if I'm not around
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Old 11-22-2022, 07:19 PM   #5
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I just checked and did have problems using the Edge browser, seemed to work OK with Chrome. I had looked at the TSP annuity years ago and they weren't competitive with other insurance companies, maybe they are more inline now. They do offer a 2% yearly increase option but not sure if it's worth it, definitely take a hit early on.
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Old 11-22-2022, 07:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowballCamper View Post
It was very easy to see the numbers on the old TSP website.
It is UNBELIEVABLE how bad the new site is. The Income Modeler is pretty, but limited.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazz4cash View Post
The payments I'm getting are slightly less than the results on immediateannuities.com. The TSP is Metlife though....not sure about immediateannuities...... I think DW would prefer the security of an automatic payment if I'm not around
I'm getting about the same rates from TSP as immediateannuities. Both sources are just "quotes" and nothing firm.

The number of people who purchase TSP annuities is very small (on the order of 1200-1800 people every year). Whereas there are on the order of 60,000 federal retirees every year. You might be one of that small percentage to get an annuity. I personally can't see that being an option although current interest rates have made it more appealing.
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Old 11-22-2022, 08:15 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by clobber View Post
It is UNBELIEVABLE how bad the new site is. The Income Modeler is pretty, but limited.



I'm getting about the same rates from TSP as immediateannuities. Both sources are just "quotes" and nothing firm.

The number of people who purchase TSP annuities is very small (on the order of 1200-1800 people every year). Whereas there are on the order of 60,000 federal retirees every year. You might be one of that small percentage to get an annuity. I personally can't see that being an option although current interest rates have made it more appealing.
I don't think folks are aware of it plus Annuity Predators have given all annuities a bad reputation. I googled 'TSP Annuity" and found six or more dead links including FedSmith, Federal Soup, and a site for military personnel. TSP does provide an estimate on the quarterly statements of the income available using the annuity but the assumptions are wacky.
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Old 11-23-2022, 10:42 AM   #8
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...I am also wondering if this would help with RMDs.
The ordinary income that you receive from an annuitized amount of tax-deferred money takes the place of the RMD on that money only.

You will still have an RMD for your remaining unannuitized tax-deferred money...
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