Set me straight on annuities and why are they so bad

OK, first thank you all. I was not convinced about the annuity which is why I came here in the first place. I fully understand the "no free lunch". But it is being suggested here that the word guaranteed with the income rider is not really the case, and I am trying to understand why. Won't it end up being a contract, a legal document?

A few more comments and questions after absorbing everything said:


1) First, we are talking about the F&G Safe Income Advantage FIA with an income rider providing a guaranteed minimum withdraw payment of $84K annually starting in 7 years ($750K investment paid right now). The $84K is a combination of an annuity for my wife ($500K) and me ($250K), joint survivorship on both. See the attached images of the illustrations I got.

2) F&G appears to be a solid company with an A- rating. Nationwide does offer a similar product called New Heights.

3) For my planning purposes, I only care about the guaranteed min withdraw payment. I know this is an index annuity and tied to the performance of some index (S&P), and there are caps and other numbers they can screw with, so I am in no way banking on getting more than the $84K, just not less.

4) I know this is not inflation adjusted, and I know that early withdraw penalties, surrender values, and the depletion of the account/contract value will not leave much of anything when both my wife and I pass. Sure, if we pass in our early 80's or sooner, we did not get our money's worth from this. But I am also trying to make sure my wife has this guaranteed income if I pass before her, hence the joint survivorship.

5) The general feedback from everyone seems to be: I cannot believe that $84K guaranteed number and what I have now is just an illustration, and my FA is not being straightforward with me. Again, before I turn over the $750K won't there be a contract that specifies that amount and I can have a lawyer review it?
I know quotes are not guaranteed, but it should be at least close to what is put in the final contract, right?


6) Final comment takes me back to the original post, and I have not heard anyone respond to this directly. I ran two scenarios for my 30 yr retirement plan (also attached). The annuity scenario "beats" the non-annuity scenario with projected return rates < 8%. It is only when I reach >=8% on my investments in the non-annuity scenario that it starts to "win" out. Most would agree that 8% is pretty high to bank on, right?

Again, thank you all. I will certainly ensure I understand this fully before making a decision.
 

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Won't it end up being a contract, a legal document?
Can't you ask for a copy of the contract in advance so you can review it and decide from that? I think they also have something called a "Statement of Understanding" that is supposed to have all the details.
 
Dunno why but I get ~67k on immediateannuities.com also. Not saying its a scam, don’t think anyone is lying but there is a disconnect somewhere. OP could try some of these calculators himself and see if the quotes are consistent or ask FA if not.
I am trying to use immediateannuites.com for the first time. Can you give me a bit on instruction on what you did to come up with the $67K?
 
You have to ask yourself what is actually guaranteed? If I sell you a guaranteed red car am I guaranteeing the car or the fact that it is red? It does say “hypothetical illustration” right on the schedule.
 
Note that even mild inflation over long periods of time kills the value of annuities and nominal bonds. The very best annuity is your social security since it is inflation adjusted, so don't even think of buying a private annuity until you've maximized that, try opensocialsecurity.com and scroll to the bottom and click on various combination of claim dates to see the impacts.

Although they only go out for 30 years, you can get inflation protection by buying a ladder of TIPS, see tipsladder.com. They currently yield over 2% above inflation.
Exchme, You are making too much sense. If you do not stop immediately I will have to add you to my list of dangerous radicals who infest this site. I haven’t added anybody for about a year, so I need to catch up. 😁

FWIW, I took SS at 70 and when the market took a dive in 2022, I slept well. I also own some of those 2%+inflation TIPS.
 
I get $67k on immediateannuities.com as well and that seems much more believable a result... IRR through age 83 is 5.96%

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OK, first thank you all. I was not convinced about the annuity which is why I came here in the first place. I fully understand the "no free lunch". But it is being suggested here that the word guaranteed with the income rider is not really the case, and I am trying to understand why. Won't it end up being a contract, a legal document?

A few more comments and questions after absorbing everything said:


1) First, we are talking about the F&G Safe Income Advantage FIA with an income rider providing a guaranteed minimum withdraw payment of $84K annually starting in 7 years ($750K investment paid right now). The $84K is a combination of an annuity for my wife ($500K) and me ($250K), joint survivorship on both. See the attached images of the illustrations I got.

2) F&G appears to be a solid company with an A- rating. Nationwide does offer a similar product called New Heights.

3) For my planning purposes, I only care about the guaranteed min withdraw payment. I know this is an index annuity and tied to the performance of some index (S&P), and there are caps and other numbers they can screw with, so I am in no way banking on getting more than the $84K, just not less.

4) I know this is not inflation adjusted, and I know that early withdraw penalties, surrender values, and the depletion of the account/contract value will not leave much of anything when both my wife and I pass. Sure, if we pass in our early 80's or sooner, we did not get our money's worth from this. But I am also trying to make sure my wife has this guaranteed income if I pass before her, hence the joint survivorship.

5) The general feedback from everyone seems to be: I cannot believe that $84K guaranteed number and what I have now is just an illustration, and my FA is not being straightforward with me. Again, before I turn over the $750K won't there be a contract that specifies that amount and I can have a lawyer review it?
I know quotes are not guaranteed, but it should be at least close to what is put in the final contract, right?

6) Final comment takes me back to the original post, and I have not heard anyone respond to this directly. I ran two scenarios for my 30 yr retirement plan (also attached). The annuity scenario "beats" the non-annuity scenario with projected return rates < 8%. It is only when I reach >=8% on my investments in the non-annuity scenario that it starts to "win" out. Most would agree that 8% is pretty high to bank on, right?

Again, thank you all. I will certainly ensure I understand this fully before making a decision.

Look at the bottom of the first illustration that you attached:
This is a hypothetical illustration only, not an offer or a contract. Please consult the annuity contact for details.
Just an educated guess, but what is guarranteed are the annuity rates... in other words, if you annuitize for life at 65 then you will get monthly payments of $x for life per $1,000 of account value. What is hypothetical is what the account value will be at age 65. So since the monthly benefit is dependent on the account value and the account value is hypothetical, then the monthly payments are also hypothetical.

Finally, you say:
... I know quotes are not guaranteed, but it should be at least close to what is put in the final contract, right? ...
No, it doesn't necaessarily mean that it will be close. And when you get screwed and object the insurer will say that they made it clear that the illustration was hypothetical so the fact that it turned out differently isn't their problem. If your lawyer is fluent in annuities then he will point this out to you.

The annuity scenario beats the non-annuity scenario because it is based on an overly optimistic assumptions as to growth of the account value from inception until annuitization.

If this annuity was the great solution that you seem to think that it is, don't you think many of the keen minds on this forum would have already piled into them? Read post #22 in this thread to get the voice of experience.
 
@tim0476, I am not an annuities expert like, for example, @PB4 but I will offer a few comments:

First, you are almost certainly in violation of a very important rule of business: Never fall in love with a deal. Falling in love leads quickly to confirmation bias (Confirmation bias - Wikipedia) and objectivity is out the window. WADR, your posts tend to be quite defensive. I suggest you re-read them with confirmation bias in mind.

"Won't it end up being a contract, a legal document?" Yes, a non-negotiable contract written by the seller.

" Again, before I turn over the $750K won't there be a contract that specifies that amount and I can have a lawyer review it?" There will be a prospectus that your attorney can review. Apparently you have to get this from the salesman as I cannot find it for download. I'll guess it runs at least 100 pages; a Thrivent annuity prospectus I looked at was 208 pages. If your attorney is not a specialist he may refer you to one. Figure $300-500/hour and just a few pages reviewed per hour. Get an estimate. And in the end the attorney will give you a list of cautions and warnings about what he found in the non-negotiable prospectus.

" ... tied to the performance of some index ... "From looking at the web site this seems to be another case where the bold print giveth and the fine print taketh away. Their examples use the "price performance" of their available indices, not the "total return." The difference is that the insurance company effectively takes and keeps all dividends and interest paid by the components of an index. This seems to be a fairly common scam with indexed annuities.

"I cannot believe that $84K guaranteed number and what I have now is just an illustration, and my FA is not being straightforward with me." Not to insult, but the notion that an FA selling a big annuity is being straight with the mark can only be described as quaint. Your FA is looking at a huge payday, maybe also a new boat. Try this: Ask him to provide you with a letter on company letterhead confirming that he has a fiduciary responsibility to you and disclosing the total compensation that he will receive if you take his recommendation.

Finally, your OP contains a false premise: That you only have two choices. You have a near infinite number of choices. To repeat: Never fall in love with a deal.
 
Yes, these used to be called equity indexed annuities until the SEC threatened to regulate them as an investment product and then to avoid SEC oversight the product morphed into "fixed index" annuities. Typically, the minimum guaranteed values start off at 90% of premium and grow at 3%. The account value grows based on an index like the S&P 500 index subject to a participation rate and annual cap

You are probably looking at an illustration and the illustrated values are not guaranteed. What you want to look at are the guaranteed values and then something in between the guaranteed values and the illustrated values.
pb4uski, I attached a snippet of what I was given and circled the values in the two illustrations. I these the guaranteed values you are talking about? One would think the quotes are pretty close to the values that will be in the contract if created soon. The FA is telling me this is guaranteed as part of the income rider. Someone here hinted the insurer can change that amount anytime they want. That seems strange.
 

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I am trying to use immediateannuites.com for the first time. Can you give me a bit on instruction on what you did to come up with the $67K?
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Result:
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So that’s 3715 for her annuity. The other one calculates to 1857 so a total of 5572.
 
OP, what index did you say was used for the illustrations?
 
Look at the bottom of the first illustration that you attached:

Just an educated guess, but what is guarranteed are the annuity rates... in other words, if you annuitize for life at 65 then you will get monthly payments of $x for life per $1,000 of account value. What is hypothetical is what the account value will be at age 65. So since the monthly benefit is dependent on the account value and the account value is hypothetical, then the monthly payments are also hypothetical.

Finally, you say:

No, it doesn't necaessarily mean that it will be close. And when you get screwed and object the insurer will say that they made it clear that the illustration was hypothetical so the fact that it turned out differently isn't their problem. If your lawyer is fluent in annuities then he will point this out to you.

The annuity scenario beats the non-annuity scenario because it is based on an overly optimistic assumptions as to growth of the account value from inception until annuitization.

If this annuity was the great solution that you seem to think that it is, don't you think many of the keen minds on this forum would have already piled into them? Read post #22 in this thread to get the voice of experience.
The monthly payments are NOT based on the account/contract value as you have stated. It is based on the income base that grows at 7% for the first 10 years, and the guaranteed withdraw % comes from that income base in the year you choose to start payments. The contract value is used for surrenders and also to pay the fee for the rider. The contract value "may" also grow if the index does well, to a certain amount, but most likely with caps and participation rates, it will go down, maybe to 0. If that does happen, then it does not impact the guaranteed payment. In the event the contract value is higher than the income base, which it will not be, the contract value will be used instead of the income base to determine the minimum payment. So, it is not hypothetical what the income base will be at age 65. The starting amount and the 7% compounded interest is guaranteed.

OK, so I think I explained that right. Now if what I just said is not correct, then my FA is definitely not being truthful with me. But this is also how I have read the illustration and brochure.
 
OP, what index did you say was used for the illustrations?
S&P 500. but remember I am hyper focused on this income rider and the guaranteed minimum payment as a percentage of the income base for my planning purposes. This is the amount I will get if the S&P is flat or even negative in a year. A good S&P year would just be gravy on top of the $84K
 
NO expert but i would only buy a MYGA or SPIA. If it says index i believe it can go Up or Down.
 
OP, just buy the annuity. All you are doing here is looking for people to tell you that it is the right decision and you are not getting that. Just make your FA's day.
 
Maybe what some are missing here is the difference between the account/contract value number and the income base, which is used as part of the add on income rider to calculate the guaranteed minimum payment. If the $84K projection was based on what the account value could be at age 65, then I would agree that is no guarantee at all and that stinks.

But it is based on the income base number, which is only used to calculate the monthly payment based on a % of the base in the year that I decide to start payments. The product says the income base will start at the investment value ($750K) and then grow 7.2% annually for 10 years. The % withdraw is on the value of that income base in the year in which I decide to take it, in this case year 7 or 8. The $84K has nothing to do with the contract value that can go up or down based on the index. The $84K is based on the income base, which, according to the product documentation, is guaranteed to grow by 7.2%. Now what I do need to check on is the minimum withdraw %. So, in year 7 the calculation would be (value of income base in year 7 * minimum withdraw %) to come up with the 84K. It is pretty clear the income base value is guaranteed, but if that minimum withdraw % can be changed, then that is the big problem I have been looking for.

Note, if for some reason the contract/account value is higher in YR7 then the income base, the contract value will be used to calculate the payment. I have been told that is very likely not going to be the case.

Does this make sense?
 
OP, just buy the annuity. All you are doing here is looking for people to tell you that it is the right decision and you are not getting that. Just make your FA's day.
Sorry, you are wrong with that assessment. Some things have been said that make me believe there is lack of understanding of this particular product (see my last post). And that lack of understanding may be on my part. I am just not there yet. Definitely not trying to simply get affirmation.
 
Someone posted that you can preview the contract but I think it is just a summary. That is a great suggestion and you also get a “free look” period to review the full blown contract with a right to cancel w/o penalty. From what others have posted these contracts are extremely complicated.
 
Welcome to the message board @tim0476, I have appreciated your calm responses and enjoyed reading the thread as I am pretty ignorant on annuities. I have rarely found any strong recommendations for annuities in any of the financial news I read, so always curious about those that end up using them and the reasons. For me (only) looking to get after-tax income until I can access retirement funds......I can't figure why I would buy an A- (or worse) rated product delivering around 6% (BEFORE tax, around 3.9% after for me) returns/ income with a lot of rules....when today I can buy A+ (or better) rated municipals delivering 4-4.5% returns (6.5%+ considering tax) with more change flexibility (can easily sell the bond). Granted, I am in a higher federal bracket right now in a high income tax state, so everyone's situation may be different.....anyhow good discussion.
 
The monthly payments are NOT based on the account/contract value as you have stated. It is based on the income base that grows at 7% for the first 10 years, and the guaranteed withdraw % comes from that income base in the year you choose to start payments. The contract value is used for surrenders and also to pay the fee for the rider. The contract value "may" also grow if the index does well, to a certain amount, but most likely with caps and participation rates, it will go down, maybe to 0. If that does happen, then it does not impact the guaranteed payment. In the event the contract value is higher than the income base, which it will not be, the contract value will be used instead of the income base to determine the minimum payment. So, it is not hypothetical what the income base will be at age 65. The starting amount and the 7% compounded interest is guaranteed.

OK, so I think I explained that right. Now if what I just said is not correct, then my FA is definitely not being truthful with me. But this is also how I have read the illustration and brochure.
The annuity rates are low and that is why they can dangle that attractive 7% increase in the income base.

First example for you, in 8 years at age 65 the income base of $436,012 will be converted to a life annuity that pays $28,123 a year. OTOH, today $436.012 would buy an immediate annuity on a 65 yo male in VA that would pay $33,672 a year. Or $250,000 premium paid today on a 58 yo male in VA where benefits start in 8 years would pay $28,356 a year for a plain vanilla deferred life annuity which is simpler but easier to understand.

Second example, in 9 years the income base is $934,809 and would be annuitized to pay $56,246 a year. OTOH, today $934,809 would by a joint life immediate annuity that would pay $66,456 a year. Or $500,000 premium paid today on a 58 yo male and in VA where benefits start in 8 years would pay $28,356 a year for a plain vanilla deferred life annuity which is simpler but easier to understand.

So you are getting 15% less in annuity benefits than today's SPIA pricing, which would be equivalent to the income base growing at 5.95% rather than 7% but then getting a market price for the annuity benefit.

Another big issue is whether the benefit of this is worth tying up $750k (25% of your total nestegg). That is a lot of the nestegg to lock up or have subject to surrender charges if it turns out that you end up needing access to that money.

Good luck to you.
 
TLDR: What will be your fatal mistakes if you buy this and regret it:

1. You believe the FA is telling you the truth. He (*) is telling you what you want to hear in order to get you to sign the contract.
2. You believe the contract will match what the FA is telling you. It won't.

Longer version:

OK, first thank you all. I was not convinced about the annuity which is why I came here in the first place. I fully understand the "no free lunch". But it is being suggested here that the word guaranteed with the income rider is not really the case, and I am trying to understand why. Won't it end up being a contract, a legal document?

One would think the quotes are pretty close to the values that will be in the contract if created soon. The FA is telling me this is guaranteed as part of the income rider. Someone here hinted the insurer can change that amount anytime they want. That seems strange.

(emphasis added in second quote)

You're getting played in exactly the same way my Dad did once. He lost $16K. Given the amounts you're talking about, you'll probably lose more than that but you may not notice.

Here's what's happening and going to happen:

1. You're meeting with an FA. He (*) is probably young, well dressed, nice, positive, and friendly. He listens to your concerns. He is providing you with nice crisp sheets of paper with nice printing and the numbers you want to see on them, with the word "guarantee" at the top. He's in a nice building and the company he works for has lots of money.

2. You're going to have extensive conversations with him about the "guarantee" and how it works. He's going to answer all those questions. You're going to feel reassured, because if he is still at the job after three months, it's because he learned how to successfully reassure people and resolve their objections. That's what good salespeople do.

3. You might ask to see the contract. The contract will be long and complicated with lots of legalese. You might ask a lawyer how much it would be to review the contract. The price from the lawyer will be offputting. You might try to read the contract yourself, but you'll give up after a few pages.

4. You'll decide, "Hey, I'm a smart guy, and the FA was so nice, and the company is strong. I'm sure the contract says essentially what the FA told me. There's no way the FA was lying through his teeth." You sign.

5. The FA was lying through his teeth. The insurance company performs exactly to the contract, which will not match the "guarantee" paper. The insurance company will point to the italics at the bottom of the illustration and the contract you signed. You have no recourse because you signed the contract, and in the contract there will be a clause saying that you agree that you had all the time in the world to read the contract, any questions you had were answered to your satisfaction, and you had ample opportunity to have your own lawyer review the contract on your behalf. All of which is true, none of which you will have relied on to protect yourself.

6. You may call the agencies that regulate the company and/or product. They will ask you, "Did the company breech the contract?" to which you will have to either say "No" or "I have no idea". Your complaint will go nowhere, because the government bureaucrats get paid their salary whether you get satisfaction or not, and the insurance company has performed to the contract.

My Dad was in Las Vegas once and paid $16K to a timeshare company because, among other things, the sales rep told him that he could use his 48 zillion rewards points to book a two week vacation for him and his girlfriend to Israel, and probably have points left over for a week in Hawaii. So he signed the contract.

The timeshare company, it turns out, did not even have any locations within 5,000 miles of Israel, and his points might get him a cup of coffee and two days in Hawaii in August but he'd have to buy his own plane tickets there and back.

Being all mad at the timeshare company and protective of my Dad and interested in getting him his money back, I contacted a lawyer friend. She pointed out, and we should have known, something called the "four corners" rule. That means that that the deal is whatever is written within the four corners of the paper that the contract is on. Anything the salesperson (or in your case, the FA) says is completely irrelevant. They can't be sued for lying even if they are. And they are lying to you.

Multiple people here, who have no incentive to sell you or not sell you, are telling you in various ways and in varying degrees of specificity how you are about to get screwed. You don't have a good explanation that makes sense how they can simultaneously provide you with a 7%+ risk free rate of return *and* pay their employees and for all their buildings at the same time that you think a 6% rate of return in the market is very risky. How can that be? You don't know, and if you ask the FA, he will lie to you.

My Dad sold the timeshare back to the timeshare company for something like $50 a few months later without ever using it once. I don't know if you can sell an annuity back to the company, but if you can I bet you lose money that way as well.

(*) (or she, throughout)
 
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S&P 500. but remember I am hyper focused on this income rider and the guaranteed minimum payment as a percentage of the income base for my planning purposes. This is the amount I will get if the S&P is flat or even negative in a year. A good S&P year would just be gravy on top of the $84K
Well, not exactly. One way they make money when they guarantee a minimum rate of return even in bad markets is that you don't get a full share of the market gain in good years. Note also that every payment is returning part of your principal, so if they promise you a minimum return of, say, 7%, part of that is your own money.

FWIW, I'm a retired property-casualty actuary so I have some familiarity with annuity concepts but certainly not expertise. Those things scare me. They have too many moving parts. You can get a Guaranteed Minimum Death Benefit, for example, if you die early but of course there's a charge for that. Is it reasonable? I suppose you could figure it out with a mortality table and an imputed rate of interest, but who wants to?

SecondCor521's post above had a lot of good, hard doses of reality.
 
TLDR: What will be your fatal mistakes if you buy this and regret it:

1. You believe the FA is telling you the truth. He (*) is telling you what you want to hear in order to get you to sign the contract.
2. You believe the contract will match what the FA is telling you. It won't.

Longer version:





(emphasis added in second quote)

You're getting played in exactly the same way my Dad did once. He lost $16K. Given the amounts you're talking about, you'll probably lose more than that but you may not notice.

Here's what's happening and going to happen:

1. You're meeting with an FA. He (*) is probably young, well dressed, nice, positive, and friendly. He listens to your concerns. He is providing you with nice crisp sheets of paper with nice printing and the numbers you want to see on them, with the word "guarantee" at the top. He's in a nice building and the company he works for has lots of money.

2. You're going to have extensive conversations with him about the "guarantee" and how it works. He's going to answer all those questions. You're going to feel reassured, because if he is still at the job after three months, it's because he learned how to successfully reassure people and resolve their objections. That's what good salespeople do.

3. You might ask to see the contract. The contract will be long and complicated with lots of legalese. You might ask a lawyer how much it would be to review the contract. The price from the lawyer will be offputting. You might try to read the contract yourself, but you'll give up after a few pages.

4. You'll decide, "Hey, I'm a smart guy, and the FA was so nice, and the company is strong. I'm sure the contract says essentially what the FA told me. There's no way the FA was lying through his teeth." You sign.

5. The FA was lying through his teeth. The insurance company performs exactly to the contract, which will not match the "guarantee" paper. The insurance company will point to the italics at the bottom of the illustration and the contract you signed. You have no recourse because you signed the contract, and in the contract there will be a clause saying that you agree that you had all the time in the world to read the contract, any questions you had were answered to your satisfaction, and you had ample opportunity to have your own lawyer review the contract on your behalf. All of which is true, none of which you will have relied on to protect yourself.

6. You may call the agencies that regulate the company and/or product. They will ask you, "Did the company breech the contract?" to which you will have to either say "No" or "I have no idea". Your complaint will go nowhere, because the government bureaucrats get paid their salary whether you get satisfaction or not, and the insurance company has performed to the contract.

My Dad was in Las Vegas once and paid $16K to a timeshare company because, among other things, the sales rep told him that he could use his 48 zillion rewards points to book a two week vacation for him and his girlfriend to Israel, and probably have points left over for a week in Hawaii. So he signed the contract.

The timeshare company, it turns out, did not even have any locations within 5,000 miles of Israel, and his points might get him a cup of coffee and two days in Hawaii in August but he'd have to buy his own plane tickets there and back.

Being all mad at the timeshare company and protective of my Dad and interested in getting him his money back, I contacted a lawyer friend. She pointed out, and we should have known, something called the "four corners" rule. That means that that the deal is whatever is written within the four corners of the paper that the contract is on. Anything the salesperson (or in your case, the FA) says is completely irrelevant. They can't be sued for lying even if they are. And they are lying to you.

Multiple people here, who have no incentive to sell you or not sell you, are telling you in various ways and in varying degrees of specificity how you are about to get screwed. You don't have a good explanation that makes sense how they can simultaneously provide you with a 7%+ risk free rate of return *and* pay their employees and for all their buildings at the same time that you think a 6% rate of return in the market is very risky. How can that be? You don't know, and if you ask the FA, he will lie to you.

My Dad sold the timeshare back to the timeshare company for something like $50 a few months later without ever using it once. I don't know if you can sell an annuity back to the company, but if you can I bet you lose money that way as well.

(*) (or she, throughout)
Thank you. Well said. Now how in the heck do I find a good, honest financial advisor? Almost everyone here believes this FA is not being straight with me. I have been to three so far and they all want to sell me an annuity like this (and they all fit your profile above!). I never considered paying someone a fee to manage my retirement for me, but there is too much at stake and I don't have the knowledge to do it. Plus, I would never sign up with an FA to manage the remaining 75% of my retirement savings if he is not being honest with me about the annuity.

How can I invest this $750K (25% of my portfolio) in something that will create some guaranteed income? Bonds are complicated for me, and I have a Total Bond Index Fund with horrible returns over the past 5 years since I opened it.,
 
Dunno why but I get ~67k on immediateannuities.com also. Not saying its a scam, don’t think anyone is lying but there is a disconnect somewhere. OP could try some of these calculators himself and see if the quotes are consistent or ask FA if not.
I think he said his annuity would start in 7 years.
 
How can I invest this $750K (25% of my portfolio) in something that will create some guaranteed income? Bonds are complicated for me, and I have a Total Bond Index Fund with horrible returns over the past 5 years since I opened it.,
DW and I each have a pension and SS, so we are not really in the market for annuities, but I've been reading this thread with some interest.

Have you read this classic thread here? We are entering a "Golden Period" for fixed income investing It was before your time.

Or, this one? A Golden Age for Fixed Income Investing - Provided you use TIPS

I got totally out of my bond funds in 2023, and got into individual bonds, CDs, and MM funds. I wish I had done it in 2022, but . . . live and learn.

My advice is to do nothing until you thoroughly understand what you are going to do.
 
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