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Do you have a variable annuity and are you looking for alternatives to it? Not sure about what options might make sense for your situation?
Many people buy annuities for different retirement goals, but variable annuities tend to be bought more than other types of annuities. However, this is likely to change in the near future. What is driving this shift is that people are on the lookout for alternatives to variable annuities.
Why? Variable annuities offer the most growth potential of all annuities. But they also have the most exposure to market risk.
What’s more, while this isn't universally true for all of them, many variable annuities are also fee-heavy and expense-heavy.
According to the SEC, just one annual charge for life insurers managing longevity risk – called a mortality and expense charge – can add up to 1.25% per year in variable annuity contracts. Other research by groups like Morningstar has also found that cumulative fees and expenses in a variable annuity can be in excess of 3 percent.
Depending on their needs, people may be interested in alternatives ranging from annuity contracts with less market risk to financial vehicles that aren’t even annuities at all.
Where do you find independent annuity advice that you can trust? Just mention the topic of annuities, and you certainly won’t have any shortage of opinions coming out of the woodshed.
Many financial advisors and pundits are in the pro-annuity camp due to the strong contractual guarantees that only annuities give. On the other hand, annuity naysayers point to a few things, such as sometimes overly aggressive sales pitches, to make their case of annuity pessimism.
So, how can you find independent annuity advice that is somewhere in the middle: objective, honest, and focused on helping you become educated and make a well-informed decision? A good source will give you, among other things:
In other words, a credible source of annuity information will be upfront and clear about what annuity contracts can achieve – and also not accomplish – for you.
"I recommend Mike Marrone, and Marrone Financial, for their professionalism, financial experience, and knowledge of the retirement planning space. Mike is exemplary in his dedication to consumer education and in helping his clients find solutions that fit their complete financial picture."Brent Meyer Jr., Founder of SafeMoney.com