An annuity is a contract between you and an insurance company that requires the insurer to make payments to you, either immediately or in the future. You buy an annuity by making either a single payment or a series of payments. Similarly, your payout may come either as one lump-sum payment or as a series of payments over time.
People typically buy annuities to help manage their income in retirement. Annuities provide three things:
There are three basic types of annuities, fixed, variable and indexed. Here is how they work:
You will pay several charges when you invest in a variable annuity. Be sure you understand all charges before you invest. Besides surrender charges, there are a number of other charges, including:
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