Variable Annuities and Seniors: A Good Mix?

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Recently, we reached out to seniors to get their thoughts on variable annuities. We wanted to know their thoughts on the products, but something else emerged from the discussion: They really don’t know much about them.

“I’ve heard the term before but to tell you the truth I don’t really know anything about them. I have a financial advisor who brought them up to me one time but they seemed so dang complicated. I asked him to slow down and then I asked him to go on to the next investment option. I have my money tied up in real estate mostly, and for now I’m going to keep it there because I don’t want to put it in a bank these days either.

Larry, 66

Dallas

“Too risky for me. I had money tied to the stock market in 2008 and lost my shirt. I don’t know very much about variable annuities but I do know enough to know there’s too much risk involved. I don’t have a ton of money to throw around in the first place. I’m disabled from my job and personally I worry a whole lot more these days about health care and how I’m going to pay for the care I’m going to need. I’m scared to death about the health care situation right now.”

Jason, 62

Brooklyn, N.Y.

“I don’t know much about them. My advisor is more about ETFs. We talked about variable annuities during our annual visit. He looked at my accounts and showed me a diagram about what would happen with my money in the stock market versus a regular annuity versus a variable annuity. At the end of the day I liked where my money would go in the regular annuity.”

Greg, 60

Denver

“I don’t think so. My wife and I have our money invested in our house and we have a rental property as well. We invested in that with our two kids and have done fairly well with it. As far as financial investments, our family is not really in the market for that. ”

James, 70

St. Cloud, Minn.

Tell us: Do your clients feel the same way about variable annuities?

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About the Author
Daniel Williams

Daniel Williams

Daniel Williams, Editor-in-Chief of the new Retirement Advisor magazine (formerly Senior Market Advisor) and Annuities Channel Editor for LifeHealthPro.com, is an award-winning journalist and business editor with extensive experience in print, online and trade shows. Prior to joining Senior Market Advisor, Daniel was editor of Real Estate Southern California magazine and West Coast South Bureau Chief of GlobeSt.com, both are divisions of Real Estate Media. Previously, he covered the commercial real estate beat for the Orange County Business Journal. While there, he received a certificate of merit from SABEW (the Society of American Business Editors and Writers Inc.) for a story on "OCs Cash Economy." A native of the Deep South, Daniel relocated from Los Angeles to Denver with his wife and daughter and can be reached at dwilliams@SummitProNets.com or on Twitter @LHPro_Annuities.

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