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Annuities can generate a lifetime income stream while also increasing and protecting your retirement savings.

Annuities are financial products offered by insurance companies that provide a way to receive a reliable income stream during retirement, helping to supplement other sources of retirement income like pensions, Social Security, and retirement savings accounts.

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The four types of annuities are:

Fixed / Deferred Annuities

Features: Fixed annuities offer a guaranteed interest rate for a specified period, providing predictable payments.

Benefits: They offer a guaranteed minimum interest rate, regardless of market conditions, making them suitable for conservative investors seeking a steady income in retirement.

Immediate Annuities

Features: Immediate annuities begin making payments to the annuitant shortly after the initial investment, typically within one year.

Benefits: Provide immediate income and can turn a portion of your retirement savings into either income for life or for a set period of time. This makes them suitable for individuals who need income right away, such as retirees.

Variable Annuities

Features: Variable annuities allow investors to allocate their funds among various investment options, such as stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. The value of the annuity fluctuates based on market conditions. These annuities provide no safety when the market goes down and they charge fees.

Benefits: Variable annuities offer the potential for higher returns in comparison to fixed annuities, but they also come with greater investment risk. They are suitable for investors willing to take on market risk in exchange for the possibility of greater growth. They can provide an income stream if needed and a death benefit as well if you pay extra fees.

Indexed Annuities

Features: These annuities offer more flexible growth and income options. Indexed annuities offer returns tied to the performance of a stock market index, such as the S&P 500 for example. They typically provide a guaranteed minimum interest rate, along with the potential for higher returns based on the index’s performance.

Benefits: There are little to no fees and no loss to the overall account value when the market goes down. Indexed annuities offer a balance of market exposure and downside protection. They can provide the opportunity for greater returns than fixed annuities while still offering a level of principal protection.

These annuities offer the ability to convert a portion of your savings into a reliable income stream. Some provide flexibility in accessing assets both before and after income payments begin. Others focus solely on growth, offering tax deferral and conservative growth without the concern of fees or market fluctuations diminishing your account value.

Each type of annuity has its own features, benefits, and considerations. It’s essential to carefully evaluate your financial goals, risk tolerance, and income needs before choosing an annuity type.

If you currently own an annuity, a tax-free exchange to one of our affiliated companies could potentially enhance your retirement savings while reducing fees. In cases where penalties apply, there’s a possibility of finding an alternative company that better aligns with your needs, possibly offering a bonus to ensure you begin ahead of the curve with the transition.