Should a 65-Year-Old Buy an Annuity?

Are you 65 years old and considering an annuity as part of your retirement strategy? This is a pivotal decision that could significantly impact your financial future.

In this article, we will explore the factors affecting annuity suitability for 65-year-olds, discuss different types of annuities, and provide strategies to maximize your annuity benefits.


  • At 65, consider retirement income needs, health and life expectancy when evaluating the suitability of a longevity annuity.
  • Various types of annuities are available. Consult with a retirement planner who can show you all the types of annuities to make the best decision.
  • Working with an experienced retirement planner is essential to maximize benefits from an annuity at age 65.

Need help choosing the best annuity for your unique situation? If so, it’s best to speak with an annuity specialist. Watch this short video to see how I can help you do this (at no cost to you!).

Is an annuity right for you at age 65?

Annuities are financial products that promise a steady income to buyers in exchange for a lump sum or periodic payments.

This income is assured by an insurer. They can be an attractive option for those looking to secure retirement income, but their suitability depends on various factors, such as:

  • Your retirement income needs
  • Health
  • Life expectancy
  • Other financial considerations

Your personal circumstances play a key role in deciding whether to buy an annuity. While there is no specific age restriction for purchasing an annuity, most annuity purchasers are between the ages of 40 and 80.

Keep in mind that only you can determine if an annuity is the right choice for your retirement planning needs.

Retirement Income Needs

Living expenses, healthcare costs, and your desired lifestyle are significant factors when determining your retirement income needs.

The average annual expenditure for retirees in the U.S. is $52,141, or roughly $4,345 per month, and a retired couple age 65 may require approximately $315,000 to cover healthcare costs in retirement.

The amount of a monthly income annuity payout is based on several factors, including:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Interest rates
  • The amount of capital invested

It is important to understand these elements when selecting an annuity option that will best meet your needs.

The later you choose to annuitize your capital, the greater your monthly payment will be. Collaborating with an annuity advisor can aid in analyzing your income needs and determining if an immediate or deferred income annuity best fits your retirement planning.

Health and Life Expectancy

Deciding the suitability of an annuity for you heavily relies on your health and family history of longevity. On average, a 65-year-old in the United States can expect to live an additional 17 years for men and 19.8 years for women.

If you have good health and a family history of longevity, an annuity offering a lifetime income may be more appealing and valuable to you.

Longevity annuities, such as a qualified longevity annuity contract, provide a consistent source of income during retirement and continue to pay even if the annuitant survives past their life expectancy age.

Consult with an annuity expert to help you determine if a longevity annuity is the right choice based on your health and life expectancy.

Other Financial Considerations

Other financial assets, such as pensions, Social Security, and investments, should also be evaluated along with your income needs and life expectancy. These factors can significantly impact your decision to purchase an annuity.

Consider working with a professional who can help you assess your overall financial situation and determine if an annuity is necessary for a comprehensive and balanced retirement plan.

Types of Annuities for 65-Year-Olds

For 65-year-olds, there are various types of annuities available, including:

Each type offers different benefits and levels of risk, catering to different investment preferences and goals.

Before making a decision, gaining a clear understanding of the features and potential risks associated with each type of annuity is vital.

Consulting with a certified annuity advisor can help you evaluate your options and make an informed decision about which type of annuity is most suitable for your retirement savings and income needs.

Immediate Annuities

Immediate annuities offer a guaranteed income stream commencing shortly after purchase, making them advantageous for those desiring financial security in retirement. Here’s how they work:

  1. Provide a lump sum to an insurance company with a single-premium immediate annuity.
  2. Receive a fixed amount of guaranteed income for the duration of your life in return.
  3. The payout of an immediate annuity is determined mainly by age, gender, and interest rates at the time of purchase.

Immediate annuities, including fixed annuity and variable annuity options, can be a valuable choice for those seeking a guaranteed monthly income in their retirement years.

Deferred Annuities

Deferred annuities are a form of deferred annuity that permits the individual to invest a lump sum presently and obtain payouts at a subsequent time, typically after retirement.

Insurers provide more on a monthly basis in comparison to annuities that commence earlier in life, making deferred annuities suitable for those with time before needing retirement income.

Deferred annuities can be an attractive option for individuals who wish to benefit from tax-deferred growth and lower fees associated with annuities.

Fixed, Variable, and Fixed Index Annuities

Fixed, variable, and fixed index annuities offer varying levels of risk and return, catering to different investment preferences and goals.

Fixed annuities guarantee a predetermined interest rate, while variable annuities’ interest rate varies according to the performance of the owner’s investment portfolio. A fixed index annuity occupies a middle ground in terms of risk and return, with an upper and a lower limit for gains and losses.

Your risk tolerance and financial goals are crucial considerations when deciding between fixed, variable, and fixed index annuities. Here are the key characteristics of each type:

  1. Fixed annuities: Suitable for conservative investors seeking a stable return.
  2. Variable annuities: More appropriate for those who are willing to accept a higher degree of risk for potentially greater returns.
  3. Fixed index annuities: Offer a balance between risk and return, appealing to investors who want some exposure to market gains without sacrificing the security of a guaranteed minimum return.

Strategies for Maximizing Annuity Benefits at Age 65

Strategies such as tax-deferred growth, spousal benefits, and inflation protection are essential to leverage in order to maximize annuity benefits at age 65.

These approaches can help ensure that you make the most of your annuity investment, providing you with a secure income stream during your retirement.

Tax-Deferred Growth

Utilizing tax-deferred growth in deferred annuities can be a powerful strategy for accumulating wealth and minimizing taxes before retirement.

Tax-deferred growth allows the interest earned on the annuity to accumulate without being subject to taxation until a withdrawal is executed. This can lead to a more rapid accumulation of funds and potentially greater wealth in the long run.

However, it’s essential to be aware of the risks associated with tax-deferred growth, such as being liable for a higher tax rate upon withdrawal or facing a penalty for early withdrawal.

Spousal Benefits

Spousal benefits can be an essential aspect of maximizing annuity benefits at age 65. By selecting a joint-and-survivor annuity, both spouses can receive periodic payments until the passing of the last surviving spouse, guaranteeing financial stability for both parties.

This approach enables couples to coordinate their claiming strategies and generate the most significant possible survivor benefit.

Consult with a trusted advisor to help you determine if incorporating spousal benefits in your annuity is the right choice for your retirement planning.

Inflation Protection

Inflation protection is a crucial strategy for safeguarding your annuity income from the adverse impacts of rising costs of goods and services.

One approach is to incorporate cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) in your annuity, which adjust your income payments based on fluctuations in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) annually.

Another option is to invest in inflation-indexed annuities, which provide income payments that increase with inflation.

By implementing inflation protection strategies, you can maintain your purchasing power and ensure that your income remains consistent with the rising cost of living.

Working with a Trusted Advisor

Navigating the complexities of annuities and retirement planning can be made easier with the invaluable guidance and support of an advisor.

They can help you evaluate your financial situation, goals, and risk tolerance, and determine if an annuity is the right choice for your retirement plan.

By consulting with an annuity expert, you can make educated decisions regarding your annuity investments, ensuring a safe and secure retirement income strategy that meets your unique financial goals and needs.

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Deciding whether to buy an annuity at age 65 is a critical decision that can significantly impact your financial future.

By considering factors such as your retirement income needs, health, life expectancy, and other financial assets, you can determine if an annuity is the right choice for your retirement plan.

Explore different types of annuities, evaluate annuity providers based on their financial strength, fees and expenses, and customer service, and work closely with a trusted advisor to make informed decisions.

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