Once you reach the age of 55 you will begin to think about how best to make your retirement savings last for as long as you will need them. This is a difficult proposition, and there are many options that are available to you. About six months before you retire you will be sent an information package by your current insurance company. In this package will be information about the annuities that they have to offer. However, it is in your best interests to compare annuity rates.
If you are even considering taking out an annuity then the worst thing you can do is take the first annuity offer that you get; you absolutely have to compare annuity rates. The first reason is that once you have bought an annuity you cannot get your money back, and the second reason is that if you are going to try to take care of yourself financially for as long as possible you will have to find the best annuity rate to get you through the rest of your life. This is why you have to compare annuity rates.
But what is the best way to compare annuity rates? A good place to start is with annuity calculators. Most annuity providers have these on their websites and with a bit of personal information they can give you an idea of the kind of annuity rate that you can expect from them. These quotes are not guarantees, only a guide. So the next step to compare the best annuity rates is to get an actual quote from the annuity provider. There is also another way to compare annuity rates and that is to go to independent annuity observers like the FSA and have a look at their rates.
By deciding to compare annuity rates in this way you will have an idea of all the annuity rates that are available and what the various annuity providers have on offer. Each annuity provider will have something slightly different to offer and slightly different annuity rates and of course you will want and need the best annuity rate, and annuity package that you can find. Shopping around and making the effort to compare annuity rates is not a waste of time, it is preparing for your future. So take the time and go through the various steps until you find an annuity rate that works best for you.