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How does it work when you look at annuitizing the assets in retirement accounts?

If you go to IRS Publication 590, the one on IRAs, you will find they have a section on annuitizing an IRA. In IRA lingo that is the official name of the 72t or SEPP distribution plan that allows you to begin taking penalty free distributions from your IRA before age 59-1/2. The rules require that once the distributions begin, you must continue them for the longer of 5 yrs or until age 59-1/2. If you fail to do so, all previous distributions are subject to penalty.

As for funds that are not in a tax preference account, you can buy an immediate fixed annuity any time you want from any insurance company or numerous banks, brokers, or financial advisers. What's the problem?

Annuities are usually considered expensive and are not for everyone, but they can provide regular dependable payments for life if you want. That can be a good way to cover basic living expenses. We have an Annuities discussion board in Fooldom where these are discussed.

You get a better deal when interest rates are higher. Now is not a good time to buy one. You usually want a minimum payment period to cover getting run over by a bus the following week. You usually want to cover payments to your surviving spouse. They usually pay fixed amounts, making them not good for inflation protection. But you can get them that gradually increase payments. Or you can buy a small one now. Keep most assets in equities for growth and buy additional ones later to increase your payments.
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