Buying an annuity is linked with a persons age. When the investor is young the expectations are more. Since the investor is employed or running own business, the risk factors take a secondary position. However, when a person is about to retire, the earnings become as vital as the principal. The retirement annuity is quite ideal for those investors who are about to end an active working life. Since they cant look forward to paychecks every month, the need for a secure and assured earning arises. The retirement annuity form of investment fills this gap.

To buy a retirement annuity, a one time investment or payment of policy amount in lump sum is required. The distributions range from a month to one year, based on the financial company offering retirement annuity. The earnings again depend on the type of retirement annuity purchased.

Generally, there are two types of retirement annuity offered in the market, quite like the deferred annuities. It includes fixed retirement annuity and variable retirement annuity. As the name itself suggests, the fixed retirement annuity offers fixed income payments based on the amount invested and prevailing interest rate at the time of buying the annuity. The variable retirement annuity offers varying returns based on the prevailing market conditions.

In most of the cases, retirement annuity typically serves the income needs while in retirement. However, they can also be directed to perform other purposes too. It can serve as a source of income to recipients of the investor and specific funding which includes education, alimony and other expenses.

There are a number of private companies offering retirement annuity. Hence it is important to ascertain their credibility ratings before making any investments. The fees charged by these companies come second on things to watch out for. Similarly its advisable to understand the surrender charges and withdrawal options as set by financial companies.