Annuity Periods

Shawn Plummer

CEO, The Annuity Expert

What Are The Types of annuity periods

Accumulation Period:

  • What it is: The accumulation period is the time during which you make contributions to your annuity. Your funds are “accumulating” during this phase, which lasts until you start receiving payments.
  • Why it’s important: This period allows your investment to grow, often tax-deferred, increasing the eventual payments you’ll receive. The length and contributions during the accumulation period significantly impact the annuity’s value.
Annuity Periods

Surrender Period:

  • What it is: The surrender period is a predetermined amount of time during which you must keep your money in the annuity before making any withdrawals without facing a surrender charge.
  • Why it’s important: Withdrawing funds before the end of the surrender period can result in substantial penalties. Understanding this period helps you plan your finances and avoid unexpected costs.
What Is An Annuity Period

Free Look Period:

  • What it is: The free look period is a short window after your annuity purchase, during which you can cancel the contract without penalties or fees.
  • Why it’s important: This period offers you a chance to review the annuity contract, ensuring it meets your needs and expectations. If you have second thoughts, this is the time to make changes without financial consequences.

Renewal Period:

  • What it is: The renewal period applies to certain types of annuities that have a fixed term. When that term ends, the annuity enters a renewal period, during which you can make changes to the terms and conditions or renew the annuity under new terms.
  • Why it’s important: This period provides flexibility, allowing you to adjust your investment strategies based on current market conditions or your financial situation.

Annuitization Period:

  • What it is: The annuitization period, often referred to simply as the “annuity period,” is when the plan starts paying out. You’ll receive regular income payments during this phase, which can last for a specific number of years or the rest of your life, depending on your contract.
  • Why it’s important: This is the phase that provides the financial security and steady income stream that many purchasers seek in an annuity. Understanding the terms can help ensure that the payouts meet your retirement needs.


In conclusion, when considering an annuity, it’s crucial to understand these different periods and how they impact your investment and payout. Each period serves specific purposes and offers certain advantages. By comprehensively understanding these phases, you can better plan your financial future and make the most of what annuities have to offer. Always consider consulting with a financial advisor to help navigate these periods effectively.

Annuity Period

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Shawn Plummer

CEO, The Annuity Expert

Shawn Plummer is a licensed financial professional, insurance agent, and annuity broker with over 14 years of first-hand experience with annuities and insurance. Since beginning his journey in 2009, he has been pivotal in selling and educating about annuities and insurance products. Still, he has also played an instrumental role in training financial advisors for a prestigious Fortune Global 500 insurance company, Allianz. His insights and expertise have made him a sought-after voice in the industry, leading to features in renowned publications such as Time Magazine, Bloomberg, Entrepreneur, Yahoo! Finance, MSN, SmartAsset, The Simple Dollar, U.S. News and World Report, Women’s Health Magazine, and many more. Shawn’s driving ambition? To simplify retirement planning, he ensures his clients understand their choices and secure the best insurance coverage at unbeatable rates.

The Annuity Expert is an independent online insurance agency servicing consumers across the United States. The goal is to help you take the guesswork out of retirement planning and find the best insurance coverage at the cheapest rates

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