The basic definition of an annuity is a fixed sum of money that is paid to a person each year generally for the rest of that person's life. Making the best choice with your annuity depends on the type of annuity.
This is when you take a single lump sum of cash to convert into a steady stream of income. Though it's called 'immediate' the payout or 'distribution period' begins 12 months later.
This is when you pay a series of premiums in an accumulation period to get to some defined sum. Your payout or "distribution period" is deferred until a later date of your choosing.
These two overarching categories encompass hundreds of different annuity options.
You can learn more about the different types of annuities here:
We've narrowed down some of the more common reasons people decide to sell an annuity below: