What will be covered in this review of the RiverSource Life Value Plus Bonus Annuity?In this review, we will be discussing the following details regarding the Value Plus Bonus Annuity from RiverSource Life:
- How the annuity works
- Realistic performance expectations
- Current rates
- Charges and fees
- Where it is best used
- Where it is most poorly used
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If you’ve been worried about your nest egg dwindling because of market volatility and panic, there are ways that you can shield your money – and your stress level – from whatever happens with stock prices. One strategy is by purchasing a fixed annuity like the Value Plus . These financial vehicles come with a long list of guarantees – including a set return, as well as a guaranteed income stream that you can count on for the remainder of your lifetime, regardless of how long that turns out to be. But before you move forward with purchasing this – or any other annuity, for that matter – it can be extremely beneficial for you to first get a much more in-depth understanding of exactly how the annuity works, and how it may or may not necessarily work for you and your specific financial goals. Over the past several years, fixed annuities have become quite popular. This is particularly the case with those who lost some (or all) of their retirement savings in the market downturn of 2008 and/or the Coronavirus panic, and are now seeking safety for their principal. A fixed annuity can also offer you a guaranteed lifetime income stream, which is nice because people are living longer these days, and it can be difficult to make your savings stretch for a multitude of years. But, because annuities have grown so much in popularity, there has also been an increase in the number of insurance and financial advisors who are offering them. Unfortunately, these agents may not always be giving you the very best answers to the questions that you may have, but that you need to know in order to make a well-informed decision. Also, due in large part to the increased desire for annuities, the selection of annuity products has grown significantly. Yet, while this variety of options can certainly help you to “customize” the products to better fit your specific needs, it can also make annuities even more confusing, even for well-informed consumers. Given that, there are some recommended steps that you should consider that can help you in truly understanding what it is that you might be purchasing – especially as an annuity could realistically make up a large portion of your overall retirement income down the road. Also, since annuities can be pretty hard to get out of once you have gotten into one, it is important that you know why you are going with one an annuity over another, as well as why you are even going with an annuity at all.
Annuity and Retirement Income Planning Information That You Can TrustIf this is the first time you’ve visited our website, we would like to personally welcome you here to AnnuityGator.com. We are a team of experienced financial professionals who are dedicated to providing non-biased and in-depth reviews of annuity products. There are literally hundreds of reviews available in our annuity review database on our site. We’ve been doing this for a number of years now – far longer than most of our “copycat” competitors – and because of this, we have come to be known as a highly trusted source of annuity information. Yes, there are lots of other sites out there that also provide annuity reviews. But be careful! Just like annuities, no two websites are the same. Oftentimes, online companies just want to get your contact information so they can inundate you with endless emails about the annuities they sell. If you’ve been seeking information about annuities online, it is likely that you have come across many conflicting details about these financial vehicles. This isn’t really very surprising, though, because there are a lot of opinions (both positive and otherwise) about these products floating around the Internet. You may also have recently attended a seminar about annuity products. During this workshop, the presenter may have touted information about the RiverSource Life Value Plus Bonus Annuity, or some other similar financial vehicle. Your attendance at that seminar or evens could even have been the catalyst that brought you here to our website in search of additional details. Even though there are many very good websites on the Internet that are focused on offering their annuity products, there are some that will attempt to lure you in with some pretty bold claims like:
- Lowest fees
- Highest income payouts
- Guaranteed lifetime income
- Top-rated companies
RiverSource Life Value Plus Bonus Annuity at a Glance
|Product Name||Value Plus Bonus Annuity|
|Issuer||RiverSource Life Insurance Company|
|Type of Product||Fixed Annuity|
|A.M. Best Rating||A+ (Superior)|
|Phone Number||(800) 333-3437|
Opening Thoughts on the RiverSource Life Value Plus Bonus AnnuityThe beginnings of RiverSource Life Insurance Company stem back to the late 1800s when 24-year-old John Tappan founded Investors Syndicate in 1894. The company has withstood the test of time, as well as numerous financial crises in the United States. Today, RiverSource offers a nice selection of life insurance and annuities. Its annuity offerings include fixed and variable, as well as immediate annuities whereby a set amount of income can start being received right away (or very soon after an individual makes a deposit). RiverSource was ranked number one in client satisfaction among all annuity providers in 2019 by J.D. Power. Also for 2019, RiverSource attained various recognition and accolades, including being 6th in variable universal life insurance premiums (based on LIMRA’s U.S. Retail Individual Life Insurance Sales Report), 9th largest provider of variable annuity sales (also based on LIMRA’s U.S. Retail Individual Life Insurance Sales Report), and 10th in individual disability income sales (based on non-cancelable individual policies) per LIMRA International’s 1st quarter 2019 U.S. Individual Disability Income Sales. The company also has high ratings from the insurer rating agencies, including a(n):
- Aa3 (Excellent) from Moody’s Investor Service
- A+ (Superior) from A.M. Best
- AA- from Standard & Poor’s
- 95 (out of 100) by Comdex
Before we get into the gritty details, here are some necessary legal disclosures…This is an independent annuity product review. It is not a recommendation to purchase or to sell an annuity. RiverSource Life has not endorsed this review in any way, nor do we receive any type of compensation for providing this review. This annuity review is meant solely to be an independent review at the request of our readers so that they may see our perspective when breaking down the positives and the negatives of this particular annuity. Before purchasing any type of insurance and/or investment product, it is important that you do your own due diligence, and that you consult a properly licensed professional if you should have any specific questions that relate to your individual situation. All of the names, marks, and materials that were used for this annuity review are the property of their respective owners. For more information on how to compare annuities in order to determine which one may be the best for you and your financial circumstances, click here to obtain our free annuity report.
How RiverSource Describes the Value Plus Bonus AnnuityRiverSource describes their fixed annuity products as financial vehicles that offer the stability of a reliable return without the risk of market fluctuation while you’re accumulating for retirement, as well as a way to protect assets. This annuity is offered through Ameriprise Financial, which touts the many benefits of fixed annuities including a predictable income in retirement, guaranteed principal and rate of return, and tax-deferred growth of both the principal and interest. In this case, there are actually a number of guarantees, such as:
- Guaranteed principal in any type of market
- Guaranteed returns, due to the guaranteed minimum interest rate
How an Insurance or Financial Advisor Might “Pitch” this AnnuityWith many investors today still shying away from the volatile stock market (particularly those who are approaching retirement), it is likely that if you’ve been presented this particular annuity by a financial or insurance advisor, he or she keyed in on the guaranteed features. Given that, you can be assured that your money will be safe from choppy market conditions. However, even with the nice, safe element that surrounds this annuity, it is possible that your money could still quite frankly be at risk in other ways. For instance, because of the low-interest-rate environment that we have been in for roughly a decade now, it is likely that the rate of guaranteed interest you receive may not be enough to beat – or even to meet – future inflation. This being the case, you could end up losing purchasing power in the future, when you need to rely on your investment income the most. It is important to be careful, especially if you are being presented this – or any – annuity by an advisor who will earn a commission on the sale. That’s because they may lean much more towards presenting you with all of the rosy, positive features, yet leave out the features that may be considered as drawbacks. So, unless you are completely convinced that the RiverSource Value Plus Bonus annuity product is the one for you, please feel free to reach out to us with any additional questions that you may have.
What About Charges and Fees on this RiverSource Fixed Annuity?In addition to the painfully low-interest rate that you are likely to receive with the RiverSource Life Value Plus Bonus annuity, you could also be hindered from withdrawing funds from this product during the surrender period. On top of that, if you make such withdrawals before you have reached the age of 59 1/2, then you will also likely incur an additional 10% early withdrawal penalty from the IRS.
The Annuity Gator’s End Take on the RiverSource Life Value Plus Bonus Annuity Where this annuity works best:This particular annuity will usually work the best for those who are looking for:
- Protection of principal in any type of market environment
- A guaranteed rate of interest (at least for a set period of time)
- Guaranteed lifetime income in the future
Where this annuity may not be a good fit:Alternatively, this annuity may not fare so well for those who:
- Want the opportunity for a higher rate of return on their money
- Want to access more than just 10% of the contract value during the surrender charge period
- Do not plan on using the lifetime income feature