We took some of our T-bills, cashed them out and bought an annuity five or six years ago. What we liked about it was that it was fixed, and we got a pretty good rate then, before interest rates were cut. I don’t think we’d be able to get that much now, so we feel really lucky. The representative we got it from told us it was a smart move, but I don’t think even he knew quite how smart it was.
-Nan, 74, Newport, Ark.

Final-expense insurance. We were looking at some plans online, and we found one that did what we were after. Nothing fancy, just coverage for our funerals and burial plot. We just thought it would be nice to have that taken care of, so that our kids wouldn’t have to worry about it.
-Hilda, 69, Georgetown, Texas

We just bought an annuity with some of our money in stocks. We liked that because we figured how much worse can the stock market get? It’s going to rebound at some point, and then we can benefit from those returns–or at least that’s how the thinking goes. I think we’re protected against it going down, which is important once you get to retirement age. But we have other investments–we are pretty conservative with our money. We bought it mostly to pass on to our kids.
-Janice, 75, Port Saint Lucie, Fla.

Well, I guess that would be our long-term care policies. We both had parents who died of Alzheimer’s–and in my mother-in-law’s case, she lived a long, long time in a home–so it seemed like the sensible thing to do. No one wants their fortune to be squandered by an illness like that. We mentioned to our accountant that we were interested in something like that, and he referred us to a guy who helped us pick out a good policy.
-Ed, 70, Concord, N.H.