According to researchers at The Ohio State University they found nothing beats good health and high income and the ability to get around. ”They found that these were the strongest factors in determining the psychological well-being of people aged 60 to 90–more important than neighborhood satisfaction and having close contact with friends, family, and neighbors.”
The four pillars are again: Good Health, Mobility, Socialization, Sustainable Income for Life. All of these are interdependent. Without mobility it makes it difficult to be social. Without sustainable income there are health strains and mental strains. Without good health do any of the others matter?
“The researchers say they were somewhat surprised that neighborhood satisfaction didn’t play a larger direct role in the well-being of the elderly.” The Society of Advancement of Education and the Gale Group have more at this hyperlink.
While it may be easy to identify what is good health, mobility and socialization it is often difficult to determine what is sustainable income for life. Sustainable means long-term and consistent or not risky. Count on it as one would a pension or conservative investments. If you want the word guaranteed attached it means you will be looking for an insured retirement solution. Insured mean insurance not risky investments that over long periods may have produced. Many of the asset allocation strategies are challenged and strained by the extraction of assets on periodic basis. Simply put taking a cash flow when investment values are down is hazardous to your financial health. If you just want the highest guaranteed cash flow then a single premium immediate annuity is most logical choice. If you wish to create some control then look elsewhere. If you are considering an indexed annuity you want to find out if you will be credited with gains during the year. Why? because stuff happens and most retirees have either monthly income needs or RMD (Required Minimum Distribution) the amount the IRS requires when you are over age 70 and half and have qualified money aka IRA.