Are Annuities a Good Investment? The Good, Bad, and Real Ugly


You may have heard investment advisors – or insurance advisors – talk about them in the past. In fact, earlier I described several reasons you should and shouldn’t buy annuities.

If you catch me on the street and ask if annuities are a good investment, I’d tell you the short answer is that it depends.

If you press me further, I’d tell you that most of the time they aren’t a good investment.

If you demand clarification, I’d probably just shoot you a link to this article – unless you’d like to take me to In-N-Out Burger and pick up the tab. 😉

are annuities a good investment

Here, I’m going to define annuities, show you why some people buy them, present two particular types of annuities, and show you a few alternatives you might like.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me! Let’s get started.
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15 Ways to Invest $10,000

Do you remember the first time you wrote a check for $100?

The first $100 check I wrote was for my cell phone waaayyy back in 1997.  Whoa….that brings back memories.

What about your first, $1,000 check? Even better, your first $10,000 check?

The first time I wrote a check for $10,000 was to pay off my student loan debt.  That was, by far, the best check I ever wrote!

It’s not too often that you have an extra $10,000 lying around, but if you did it would definitely be a good problem to have.  :)

But the answer as to what to do with the money isn’t always clear. Allow me to suggest a few ways to invest it – like 15 of them.  Here’s 15 ways to invest $10,000.

best way to invest 10000 dollars
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What the Heck is a Hedge Fund?

Am I the only that thinks of Sonic the Hedgehog when I hear the term “hedge fund”?

Sonic the Hedge Fund

Hedge funds are the mystery players in the investment universe. We hear a lot about them, but few of us ever have any regular interaction with them, and we certainly don’t invest money with them. We assume that the only people who do are the big money people, like Georg Soros and Warren Buffet.
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11 Ways to Invest $100,000 with Confidence

A cool $100,000 hits your checking account. Good day.

Before you go bananas and buy a Tesla with automatic lane-changing capabilities, please take a deep breath – for my sake. The last thing I want to see you do is blow all your money on sports cars or bad investments.

how to invest $100000

Whether I’m investing $100,000 or $1,000,000, there are a few steps I would follow first. You can read more about those steps in my article on how to invest a million dollars.

That article is more about what to do with a large sum of money (like paying off debt and building an emergency fund) – this one will help you learn about a number of investments, investment methods, and investment tools that will lower your risk.

So grab your $100K and invest with confidence!

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Grow Your Dough Throwdown 2.0

It’s back…..

Just when you thought the Grow Your Dough Throwdown was done, we’re back for another year.

Ahhh yeah….

It’s time for Grow Your Dough Throwdown 2.0.

Grow Your Dough Throwdown 2.0

I had a blast throwing down with my fellow personal finance bloggers that I knew that I wanted to do it again. But if I did it again, I wanted a few things to be different:

  1. More bloggers joining the fun.
  2. A much easier way to track the performance for each blogger.

Enter Motif.

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Grow Your Dough Throwdown Final Results

I can’t believe the Grow Your Dough Throwdown is over!

It’s been an exhilarating ride, and I wish I could say that I was excited to share the results.

Alas, my portfolio got its butt kicked, while my wife’s portfolio, on the other hand, did rather well.

In fact, I think everyone kicked my butt.

Oh, well; life goes on…..

Grow Your Dough Throwdown

The exciting thing is that the Grow Your Dough Throw Down 2.0 is ready to launch, and I will have details at the end of this post.

Until then, let’s take a look at how I did.
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Want to Win $2,500 of Apple Stock?

I’m an Apple fanboy.

A few years ago I got my first Macbook Pro and I haven’t looked back.

If you were to visit the Rose household, you would see that the entire family is on the Apple bandwagon with 1 iMac, 2 Macbook Pro’s, 1 iPad, 3 mini iPads, 1 Time Capsule and iPhone’s galore.

Yeah, we love Apple.

When Nvestly, a new social investment platform, asked me to participate in a $2,500 Apple share giveaway to bring awareness to their recent launch I was totally onboard.

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The Simple Way to Find Out How Much Investing Risk You Can Stomach

Risk is everywhere.

All I have to do is turn on the news to be reminded of that.

I think it’s easy to go about our day-to-day lives and forget that bad things can happen – until suddenly they do.

Speeding down the highway. Smoking cigarettes (or anything else). Driving after one too many drinks. All of these are examples of risky behavior. Could you do it and be fine? Maybe. But each of these behaviors carries an element of risk of harm to yourself and others.

The sad truth is that risky behavior sometimes ends in tragedies – some worse than others.

And sometimes, we don’t even realize how much risk we’re taking until something unexpected happens that changes how we think about what we’re doing.

The truth is, whatever you do in this life carries a degree of risk.

But there’s another side to this coin.

The Simple Way to Find Out How Much Investing Risk You Can Stomach

Benjamin Franklin is credited with saying, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained!”

That’s true. I get up in the morning and work hard because I believe and hope that I can make a difference in the world. I take risks, just like you do – and that’s okay.
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Grow Your Dough Throwdown – It’s Almost Done! (October Update)

The Grow Your Dough Throwdown is almost over (sigh).

It’s been a fun challenge, and it’s been exciting to see how my different portfolios have held up.

**You can check out the original announcement post here. And here is the March update, May update, and the Midyear update.

What hasn’t been exciting is seeing the other personal finance bloggers that are kicking my butt.

Like, serious butt kicking.

Either way, it’s been fun, and I’m looking forward to announcing that the Grow Your Dough Throwdown 2.0 will be happening next year.

October Update

This one should be bigger and better, and I can’t wait to share the details. Until then, let’s take a look at how my portfolios are doing.
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The Right Time to Buy Stock Is…..

It never fails.

Anytime a new investor wants to get started investing, they always want to buy stock.


Doesn’t matter that they’ve never invested before.

Doesn’t matter that they have no idea what makes a good stock.

They just know that guys like Warren Buffet made a killing by buying stocks and they want to, too.

Even worse is when they want to buy a penny stock. >>>PLEASE<<<< don't do that.

If you think you're ready to buy some stock, watch this video first.

GF¢ 035: How to Invest a Million Dollars (without blowing it like a rockstar)


They say you have a 1 in 10,000,000 chance of winning the lottery.

Well, today is my lucky day, because I just won – yeah baby!!

Okay….maybe I didn’t actually win.

We’re just going to pretend I did for the sake of this post.  :)

I once had a client ask me,

“Jeff, if you had a million dollars, how would you invest it?”

I’m not one who is usually into playing these games of pretend.

How to Invest a Million Dollars

Sure, as a kid, I loved to pretend that I was He-Man and that the big cardboard box in our basement was Castle Grayskull.  “I have the power!”  <<<He-man quote.  Fellas, don’t pretend like you don’t remember that! Haha….

But those days of “pretend” are long gone. That is, until today.

Today’s post is merely for the fun of it.

I’m pretending that I hit the jackpot and walked away with a cool mil.

For this pretend exercise, we’ll say that I’m netting a million dollars, and I have all of it to invest.

Just so we’re clear, this is not investment advice, so don’t take it as such.  And just in case that isn’t clear enough, read here.  You have been warned.
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Grow Your Dough Throwdown (Mid-Year Update)

It’s time for another Grow Your Dough Throwdown update.

We’ve reached the midway point, and the competition is definitely heating up. The Dow Jones shows no sign of letting go, hitting that phenomenal 17,000 mark.

Side note – isn’t that freaking crazy? It seems like yesterday that it was March of 2009 and the Dow Jones was at 6,500, and now we’ve hit 17,000? As my Filipino mom would say, “What the heck is that?”  I digress, I digress…..

For those of you who are new to the Grow Your Dough Throwdown, here’s a brief recap on what this Throwdown is all about:

I opened seven different accounts with seven different online brokers and investment sites, and deposited $1000 into each. The idea was to see how each would compare after a year’s worth of growth. To make it more exciting, I solicited several other personal finance blogging experts to join me in the fun.

Grow Your Dough Recap Mid Year

Each of them has opened up an account at an online investment site of their choice, and deposited $1,000. As a rule of state, we cannot deposit any more money throughout the year, but we can trade as much as we want. Since I opened up seven different accounts, I’m using only one account with my numbers compared to them. So how is it going? Let’s take a look.
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