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Should You Work With MassMutual?

MassMutual

With the average life expectancy in the United States being approximately 79 years, it’s more than obvious that so many of us have a long retirement life to fund.

On its own, social security may not be enough to cover your expenses when living as a retiree, which is where annuities come in.

Having been in business for approximately 170 years now, MassMutual offers amazing annuity products to help you retire more confidently.

Company Background

Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual) is a mutual life insurance company that was founded in 1851 and has held a long legacy of offering great service to its policyholders.

Being a mutual company, it doesn’t have shareholders, but rather has the participating policy owners and its members sharing in its ownership.

The members and policy owners also have the entitlement to vote for the board of directors that runs the company, in addition to being eligible to earn dividends.

In truth, the company paid a total of more than $1.7 billion in dividends to the policyholders in the year 2020.

In addition to remaining as a mutual company, MassMutual has also shown its stability by maintaining its headquarters in Springfield, Massachusetts, where it was founded.

The majority of its CEOs and other top leaders have risen through the company ranks, which shows the company’s dedication towards ensuring that those affiliated with it get to benefit.

By emphasizing policy loans and insurance policies, the company was able to help lots of families to make it through the Great Depression.

The company, after joining the field of universal life insurance in the early 1890s, has since joined mutual funds, group pension, and asset management funds.

MassMutual’s Financial Ratings

One of the things that you will quickly note about MassMutual is that it has impressive financial strength ratings.

That’s in consideration that the company has earned impressive financial ratings from the four main financial rating firms in the U.S.

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A.M. seems to believe so much in MassMutual’s capability to meet all sorts of financial disturbances, which is why they gave it a strong rating of A++.

MassMutual’s ratings from Fitch are at AA+, which is the second-highest level.

What this means is that the analysts at Fitch believe that the insurance company had a strong business model and risk management strategy which do a lot to promote its financial strength.

Experts from Moody’s gave the company a rating of Aa2 (excellent), which is also among the top ratings that a company can get.

This means that the analysts at Moody’s believe in MassMutual’s capability to weather almost any kind of financial troubles, should there be any in the near future.

S&P (Standard & Poor’s) also gave MassMutual a good rating of AA+ (Very strong), which goes further to prove that the company is, without a doubt strong enough to make it through financial issues of different kinds.

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Going by the ratings from the four financial rating firms, it’s quite evident that MassMutual is indeed a strong financial institution, taking into consideration that not so many companies of its kind have earned such ratings.

This could also mean that MassMutual is a lot stronger compared to the majority of its competitors.

MassMutual's products

MassMutual has a lot of strengths, with one of the most outstanding being how the company presents its products.

Unlike some companies of the same kind, this one does not make an attempt to present ordinary products in a way that can bring confusion just because they want them to look more appealing.

All the charges are clearly stated to ensure that the clients stay in control of their spending.

The following are the main products that MassMutual offers:

Retirement products

Saving for retirement is a crucial step towards organizing your life so that you have less stress to deal with once your working days come to an end.

With a good retirement plan, you will get the financial independence that you need during your retirement period with greater ease.

The following are the main retirement products that you can get from MassMutual:

Annuities

This insurance company offers amazing annuities to its customers, to help them accumulate funds for their retirement goals.

The customers who choose to invest in annuities have the major benefit of receiving guaranteed income for life.

There are different annuity options to choose from, depending on your needs and preferences.

Deferred annuities

The first option is to channel your payments into deferred annuities, which grow tax-deferred and can be used to guarantee reliable income for a specified number of years during one’s lifetime.

The only time when you will have to pay taxes on your earnings is when the time comes to withdraw them as income.

Once you are set to start receiving your income, you can customize your income stream based on a number of options that you get to choose from.

Income annuities

If that’s not what you are looking for, you can opt to invest in income annuities, which also come in handy if you want a guaranteed income whether immediately or at a later date of your choice.

The main focus of income annuities from MassMutual is to provide guaranteed income, rather than to help you with accumulating retirement savings.

Income annuities are available either as immediate income annuities or deferred income annuities.

Due to the fact that guaranteed income annuities provide little to no liquidity, they may not be the best choice for someone who values the importance of having access to the money in their contract.

Variable annuities

You can also channel your payment to variable annuities, which give you the ability to grow your assets without paying taxes on the earnings, unless when withdrawing them as income.

You enjoy the convenience that comes with investing your contract value to fit your time horizon, retirement goals, and risk tolerance.

One thing that you ought to keep in mind about variable annuities is that they are associated with risk. That’s in consideration that your contract’s value can change depending on how the underlying investments perform.

Fixed index annuities

If that doesn’t define what you are looking for, you can invest in fixed index annuities (FIAs).

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These will give you the ability to not only earn interest, but also enjoy a stream of lifetime income via annuity options or, if eligible, a guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit (GLWB) rider.

The main benefit of GLWB riders is that you are protected from market loss and you still get to enjoy the convenience of guaranteed income.

IRA products

Other than annuities, MassMutual gives you the benefit of investing in an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). Such accounts are a good option whenever you want to save for retirement with tax benefits.

With an IRA account, you can choose among different investment options ranging from mutual funds to annuities.

There are two main types of IRAs that you can have: Roth and traditional, and each one has its eligibility requirements, tax benefits, and contribution limits.

Last but not least, you can also take advantage of Fortuna by MML Investors Services which is a digital investment platform available on MassMutual.

This platform has amazing benefits such as automated portfolio management as well as the convenience that comes with having a dedicated financial advisor.

Protection products

Such products mainly come in handy in the event that you have passed on. For guaranteed death benefits, you can invest in whole life insurance.

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If what you want is to avoid a situation where your assets are used to cover long-term care expenses, your best bet would be to go for long-term care and life insurance combination.

Life insurance products

Even though this one is not directly related to your after-retirement life, it will go a long way towards making your life after retiring a little bit more bearable.

When you get a life insurance policy from MassMutual, your loved ones can enjoy the benefits once you have passed on.

The two common types of life insurance that you can opt for are term and permanent insurance.

For term insurance, the policy will be effective for a specified period of time, and if you choose to go with permanent life insurance, it will be effective for a lifetime.

With permanent insurance, your loved ones are supposed to get payments regardless of when you pass.

Interestingly, some of the permanent policies that this insurance company offers have the ability to build cash value, which you can then use later.

In some cases, you can opt to convert your term life insurance into a permanent insurance policy.

MassMutual has three variations of permanent life insurance as mentioned below:

Participating whole life insurance

This one guarantees you a death benefit and makes it possible to build up cash value with time.

The good thing with the cash value portion of your whole life policy is that it grows tax-deferred. You also get the opportunity to earn dividends, which are not guaranteed.

Universal life insurance

Just like whole life insurance, you can build cash value as time goes by, with the added benefit of enjoying the convenience of flexible premiums.

The most important part of flexible premiums is that you have the advantage of being able to lower your premiums for a specific time period if need be.

Variable universal life insurance

This one mainly comes in handy for the individuals who are interested in determining how their premiums are invested.

This kind of insurance is similar to universal life insurance when it comes to being able to enjoy the benefits of flexible premiums.

You can also build your account value using different investment options.

What are the pros and cons of choosing MassMutual?

Just like any insurance company, you can expect to comes across a few pros and cons of choosing MassMutual. The following is a list of the main pros and cons of using MassMutual to guarantee your retirement life.

Pros:

  • There is a free life insurance program that targets low-income families
  • You can consult a professional for help with your needs
  • This company has been receiving fewer-than-expected customer complaints through insurance regulators
  • There are lots of retirement-planning options to choose from, and each one suits specific needs perfectly
  • Users can enjoy online application and immediate approval for Direct Term offers
  • There are convertible term insurance options
  • The company has a plain language policy to make it easy for customers to understand
  • There are a number of policies that are eligible for dividends
  • You can easily manage your account from the mobile app

Cons:

  • There are no online quotes for a majority of policies
  • Medical examinations are a requirement for all policies
  • There are time limits tied to conversion policies
  • Smokers have to put up with higher-than-average rates
  • One’s Direct Term premiums can increase after a medical exam
  • The rates are, in most cases, higher than average for mid-life to older applicants

So, is this company worth considering?

Going by the different plans available, the reviews available online, and other general information about the company, we can confidently say that it is a good choice, especially for younger adults or families.

You get to enjoy fair pricing and a wide variety of options to pick from.

Not only that, but MassMutual also pays dividends to the policyholders who are eligible.

This company also enjoys plenty of positive reviews as well as low complaints, all coming from good customer satisfaction.

Their customer support is, without a doubt, one of the best that you can get, according to the clients who have already interacted with the staff from MassMutual.

Conclusion

Guaranteeing your retirement life is one of the best steps you can take in life, but you have to ensure that you choose the ideal company for maximum benefits.

MassMutual offers a wide assortment of retirement and financial planning products for its clients which includes IRAs, trust services, disability insurance income, long-term care insurance, and more.

This insurance company is a good choice for individuals who are looking for reliable retirement products such as annuities.

Keep in mind, however, that its insurance products are not the easiest to evaluate due to the insufficient information provided.

MassMutual’s financial stability, however, makes it well worth a look, even though there may be limited information about some of its products.

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