Non-Traditional Sources

If you have a need for supplemental income in retirement, beyond those accounts on which you’ve always planned on relying, there are other places you can turn.  Non-traditional sources of retirement income can include life insurance and the equity in your home.

Life Insurance

If you currently own, or are considering purchasing life insurance, you may be able to utilize these products as a source of supplemental income in retirement.  In addition to their death benefits, permanent life insurance can provide valuable ‘living benefits’, as the cash value within these policies has the potential to accumulate.  Owners can access their cash values policies through tax-free low cost loans or partial withdrawals subject to certain limitations, providing an added income option to supplement retirement income needs or other planning challenges.
Please note that partial withdrawals or outstanding loans and loan interest will reduce the policy’s death benefit and may have tax consequences. If the policy is classified as a Modified Endowment Contract (MEC) under IRS rules, distributions are generally subject to income taxes and, if before age 59½, a federal tax penalty. Taxes may be incurred if the policy is allowed to lapse before maturity.

Your Home’s Equity

One source of emergency funds could be right over your head.  If you own your home and have adequate equity available, it could be tapped for larger cash needs in an emergency situation.  The first option is for retirees that may or may not have a mortgage on their home.  If you don’t, taking out a mortgage or refinancing your current mortgage with a low fixed rate could allow you to withdraw a large amount of cash to use for extenuating circumstances.  However, you will be responsible for paying it back on a monthly basis. But the interest charged is often tax deductible.  The less complex option is to open a home equity line of credit on your home.  This option gives you a low to no closing cost option and check writing access to directly pay your expenses.
Please review these options carefully with your financial and tax advisors because without adequate income in retirement to pay back loans or make mortgage payments, life insurance and/or one's home could be jeopardized.
next steps

How TIAA can help

Give us a call

We're here to help. 888-583-2535 Weekdays 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. (ET)

Schedule a call

Tell us when to call you.

Start your profile

Log in, answer a few questions and get a picture of your retirement.
This article is intended for informational and educational purposes only and should not be regarded as a recommendation or an offer to buy or sell any product or service to which the information may relate.  Certain products and services may not be available to all entities or persons.
 
Please note that TIAA-CREF is not responsible for the content or privacy policies of third-party sites that may be referenced in this article or to which you may link from this article. TIAA-CREF does not endorse or recommend the products, services, or information found on any third party site.
123673