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Safe money ideas for retirement

I suspect that my definition of "safe" and your definition of "safe" are probably different. If you are disturbed by market volatility and don't have a long-term view of at least 10 years, then I believe your return expectations are going to be hard to meet if you are very conservative. Safe often means cash, bonds and CD's. I am not in that "safe" camp.
My suggestion is to buy low-cost ETFs (VYM, PFF) that pay a rising dividend and/or individual stocks with a history of increasing dividends supported by growing earnings. My yield on my overall portfolio is about 4%, but my dividends have grown by 16.74% YTD 2018. Don't miss the power of growing dividends when you select investments. You don't want 5-7% if it cannot grow every year. Otherwise inflation will eat you alive.
No. I don't. I'm being honest.

Even 5%.  Safe?

To steal from wudged - define "safe".

The last years, yes I have beaten 8%. Did I SWAN (sleep well at night)? MOSTLY. But some periods, you know...$100,000 swings in couple days, can get to a fella.
Safe and 5-7% do not get along too well these days. CDs, T-bills, and fixed annuity may be safe, but they can only do 2-4% currently. Please share if you found the ways! I's love to know too.
Ten years ago you could buy a 5% CD. Unfortunately there is no way to safely earn 5% today. Currently the US 10 yr appears to be hitting a wall at 3%. That said, there are many ways to earn 5-7%, you just have to accept a certain amount of risk. The higher the yield the greater the risk. Personally I like to trade options to generate income.
I think safety is overrated. After all, was your income prior to retiring 100% guaranteed? You could, but probably shouldn't, get an annuity that will pay you 5% per year for the rest of your life. What you give up however includes:
1) all of your equity. You sign it all over, and they give you a 5% "paycheck," that's it.
2) the possibility of greater returns. If the stock market is up 20% for each of the next 5 years, you're left out of the rally.
3) flexibility. If you have big expenses one year and light expenses the next, tough. You can't adjust an annuity's payout.
However some people choose to put at least a portion of their assets into one or more annuities and feel comforted by the lifetime promise of an annuity. Social Security is basically an annuity, that's enough for me in the "guaranteed income" category.
My personal approach is a variation on the "bucket" approach; I divide my assets between lower return guaranteed investments, moderate risk conservative investments such as low cost index funds in domestic and international equities and bond alternatives, and my actively traded higher risk equities primarily through my Fidelity brokerage account. While you might think giving up your nest egg to get 5% of it back per year is safety, my feeling is that seeing my portfolio grow every year even after paying all my bills is safety.
To achieve 5-7% you will have to take some risk
Educate yourself on dividend oriented stocks and/or funds
Learn about the economic cycle and its affect on stock prices and sectors
Once you do that, learn about covered calls as a possible way to gain some additional income
There are other income generating techniques - but first learn the basics.
A simple example:
T now yields 6.28% Many posters here hold it for the dividend and accept the stock price variation
Selling a covered call 5 months out at $33 strike would resut in about 1.5% additional income
Do this with others to diversify and you can easily achieve 5-7% - BUT its not risk free AND you are practically guaranteeing to achieve ZERO growth -
If you want ZERO risk, your only choice are CD's which are not yet at your goal -
No can do. Look at investing in dividend payers maybe through ETFs, balanced with stable (bond) funds. E.G. get 3% from the dividend-payers and 2 % from the bonds. Depending on your state, you might also look at tax-free munis to reduce any tax hits, with a decent return (4% on my CA Munis).
If you need a 5-7% return, I would consider working part time in retirement. Any investments that will give you that return will involve moderate to moderately high risk.
or start small business where you have very little risk to your capital, but can supplement your retirement income

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