How can you get an income for life?

When you invest with Lifetime, your savings are invested in a balanced fund and your income is insured for life.

The balanced fund is very similar to a KiwiSaver fund and is managed by our four investment managers:



The fund provides you with a market investment return and regular withdrawals are made to fund your fortnightly income payments.

Your investment is held and supervised by the Government-owned Public Trust and your income is insured and guaranteed by Lifetime Income, an insurance company licensed by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand. 

I don't worry anymore. I know I'll always have enough.


- Jane, Kapiti




How much income will you get?

The amount of income you get depends on your age and how much you choose to invest.

Your income is called your Regular Income. You can start receiving this at any time from age 60. It's paid to you fortnightly on the same day as New Zealand Superannuation and is insured to last the rest of your life.

When you invest, you're given a Protected Income Base. This is set equal to the value of your initial investment and is the base your income is calculated from.

Your Income Rate is based on your age when you start your Insured Income. It is quoted as a net rate i.e. after fees and tax.


Try the Lifetime Income Calculator to see how much income you could get.


Between $25,000 and $1,500,000
Between 60 and 90
Between 60 and 90



Your income can rise but cannot fall


Your income can rise with investment returns but because it's insured, it cannot fall.

Each year, Lifetime reviews your Protected Income Base and resets it to the higher of your investment account balance or its present value. This locks in annual returns and protects your income from market volatility. While your account balance will fluctuate with investment markets, your Protected Income Base will not.

Because your Regular Income is calculated from your Protected Income Base, this means your income can rise or remain the same, but it cannot fall.


What's your income made up of?

Your Insured Income is made up of investment returns and when necessary, capital drawdown.

In years where net investment returns are greater than your income payments, the difference is credited to your account and your Regular Income may rise proportionately.

In years where net returns are less than your income payments, you’ll drawdown some capital to make up the difference. Your Regular Income will remain unchanged.

Over the course of a long retirement, it's possible your Regular Income withdrawals may drawdown your balance entirely. However, this doesn't mean you'll run out of income. Lifetime’s longevity insurance ensures you continue to get your Regular Income payments for life.

This gives you certainty. You know you’ve got money coming in every fortnight to pay the bills, just like when you were working. You also don’t have to worry about stock market crashes or low interest rates affecting your income.

I knew Super wouldn’t be enough. Now I know I'll be ok, even if I live to 100

- Judy, Wellington




You're 67 and want to invest $150,000. How does it work?

Your Protected Income Base would be set equal to your initial investment of $150,000 and at age 67, your net Income Rate could be 3.80%.

This would give you a net income of $5,700 each year, paid into your bank account at a rate of $219.23 every fortnight, for life.

In the first year, let's say the fund earns a net annual return of 7.00% or $10,500. After receiving your regular income payments totaling $5,700, your account balance could be $154,800 at the end of the year.


At your annual account review, your Protected Income Base is increased to $154,800 and your Regular Income rises to $5,882 a year (3.80% of your new Protected Income Base of $154,800) or $226.23 each fortnight, for life.

What if market returns are poor?

Like all managed funds and KiwiSaver funds, returns from the balanced fund may fluctuate each year. Let's look at an example where your investment returns are less than your Regular Income payments. 

This time, the fund provides you with a net annual return of 3.50% or $5,250. After receiving your Regular Income payments totaling $5,700, your account balance could be $149,550 at the end of the year.


Although your account balance has been slightly depleted, your Protected Income Base cannot fall and remains at $150,000. This means you continue to receive your net Regular Income of $5,700 per annum, or $219.23 fortnightly (3.80% of your Protected Income Base), for the rest of your life.

If over the course of a long retirement you drawdown all your savings, Lifetime's insurance ensures you continue to receive your Regular Income for life.

Are your income payments protected from inflation?


Lifetime's standard net income rates are fixed for life and do not increase with inflation. That said, Lifetime can offer you an inflation-protected income for life option.

Your income rate will initially be lower than the standard rate for your age but will increase each year in line with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation rate.

If you would like to know more, please contact us for an indexed quote.




Case Study: Deborah needs a reliable income for life

Learn how Deborah invested to get an income for life.




Defer and grow your income

If you don't need income right away, you can choose to invest and defer your income for a few years. This can help you grow your savings and your future income while you're still working.