Thank you for visiting our gold IRA guide. In this guide, you will learn everything you need to know about owning physical gold in an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), gold 401(k) rollover and transfer rules, how to start a gold IRA, what are the best gold IRA companies, and much more.
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Before we dig in deeper, let us start with a brief introduction to why you should invest in physical gold and other precious metals.
To begin, it has been another tumultuous year for investors. War, increasing gas prices, and interest rate hikes are all hitting the wallets of everyday Americans and millions are watching their retirement savings disappear as the stock market continues to take a nosedive.
Also, inflation is skyrocketing at 9.1% and we are possibly facing stagflation, which is causing many Americans to move their money out of the stock market and into safe-haven assets, like physical gold and silver.
While there are pros and cons to investing in gold, 2022 marks the start of what many believe will be a bull market for precious metals. Federal spending is out of control and inflation is hitting record highs.
Hence, why we recommend that you move parts of your money and diversify your assets with a gold or precious metals IRA while you still can.
A gold IRA also allows you to take advantage of a simple and easy IRS loophole. This loophole allows you to hold physical gold and silver with the money you already have saved in your retirement account, completely tax and penalty-free.
Not only that…
There are many advantages to owning physical gold and silver, which we will list next.
Precious metals will help you:
On top of that, precious metals tend to move in the opposite direction of traditional securities like stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. So, when the stock market goes down, the price of gold and silver normally rises.
Therefore, in this gold IRA guide, you will learn everything you need to know to protect your retirement savings account with a crash-proof investment that will stand the test of time.
Let us start by taking a look at what a gold IRA is.
A gold IRA, also known as precious metals IRA, gold-backed IRA, or Roth gold IRA, is a specialized type of Individual Retirement Account (IRA) that allows investors to hold physical gold bullion or coins and other precious metals as qualified retirement investments.
Specifically, these special forms of IRA retirement vehicles are actually self-directed IRAs that are meant to hold physical gold coins and gold bars of high purity, as well as silver, platinum, and palladium if you so choose.
And thanks to the new IRS rules and regulations, you are now able to own high-purity (IRA-approved) and investment-grade gold bullion and the other precious metals in their tangible form in such accounts.
Best yet, this provides a safe way to protect your retirement savings, while also reaping the same tax advantages as a conventional IRA.
There are two types of gold IRAs available:
With a traditional-based IRA (Self-Directed-IRA or SDIRA), you do not pay tax on the contributions you make to your gold IRA from your income until much later in retirement when you take distributions. And you can start taking distributions without penalty when you are age 59½.
To give you an example, if you make $60,000 one year and decide to contribute $5,000 into your gold IRA, you will only pay the tax that year on $55,000.
In addition, by the time you pay tax on that $5,000, the gold you have spent it on could well be worth a lot more. And this possible rise in asset value could mean that you will end up getting some of your tax bills effectively paid for free.
Also, a traditional IRA comes with a ‘Required Minimum Distribution (RMD)’, starting at the age of 72, meaning that you must withdraw a certain amount from your IRA each calendar year. Accordingly, this RMD also applies to a gold IRA.
In contrast to a traditional IRA, with a Roth-based gold IRA, the contributions you make are NOT tax-deductible.
But on a positive note, when you make withdrawals from your gold IRA, you do not have to pay taxes on your investment gains. So, if the price of gold has increased significantly, this tax advantage may be a huge benefit.
Additionally, with a Roth-based gold IRA, the Required Minimum Distribution does not apply. Instead, an upper-income limit applies to Roth IRAs. And as of 2022, your modified annual income must be less than $144,000.
Now, let us look at more reasons why you should invest in a gold IRA.
You should invest in a gold IRA to protect your retirement savings account and make sure your assets are safe and secure, while also ensuring that your wealth will appreciate.
By investing in gold and other precious metals through a gold IRA, you do not have to worry about a possible stock market crash or inflation, where your paper assets would lose their value.
Gold tends to move in the opposite direction of paper assets and increases in value when the dollar is debasing. That is why it is important to diversify your investment portfolio and hold a tangible, physical asset in your retirement account.
In addition, a gold IRA is the better choice since traditional IRA accounts may not be enough to provide for you and your loved ones post-retirement.
Especially not if the economy continues spiraling out of control at this magnitude.
The sad truth is that the US creeps further into debt for each day and it is taking your IRA/401(k) along with it.
In fact, your IRA/401(k) has never been more in danger than it is today. And as a result, big banks may be coming after your savings and retirement accounts.
For certain accounts, they could help themselves to your money to stay solvent during this looming financial crisis. And worst of all, it is all going to be 100% legal because of the Dodd-Frank Act.
Luckily, you can protect yourself by investing in IRAs that will not disappear if the dollar does. In fact, the only secure financial asset that has stood the grueling test of time is gold.
Not only does a gold IRA permit individuals to diversify any portion of their retirement portfolio — including pre-existing IRAs and former 401k(s) with previous employers — but it also allows investors to own physical metals within that retirement plan.
With that, investors can securely possess physical precious metals in a tax-deferred account.
However, many investors do not know how easy and safe it can be to invest in gold and particularly through a gold IRA.
As already mentioned, a gold IRA is subject to the same rules as a traditional IRA, which allows investors with existing retirement assets to easily invest in gold.
Gold is protection and serves as an inflation hedge. Gold should not be seen as an investment, but as financial insurance.
First of all, the stability offered by gold is unmatched.
But the major single reason to invest in a physical gold IRA is that precious metals are the smartest and easiest means of protecting your retirement account against the ravages of inflation and other manifestations of economic chaos.
Like the ones, we are in right now!
The deal is that as money gets inflated away by the meddling government, it decreases in value. Fortunately, precious metals do not suffer as much at the hands of inflation.
Quite the opposite… This asset class may actually increase in value as the economy suffers and the American dollar declines over time.
Like any other IRA, a gold IRA offers the ability to accrue gains tax-free, while also allowing you the benefit of owning physical gold coins or gold bars.
Besides, there are no unfortunate tax consequences or hard requirements of declaring precious metals from the IRA to the IRS (since they are already aware of it).
And if you would decide to transfer your gold IRA assets to another approved investment or retirement plan down the road, you will not suffer any tax problems or penalties.
When deciding to liquidate, our 5 top rated gold IRA companies have buy-back programs and will offer you a much better price than a regular coin dealer or broker.
As mentioned, diversifying your assets with physical gold and silver can help you:
Additionally, because the beta or correlation between stocks and bonds, compared to gold is extremely low, falling stocks and bonds prices generally translate to rising precious metals bullion prices.
Typically, when financial conditions show signs of deterioration, as they do now, investors flock to gold and silver to protect their assets.
That is a proven fact!
Furthermore, it is also important to know that a gold IRA account is not only restricted to precious metals bullion. In fact, it can also hold franchises, businesses, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, commodities and futures, mortgages, cash instruments, and other non-collectible forms of investments.
Overall, there is no other form of IRA investment or retirement vehicle, which can hold a larger variety of investments than the self-directed gold IRA.
Did you know that ever since President Nixon closed the gold window in 1971, gold has actually outperformed both the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average?
And this, despite the amazing stock market bull run of 1982-2000.
Gold’s performance in the 21st century has been even more amazing, with gold making more than double the gains of both the S&P and the Dow, which is a strong indicator you can put your trust in this yellow metal.
The bottom line is that including gold within an existing retirement account could improve investment performance by increasing returns, without increasing risk. Or by reducing risk, without adversely affecting returns.
Starting a gold IRA is as easy as 1-2-3!
You can simply rollover or transfer parts or all of any existing retirement account over to a gold IRA. The process is easy and painless and takes about 10 business days.
All you need to do is sell assets in your existing accounts, roll over these funds over to your gold IRA, and use them to buy gold, or whatever metal you prefer.
And you don’t have to front extra cash.
Besides, the gold IRA specialists will help you navigate the process without a hitch. You can find our >>recommendation of gold IRA companies here<<.
Additionally, you can read more about the rollover and transfer process in the ultimate gold IRA rollover guide.
From the traders of antiquity to today’s most savvy investors, accumulating gold stands the test of time.
Gold is accumulated for a myriad of reasons, including to hedge volatile stock markets, to offset fluctuating commodities prices, and as a safe haven against falling home prices.
With that said, if you want to capitalize on consistent growth in value, gold has always proven the safest investment.
Like any other investment, the price of gold has volatility and can go up or down.
That is why it is recommended to diversify your investment portfolio into several asset classes. And you can easily do that by combining, for example, gold and bitcoin (or other cryptocurrencies) in a crypto IRA.
Additionally, it is important to only be dealing with a gold IRA company that has all the appropriate and required licenses, registrations, insurance, and bonds to protect your investment.
This means that you should ask for verification of these licenses and other information before you invest any of your savings.
Also, look for a gold IRA company with an outstanding reputation from objective third parties, such as the Better Business Bureau or the Business Consumer Alliance.
Once your new precious metals have been purchased, they must be stored according to IRS guidelines for gold or precious metals IRAs. Your choice of gold IRA company will have IRA specialists that will help you adhere to the IRS guidelines and hold your hand throughout the setup process.
Also, your precious metals investment will be stored with a custodian, just like any other IRA asset.
And the good news is that gold IRA custodians specialize in storing precious metals and have secure vaults set up to keep your precious metals safe.
More importantly, they also carry insurance to ensure that, in the very unlikely event that some metals get stolen or destroyed, your investments will be made whole.
With that, let us take a look at how to start a gold IRA next.
To begin the process of opening a gold or precious metals IRA is simple, especially when you partner with precious metals experts who know the ins and outs of this type of IRA.
Let us show you the easy 4 steps when opening a gold IRA next:
1. Select Your IRA Plan
For starters, to invest in precious metals you have to start with a self-directed IRA. As an investor, you can begin a new IRA account, or roll over from an existing retirement account. It is key to speak with a tax advisor and precious metals expert to make sure that you follow regulations and that any retirement accounts you currently hold are eligible for a gold IRA transfer or rollover, or other precious metals IRA.
2. Select A Precious Metals Custodian
Second, gold IRA assets need to be stored with a custodian per IRS regulations. So, working with precious metals investing experts, like those at Augusta Precious Metals or Goldco, will help you find a custodian experienced with gold IRA investing. That way, you’ll ensure that your self-directed IRA is set-up correctly.
3. Select Your Precious Metals
When choosing precious metals, it is important to remember that they need to meet certain IRS rules and regulations to avoid retirement mistakes when investing. Working with a precious metals specialist will ensure that you are choosing the right types of gold, other precious metals or crypto.
4. Purchase Precious Metals
Once you have chosen your desired metals as an investment, you can purchase them and work with your custodian regarding storage. The custodian will keep your assets safe and secure at a bullion depository so that they will be available when you need them.
IRA-approved precious metals bullion must meet certain standards. Specific pieces must be approved by the IRS in order to effectively be included.
Additionally, the standard of gold bullion is a minimum purity of 99.5%, while with silver it is 99.9% minimum purity.
Here are examples of IRA approved bullion:
For more details, you can visit IRA-approved gold and silver bullion.
If you so choose, you can also include other precious metals in your IRA:
As we have touched on earlier, investing in precious metals through an IRA has to be done in accordance with the IRS rules and regulations.
That is why it is crucial to work with a company that has a good track record working with these types of accounts.
A rollover happens when you receive the distribution from your existing retirement account, and then turn around and deposit it in another retirement account.
In this case, you would need to re-deposit the funds into the new retirement plan account within 60 days. The reason for this is that after the 60-day limit, you would be liable for taxes and other penalties on the money withdrawn.
You can also only roll over the same money once every 12 months to preserve the tax-deferred status of your retirement savings.
A transfer you can do at any time with your existing IRA, as long as the assets go from custodian to custodian. In a direct transfer, the money flows directly from one IRA custodian to another.
This means that the distribution check from the old IRA custodian must be made out in the name of the trustee or custodian of the new IRA account that receives the funds.
In contrast to a 401(k) rollover, transfers may be made as often as you want.
You can find out more about the rules and regulations in gold IRA rollover & transfer explained.
Learn what the difference between a gold IRA rollover and transfer is, what are the rules and regulations, how to store your IRA gold, when you can take physical possession of your gold, etc.
Learn the requirements set forth by the Internal Revenue Code for IRA-approved gold and silver bullion.
There has never been a better time to invest in gold, silver, and alternative assets (cryptocurrency like Bitcoin or Ethereum) than today. With the ease of setting up a gold IRA or crypto IRA, you can go from worrying about your retirement savings to complete confidence in the security of your wealth. But choosing the right company to invest with can be extremely difficult unless you know what to look out for.
When reviewing gold IRA and crypto IRA companies it’s critical to compare the ratings and reviews by looking at independent authority sources. We look at the scores given by using 5 independent rating sources that include the Better Business Bureau, Business Consumer Alliance, TrustLink, TrustPilot, and Ripoff Report.
We have looked into Goldco Precious Metals, Augusta Precious Metals, Birch Gold Group, Regal Assets, and BitIRA – all top-rated gold IRA & crypto IRA companies. As well as the best online gold and trading company BullionVault.
We believe it is. Throughout history, gold and silver prices have moved in the opposite direction of paper assets and can, therefore, provide a good hedge against inflation. Past performance doesn’t guarantee future gains, but the numbers show that the weaker the dollar has become in the past, the better gold generally has performed. In fact, the relationship between gold and the dollar is often seen as an inverse one.
Traditional IRA accounts may not be enough to provide for you and your loved ones, post-retirement. Not if the economy remains as uncertain as it has looked recently.
For eons, investors have looked to gold to help them potentially offset losses due to economic turmoil. A gold IRA or precious metals IRA permits you to diversify a portion of your retirement portfolio — including pre-existing IRAs and former 401k(s) with previous employers — by actually owning physical gold (and silver) within a retirement plan. As a result, you can securely possess physical precious metals in a tax-deferred account.
Indirect forms of investing in gold are much riskier than physical metal. You are relying on any third party individual or company to look after your wealth for you, and depending on the company’s success or failure, you risk losing your investment. With physical gold, you are in control of your wealth. Physical gold offers you that layer of protection and security which Gold Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), gold mining stocks and funds do not.
When investing in a gold IRA, you will get the same tax benefits as a traditional IRA, while actually owning physical gold coins or gold bars.
While some coins can be included in precious metals IRAs, only certain coins are IRS approved for inclusion in IRAs. In fact, not all bars or bullion are IRS approved. The IRS maintains a list of acceptable forms of precious metals for IRAs. You can be certain that a reputable gold IRA company offers a variety of metals for IRAs within IRS guidelines.
Yes. While established gold IRA companies often recommend Equity Trust as their preferred custodian and Delaware Depository for storage, you can choose your own custodian and storage companies.
Non-IRA precious metals, yes. Not metals for an actual IRA. IRS rules forbid keeping your IRA precious metals at home or in a standard safety security box. They must be held by an approved non-bank trustee or a bank within IRS guidelines that restricts access. In other words, just like a traditional IRA, the access to the precious metals in your precious metals IRA must be restricted in specific ways to ensure deposit and disbursement laws are followed.
No. Like all investments, the future value of precious metals is not guaranteed and can rise or fall based on a variety of market influences. But we believe physical precious metals are your safest bet to hedge against a stock market crash, inflation, and the debasing of the dollar.
At age 59½, you or the beneficiary of your precious metals IRA can start taking penalty-free distributions from the account, according to the IRS.
Usually around two-three weeks, although each application is different and the amount of time varies on a case-by-case basis.
The customers will receive top-notch service and specialized account setup knowledge provided by the gold IRA company’s IRA Processing Department throughout the process from start to finish. They do 95% of the paperwork with them. Customers can feel safe knowing they will be kept up to date every step of the transfer process by daily calls or e-mails from the IRA Processing team with any gold IRA company listed on How To Invest Gold. These companies also often provide lifetime account support.
Augusta Precious Metals is a premium provider of precious metals products and services, with a specialty in gold and silver IRAs. The company’s reputation of a customer-first approach to sales, service and education is well-known throughout the retirement investing community. Augusta has received ZERO complaints at either the BBB or BCA since opening its doors in 2012 – and has received thousands of 5-star reviews across the most popular consumer rating platforms. And here’s a big reason for all the excitement: Augusta offers the most competitive, transparent pricing in the industry, underscored by its price-match guarantee on all coins.
Additionally, Augusta will waive fees up to 10 years for new customers (a special – ask how many years you qualify for). As much as all that is, Augusta Precious Metals offers much more to hard-working retirement savers, including a free one-on-one educational web conference designed by the company’s on-staff Harvard-trained economist. This is the same web conference attended anonymously by hall of fame quarterback Joe Montana that convinced him to become an Augusta customer. Mr. Montana’s personal financial advisors found the company for him after researching all the gold IRA companies in the U.S.! Read the full review of Augusta Precious Metals in section: Reviews.
Goldco is one of the leading providers of precious metals IRAs, and its IRA & 401(k) rollovers are easy and painless. They pride themselves in customer service and the ability to help individuals diversify their retirement accounts and skyrocket their wealth.
Goldco has an A+ rating by the BBB, and Inc. magazine ranked Goldco the 528 in its 35th annual Inc. 5000, a list of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. With Goldco, any investor can buy precious metals outright, even if they specialize in precious metals IRAs.
For over a decade, our mission has been to provide investors and retirees with all the information they need when it comes to precious metals and cryptocurrency investing.
Not only do we provide a complete guide on the best ways to invest in precious metals, but we have also carefully vetted the best precious metals companies in the US to help you choose the best provider for your investment needs.
We believe that investing in precious metals and cryptocurrencies through your 401(k)/IRA is one of the best ways to invest in this asset class, due to the tax-saving component. A gold IRA or crypto IRA is the best way to protect your retirement account against an unstable market.
Disclaimer: The owner of this website is not licensed as an investment advisor and, accordingly, does not make any recommendations regarding clients’ personal investment portfolios. It is recommended that you carefully evaluate and research the risks and rewards associated with investing in alternative assets such as physical precious metals and cryptocurrencies before you make a purchase. Learn more in our Terms of Service.