What Is A Precious Metals IRA?
A Precious Metals IRA allows you to invest your retirement funds in tangible gold, platinum, silver, and palladium bullion. In so doing, it offers you a safeguard against unexpected financial crises and economic shocks through helping you maintain a well- diversified investment portfolio. It is a misnomer that you need to fund a new account like this with additional cash. The good news is that you can simply roll over an IRA account you already have or alternatively an employer sponsored 401(k).
Why would you be interested in this level of truly additional portfolio diversification? Precious metals provide a retirement portfolio with two key advantages that stocks, bonds, and real estate simply can not match. These are as follows:
- Insurance against your other investments – a useful characteristic of precious metals is that their prices usually go up and down independently of Treasuries, stocks, and bonds. This makes them a potentially highly desirable hedge when other markets become destabilized and you are attempting to re-balance your retirement portfolio
- A purchasing power hedge – inflation is the natural decline of paper currency value over time. While inflation has inevitably ravaged every paper currency in the history of the world, gold and silver’s purchasing power has remained remarkably consistent for thousands of years
What Is Involved In Opening A Precious Metals IRA Account?
Some investors might be discouraged from opening up a Precious Metals IRA account for fear of the difficulties associated with them and the paper work potentially involved. The reality is far different. There are three simple and easy to follow steps to setting up your own Gold or Silver IRA account.
- Open Your Custodian Account – Per Internal Revenue Service rules, you must maintain all of your Precious Metals IRA metals in a third party custodian account. There are a number of highly respected custodians who provide widely regarded service and safety. Some of the best ones include: New Direction Trust Company, the Entrust Group, Kingdom Trust Company, Gold Star Trust Company, Equity Institutional, and Strata Trust Company.
- Fund Your New Account – After you have opened up your new custodial account, you are ready to transfer over existing assets from an already existing IRA or employer sponsored 401(k). Alternatively you can fund the new account by sending in a check.
- Buy IRS-Approved Precious Metals – After you have funded the new account with your custodian and the account is fully established, you are ready to purchase IRA-eligible precious metals bullion. Your custodian can recommend a reputable precious metals bullion dealer if you do not have a relationship with one already. The custodian will lock in prices instantly and give you all of the needed information to finalize the precious metals bullion transaction. In general, the IRS has a few rules for metals to qualify for a Precious Metals IRA. Gold has to be minimally .995 fine (excepting the Gold American Eagle). Silver must have minimally .999 fineness. For both platinum and palladium, the minimum fineness must be .9995 or higher.
Custodian Versus Storage
Your precious metals will not be sent to your custodian once you buy them. Instead, they will be securely shipped to your storage facility, a vault center that works with your custodian and segregates your precious metals on your behalf. Storage companies include famous vaults such as Brinks Worldwide and Delaware Depository in the U.S. and a selected number of IRS-approved international vaults such as HSBC in London.
Making A Comparison of the Top Precious Metal IRA Custodians
When you are confident in the decision to invest your retirement funds in a Precious Metals IRA for 2019 (either by a directly deposited check or by rolling over another retirement IRA, 401(k), or 403(b) into a Gold IRA or Silver IRA), then you will need to select the Precious Metals IRA firm with whom you will work. This is not a conclusion you should jump straight to as it is arguably the most important decision in the process. Not all Precious Metals IRA firms are created equal. Some of them boast a significantly better track record than do the others. A few of them have even suffered from allegations of fraud.
You should also be aware that some of these firms are more one-stop shops than the others. This means that they can oversee and arrange the whole process on your behalf, such as in making arrangements with your existing IRA custodian and offering you storage. Other firms will only sell you the gold, silver, platinum, or palladium bullion for your Precious Metals IRA, leaving you to coordinate the other custodian and storage companies.
This comparison chart will assist you in making the best informed choice. To this effect, we have inputted the most current ratings for each firm from the best regarded review organizations like the Better Business Bureau, Business Consumer Alliance, and TrustLink. You can read the full company review by clicking on the “View Full Review” button under each firm in order to read the complete review. You can also print out this web page for use in the future.
Note: Our best advice is to contact several of these companies before you invest your retirement funds.
|Our Rank||Company||Total Annual Fees||Full Review|
$190-$230 per year
1st year free
$250 per year
$250 per year
$250 per year
$200 per year
$360+ per year
California Numismatic Investments
$300 per year
$225 per year
$175 + per year
Advantages to Maintaining a 5-20% Gold & Silver Allocation in your IRA
Here are the key reasons that you want to own real gold (versus paper gold) as a genuine hedge against the other types of investment classes in your retirement vehicles:
- A Safe haven in periods of economic, geopolitical, and financial chaos in the world – Gold has earned a justified reputation for being the crisis commodity as individuals around the globe trust in its safety when tensions around the world increase. Central banks and their backing governments react to global crises with the decision to print more paper money. Gold can not be conjured up from thin air or replicated using a printing press. Its inevitably limited quantities ensure it remains a hotly demanded asset especially in times like these.
- Safe haven hedge versus money printing and declining dollars – It is no accident history continuously and consistently reveals that declines in the dollar’s value correspond to commiserate rises in the value of gold bullion. In general, the other major assets like stocks and bonds typically follow the dollar’s lead. Yet gold does not correspond directly with the dollar, so it provides your portfolio with alternative protection in the event that the dollar takes a plunge.
- A hedge for deflation and inflation – Gold has a reliable history of not only positively reacting to inflationary periods but also doing well in times of deflation.
- Reliable value store – Owning gold does not lay out a path to personal riches. This is not why individuals invest in precious metals. The great thing about gold is it has never declined to or near zero. This is quite the contrary with bonds and stocks, which can and have become worthless on an individual issue basis.
- Fundamentals in both supply and demand – Gold is so much more than a highly desirable and beautiful precious metal. It possess useful properties and real-world commercial applications in a number of important and rapidly growing industries. Among these are such fields as architecture, electronics, medicine, high tech industries, and others. Despite rising industrial applications for gold, a finite and fixed quantity of gold mines and gold production exists. Fewer meaningful gold deposits are found every year and fewer significant gold mines come on line as well. A rising demand and limited supply is indicative of higher prices eventually.
- Protection and Diversification for Your Portfolio – Most people’s portfolios are massively stock heavy. This is a natural function of retail investors having a greater understanding of and more practical, real-world experience with investing in stocks than they do in bonds and even real estate. Yet gold has an advantage that other asset classes simply do not possess. The yellow metal maintains a negative directional correspondence with stocks, the dollar, and bonds all three. Any savvy investor will warn you of the dangers of keeping all (or even most) of your proverbial financial eggs within the same basket. It is a recipe for financial disaster when a financial crisis hits.
6 Things to Seriously Consider For When Selecting a Good Gold IRA Company
Our comparison chart above is intended to assist you in both comparing and contrasting the reviews and ratings from the best known Precious Metal IRA dealers. When you are contemplating selecting such a company with which to work, we strongly suggest that you consider these following six characteristics in your search:
#1 Ratings, Ratings & Ratings!
Ratings are a crucial and telling metric for how a company is doing according to its end-user customers like you. They are compiled from the firms’ existing base of clients. The more complimentary reviews that they have, the better this is. The best and most valuable ratings come from such trusted ratings organizations as the Better Business Bureau (BBB), the Business Consumer Alliance (BCA), and TrustLink. Other helpful indicators come from past customers who have responded to consumer information websites such as Complaint Board, YP, and Yelp. They provide you with an added dimension to the service quality and professionalism of the firm in question.
#2 Precious Metals IRA Costs and Fee Structure
Experts recommend that you consistently only consider a firm that offers a flat based assessment of yearly fees. Firms that offer scaled fees which will increase along side the size of your account are simply taking unfair advantage of your larger account. This becomes even more important for those investors who have medium sized to larger accounts (from $50,000 and up) as well as for those investors who have plans to increase the size of their own account consistently with time. It is surprising and scandalous that some of the firms that are reviewed here have been known to assess literally thousands of dollars each year in customer fees just for maintaining a bigger account balance with them.
#3 Time for Metals Delivery and Efficiency
You may not have considered how long precious metals delivery can realistically take. There are clients who have reported with great frustration that they had to wait even 60 full days for their new accounts to be established, funded, and for their new precious metals holdings to arrive and be inventoried. In the geopolitical and economically chaotic environment of today, there is no way this is an acceptable time delay to establish your financial protection and portfolio diversification.
#4 Safety of Storage
You should never forget the safety of your storage when selecting a Precious Metals IRA custodian. All custodians are not the same and do not all enjoy the same safety track record either. It is far better to select a firm that provides you with a range of storage locations from which you can choose. These should not only be domestically available ones either, but some international locations from which you can pick.
Segregated storage should also be an option for you. The term Segregated Storage refers to your own individual location within the overall vault. It means that your precious metals will not be stacked with someone else’s metals. It allows for optimal ease and convenience should you choose to liquidate your silver, gold, and other precious metals in the future. You want this to be both as easy and fast as possible. Be mindful of how much these firms charge for international or truly segregated storage as well.
#5 Unfriendly Customer Support and Unhelpful Sales Staff
Customer support should be an area in which your new Precious Metals IRA company excels, but unfortunately, our review comparison table shows that this is not always the case. There are a variety of ways that poor customer service can impact your ability to make the best choices for your Precious Metals IRA. For example, at some companies, their agents may opt to pressure you into purchasing numismatic coins or even commemorative and collectible coins for the simple reason that these always generate larger commissions for them personally and higher profits for their firms. This should set off alarm bells ringing in your head if and when you encounter these practices. We can not recommend strongly enough that you avoid such firms who engage in these kinds of detestable practices.
The reason is that commemorative and collectible gold and silver coins are never good recommendations for investors. Another key factor to consider is that these types of coins are not even allowed to be kept in your IRA by the IRS who makes the rules. A good idea in first contacting a potential Precious Metals IRA custodian is to pose as many good questions as possible. This will enable you to ascertain how helpful and knowledgeable their staff are on the phone. When they show impatience, rush you along in your decision making process, or attempt to press you along into numismatic or collectible coins, it is time to cross them off the list and call the next firm on your short list.
# 6 Do They Offer Other Alternative Investment Options?
One great feature of your new Gold IRA or Silver IRA account is that it is fully able to hold other kinds of alternative investments for the future. This is because it is a type of Self-Directed IRA. The ability to do this also comes down to the capabilities of your custodian though. Will your firm contemplate allowing you to invest in other alternative assets and investment choices like cryptocurrencies or other kinds of possibly alternative investments that you may wish to include? This is a serious question that you do not need to neglect to ask upfront.
Why We Personally Recommend Regal Assets for Both Gold IRA Rollovers & Bullion Purchases in 2019
As is evident by studying the table up above, Regal Assets is our only reviewed firm that has both a solid A+ rating at the Better Business Bureau, as well as a top AAA rating at the Business Consumer Alliance, and also more than 500 five star ratings with TrustLink. Regal Assets also has the advantage of being previously ranked in the coveted #20 slot nationally with the renowned Inc. 500. This tells you a great deal about the company’s expertise, experience, professionalism, and all-around customer satisfaction. If you want to get more information on our number one ranked Precious Metals IRA company Regal Assets Inc, simply contact them at 1-877-205-1104. Alternatively, you can also do the following actions:
- Check out their recommended investment packages.
- Request their free gold IRA investment kit
- Fill out the gold IRA setup form
It is our policy to remain a completely 100 percent independent review site. None of our employees or staff work in any capacity for any of the firms that we review on this web page. We strongly recommend that all investors spend sufficient amounts of time in performing your own due diligence when selecting such a firm with which to work. You should contact several of them and obtain their free investor kits in order to have a fuller understanding of what they offer you for your Precious Metals IRA.