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In today's uncertain times, many investors are trying to become less dependent on the volatile stock market. Many are turning to gold and precious metals to diversify their portfolio and provide greater stability during these challenging times. While you can always purchase gold and silver as a personal investment, a better (or additional) option is to hold these precious metals in a retirement account.
Known as a Gold IRA, or Precious Metals IRA, this special type of account makes it possible to enjoy the tax benefits that IRA holders receive while also taking advantage of all that gold has to offer.
If you already have a 401(k), IRA, or another type of retirement account, it may be eligible for a Gold IRA rollover. While it may seem daunting to think about making such a big change and all the hassles that are likely involved, the process isn't as complex as you may believe. With the right knowledge and one of the best Gold IRAs companies on your side, you should be able to get your new Gold IRA set up in no time.
Today, we're going to share more information about Gold IRAs, how a Gold IRA rollover works, and the general steps involved in the process. Then, we'll share our recommendations for the best companies to work with when you're ready to initiate a Gold IRA rollover and begin taking steps to secure your financial prospects during your retirement years.
What is a Gold IRA?
Before we get into the process of initiating a Gold IRA rollover, let's take a step back and discuss exactly what a Gold IRA is. Gold IRAs are a type of Self-Directed IRA that allow investors to hold physical precious metals in a retirement account. Rather than investing all of your money in the stock market, as is traditional with most retirement accounts, you can diversify your portfolio with gold, silver, and other precious metals.
What are the Benefits of a Gold IRA?
There are several benefits of investing in gold. Historically, gold has been seen as very valuable. It has been the basis of currency for many countries around the world. Today, gold remains a highly-coveted asset. This also means that gold Is easy to liquidate. So, when you are ready to access the funds from your IRA, it should be relatively easy to find a buyer for your precious metals.
Gold can also serve as a hedge against inflation. This is because the value of gold typically increases along with cost-of-living increases. Compare this to the value of the dollar, which doesn't change and sees a decrease in purchasing power as the cost-of-living increases.
One of the greatest benefits of investing in gold is that it can help you diversify your portfolio. When all of your investments are held in the stock market, it leaves you more vulnerable to markets drops or crashes. On the other hand, if your money is diversified with a percentage of your portfolio held in gold, you'll be less negatively impacted by market volatility.
Those are just some of the reasons to add gold and other precious metals to your portfolio. There are additional reasons to set up a Gold IRA, specifically.
Gold IRAs offer several tax benefits to investors. As with other types of retirement accounts, you are able to invest money and defer the taxes you'll tax until you retire and begin withdrawing funds. This benefit is huge because it means that the money in your account can continue to grow tax-free until you are at least 59 ½ or older and begin taking disbursements.
You could also decide to set up a Roth Gold IRA. With this type of IRA, you have the option to have your contributions taxed at the time of investment. This means that you can make tax-free withdrawals when you retire. A Roth Gold IRA is a good choice for individuals who anticipate being in a higher tax bracket upon retirement.
What is a Gold IRA Rollover?
So, what exactly is a Gold IRA rollover. Gold IRA rollovers allow you to transfer the funds from an existing retirement account into a new Self-Directed Gold IRA. By transferring the funds, you will then be able to use them to invest in gold, silver, and other precious metals.
Traditional IRA custodians, like the one likely in charge of your existing retirement account, do not allow individuals to hold precious metals in their account. This is why you'll need to initiate a rollover to be able to do so.
How is a Gold IRA Rollover different than a Gold IRA Transfer?
When you're ready to move the funds from an existing retirement account to a new Gold IRA, you can choose either a rollover or a transfer. While the terms Gold IRA rollover and Gold IRA transfer are often confused with one another, there are some key differences that make each of these a very different process.
Before we get into the key differences, it is important to remember that the IRS prohibits individuals from acting as the custodian for their retirement account. If funds (or precious metals) are held by an individual for longer than allowed, penalties and fees will apply.
With a Gold IRA rollover, the funds from your existing account are moved to your bank account. You will then have only 60 days to transfer these funds to a new Gold IRA account. If there are any delays, and you hold the funds for longer than 60 days, you'll face fees and penalties. If you're under the age of 59 ½ (the age of retirement according to the IRS), you'll be charged a 10% early withdrawal penalty. Additionally, the funds that you held in your account will be taxed as ordinary income. The IRS also states that IRA holders may only complete on rollover each calendar year.
While rollovers are possible, you have to make sure that everything is in place before having the funds from your existing account transferred to your bank account. This can help avoid any delays, which could lead to hefty fees and penalties.
The other option is to use a Gold IRA transfer to move the funds from an existing account to a new account. With a Gold IRA transfer, the funds are moved directly to your new custodian and new Gold IRA account. This means that they never touch your bank account, so you don't have to worry about being charged taxes or early withdrawal penalties if the process takes more than 60 days. Unlike rollovers, there are also no limitations on the number of Gold IRA transfers that individuals can initiate each year.
What Accounts are Eligible for a Gold IRA Rollover?
Now that you understand a little more about the difference between a rollover and transfer, let's explore which account types are eligible to be transferred or rolled over into a new Gold IRA. Fortunately, most tax-advantaged retirement accounts are eligible. These account types include:
If you are a current employee with a 401(k), 457(b), or some other employer-sponsored account, your account may not qualify for a rollover or transfer. Some companies do not allow for transfers or rollovers for current employees. When or if you terminate your employment with the company, you should be able to complete a transfer or rollover.
Selecting the Ideal Precious Metals Allocation for Your Portfolio
You're almost ready to get the transfer or rollover process started. However, first you'll want to decide what percentage of your portfolio you'll want to invest in precious metals. There is no hard and fast rule about the appropriate percentage to invest, and it can vary significantly based on your age and financial outlook.
For some, investing between 5% and 10% of their portfolio in precious metals is seen as ideal. However, if your getting close to the age of retirement, this may be a bit too risky for your portfolio. Younger investors who are willing to ride the market and take a bit more of a risk may want to invest more than 10% of their portfolio in gold.
If you're not sure how much you want to invest in precious metals or what the best course of action is given your specific circumstances, we'd recommend consulting with a financial advisor before moving forward with a transfer or rollover.
How to Initiate a Gold IRA Rollover
Now that you've had the opportunity to learn more about Gold IRA rollovers and transfers, let's take a closer look at what the process looks like. Just keep in mind that every custodian and IRA company may have slightly different processes and procedures, so what is outlined below may vary slightly depending on which company you work with.
Choose a Gold IRA Company
The first step for setting up a Gold IRA and transferring funds from an existing retirement account is to select a Gold IRA company to work with. While there are several companies that offer this service, you'll want to do your research and choose a company that has a good reputation and experience in the industry.
You will want to find a company that will help you through all the necessary steps of initiating your transfer or rollover. Beyond this, you want the company you choose to be knowledgeable and able to offer advice, both in the short term regarding which metals to invest in, and in the long-term to help you grow your investment and prepare for retirement.
We'll share some of our recommendations for the best Gold IRA company to work with below. If you're looking for a quick answer as to who is the best, we'd suggest working with Goldco. They have a stellar reputation in the industry, have a plethora of positive reviews from past customers, have top ratings from the Better Business Bureau and Business Consumer Alliance, and offer a large selection of precious metals for their clients to choose from.
Work with a Self-Directed Gold IRA Custodian Company
In addition to working with a Gold IRA company, you will also need to work with a Gold IRA custodian. As mentioned above, individuals cannot hold the funds or precious metals for an IRA themselves, so everyone is required to work with a custodian. Not all custodians specialize in or allow their clients to hold alternative assets, like gold, in their IRA, so you'll want to find a custodian company that does offer these services.
If you're not sure where to look, it is likely that the Gold IRA company you chose will have some recommendations to share with you. Many Gold IRA companies have a preferred custodian company or companies that they like to work with. However, most should also be accommodating if you have already selected a specific custodian that you'd like to use.
Open and Fund Your New Gold IRA
After you've selected your preferred Gold IRA company and Gold IRA custodian, it is time to open the new account for your Gold IRA. Once open, the account will need to be funded. Here is where the transfer or rollover of funds comes into play.
Depending on which method you choose, your current IRA custodian will either transfer the funds to your bank account or to your new IRA custodian. If you have the funds transferred to your bank, take care to work quickly to send them to the new custodian so you won't have to face any fees or penalties. If you choose a transfer and the funds are sent directly to the new IRA custodian, you won't need to worry about any of these potential fees or penalties.
Keep in mind that some Gold IRA companies require a minimum investment of $5,000, $10,000, or more. If you do not have that much in your current retirement account, or do not want to invest that much, you may have to be more selective when choosing a company to work with.
Purchase IRA-Approved Precious Metals
After the funds have arrived for your new account, you'll be able to choose the coins and bars you'd like to invest in. Most IRA companies offer gold and silver coins and bars, and some may also offer platinum and palladium coins and bars for their customers to choose from.
If you're not sure which coins or bars you'd like to invest in, you can work the precious metals expert from the Gold IRA company to help you decide. They can offer advice about which coins or bars will help you achieve your financial goals.
After your precious metals have been purchased, they will be sent to an IRA approved depository, such as the Delaware Depository, Brinks Global Services, or International Depository Services. Remember, this is required by the IRS, as individuals are not allowed to act as the custodian for their own precious metals. Once you reach at least 59 ½ years old, you will be able to begin taking disbursements, if desired.
The Best Companies to Help with a Gold IRA Rollover
After reading about all the benefits of opening a Gold IRA, we bet that you are ready to get the process started as soon as possible. But, first things first; you'll have to choose the right company to work with. In the next few sections, we'll share more about our favorite Gold IRA companies to help you decide which one you'd like to work with.
Since it was started by Trevor Gerszt in 2006, Goldco has grown to become one of the most reputable names in the industry. When Gerszt started Goldco, he wanted to help each of his customers make the investment decisions that would ensure them future financial success and reduced stress.
Goldco has earned high praise from past customers. When you visit review sites, such as Google or Trustpilot, you'll see that the vast majority of reviews are highly positive and speak to the customer service and support that Goldco offers. In addition to these positive reviews from past customers, Goldco has also earned an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and a AAA rating from the Business Consumer Alliance.
One area that Goldco specializes in is helping their customers set up a Gold IRA. Goldco will work alongside you and your Gold IRA custodian to open and fund your account. The representative that you work with will support you in completing all of the required paperwork and can offer guidance in selecting the best coins and bars to help you achieve your goals.
If you're interested in opening a Gold IRA, you can visit Goldco's website. There is an interest form you can complete to help you get the process started. After completing the form, a member of Goldco's team will reach out to you.
Adding Precious Metals to an IRA
Below, you'll find some of the various gold and silver coins that IRA holders can add to their account. Keep in mind that IRS requirements specify minimum purity levels for gold and silver coins and bars (99.5% pure for gold and 99.9% pure for silver). All of the coins and bars below meet these minimum purity requirements (aside from the American Gold Eagle coin, which is an exception to the IRS's rules.
Free Silver Promotion for IRA Customers
Goldco is currently running a pretty amazing promotion for new IRA customers. When you rollover or transfer an existing IRA, Goldco will reward you with up to 10% back in free silver. This bonus can add up quickly and will help you further diversify your investment portfolio.
About Augusta Precious Metals
Our second pick for the best Gold IRA company is Augusta Precious Metals. Since it was founded in 2012, Augusta Precious Metals has been working to help their clients grow their wealth and prepare for retirement by investing in precious metals.
When you look at customer reviews for Augusta Precious Metals, it should be easy to see why they are one of our top picks. Past customers have a lot of positive things to say about their interactions with the company and the services they received. Beyond the positive customer reviews, Augusta Precious Metals is also highly rated with the Better Business Bureau and Business Consumer Alliance. They have earned each of these organizations' highest ratings (A+ and AAA).
Setting Up a Gold IRA
If you're ready to set up a Gold IRA with Augusta Precious Metals, contact an account representative. The expert you work with will be able to address any questions you may have and will help you make sure that all the required paperwork is properly completed. They'll also work with your IRA custodian to ensure that all the funds are transferred for your account without you facing any fees or penalties.
Adding Precious Metals to Your IRA
As mentioned earlier, the IRS has minimum purity requirements that coins or bars must meet in order to be held in an IRA. Augusta Precious Metals offers several coins and bars that satisfy these requirements.
After the funding for your account has arrived, you can choose from the gold and silver coins and bars listed below. If you already know what you want to add to your account, great. If you're unsure, don't hesitate to talk with your account advisor; they'll have helpful insight and suggestions to share.
About American Hartford Gold
American Hartford Gold's headquarters are in Burbank, California. The company, which was founded by Sanford Mann in 2015, offers a variety of services to their customers, including setting up Gold IRAs and purchasing coins and bars as a personal investment.
American Hartford Gold strives to work closely with each individual to determine the best approach for diversifying their portfolio. They have earned an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee, and employs a team of experienced advisors.
You may have seen information about American Hartford Gold in one of their several features on different networks and news resources, such as Bloomberg, Forbes, News Mach, and Breitbart News.
Opening a Gold IRA
Setting up a Gold IRA with some other companies can cause a lot of stress. With so many different steps and forms to fill out, many are left worrying about whether everything will go smoothly. American Hartford Gold doesn't want their customers to feel stressed about the process, so they worked to pare it down to three easy-to-follow steps.
These steps include:
Adding Precious Metals to a Gold IRA
As we stated above, after American Hartford Gold receives the funds for your account, you will be able to select the precious metals that you want to invest in. If you don't know which coins or bars are the best fit for your goals, don't worry. Your experienced account representative will be able to help you learn more about the various options and make selections that match your needs.
Free Silver Promotion for Precious Metals IRA
If you're looking to get the biggest bang for your buck when you set up your IRA, you may be interested to hear about the current promotion American Hartford Gold is running. When you open a qualified IRA, you can receive up to $5,000 in free silver. Additionally, American Hartford Gold is also offering qualified IRA customers up to three years of zero fees for their IRA. These two bonuses add up to an impressive incentive to help you maximize your earnings.