How To Convert Your IRA Into a Gold IRA in a Few Easy Steps
Protecting the wealth stored in your 401(k), Traditional IRA, or Roth IRA, from currency debasement, inflation, stock market volatility, and geopolitical risk is something you need to be seriously considering.
With the state of the global economy facing such turmoil as it is now, an improved strategy for managing your account is needed.
One option that is quickly becoming popular is converting paper assets, such as mutual funds into a self-directed IRA, such as a Roth gold IRA, based on physical gold or other physical precious metals.
Gold IRAs can be used side by side with a traditional or Roth IRA as part of the overall retirement account to give the investor more options in times of economic uncertainty.
There are also some tax benefits to be had for those who can properly diversify their retirement accounts in this way.
What Will I Learn?
- What Is a Traditional IRA and How Does It Work?
- Why Should I Convert My Roth IRA to Gold?
- Gold IRA Rollover vs. Gold IRA Transfer
- How To Convert Your IRA Into a Gold IRA in Five Steps
- IRS Approved Coins
What Is a Traditional IRA and How Does It Work?
In simple terms, a Traditional IRA is an Individual Retirement Account that offers attractive tax advantages to the investor, which is why it can sometimes be called a tax-advantaged retirement account. All contributions made to the IRA are not taxed and all earnings are tax-deferred.
A financial institution, such as a bank, credit union, or brokerage firm is usually the best place to open such retirement savings accounts. Your IRA funds can be used to invest in mutual funds, stocks, bonds, or other investments.
Why Should I Convert My Roth IRA to Gold?
While a Roth IRA is a tried and tested option for an individual retirement account, certain advantages come from converting your IRA to gold. When you use your existing IRA funds to purchase gold and other metals, you get the following benefits:
Hedge Against Inflation
Physical gold investments will help protect your retirement portfolio in times of inflation because as Fiat currencies, such as the US dollar depreciate, precious metals will become more valuable.
This means the portion of your existing IRA account which has been converted into a new gold IRA is safe from whatever happens in the economy, which is called a hedge against inflation.
When you convert IRA to gold IRA, you gain a valuable resource that will only become more valuable as time goes by. Gold and silver have actual uses in areas such as medicine and technology. Gold bullion is also in great demand by governments and other financial institutions meaning gold prices will increase.
Flexibility and Liquidity
Gold IRAs have a lot more flexibility than other retirement options because when you invest in physical gold and precious metals, you have a lot more control over your investment portfolio. This is unlike traditional IRAs where you are limited in terms of which assets you can invest in.
Selling precious metals, in particular gold and silver, is also very easy due to their high demand. This means in times of emergency, you can quickly off-load a part of your portfolio to get access to a quick source of funds.
Gold IRA Rollover vs. Gold IRA Transfer
The best way to fund a self-directed IRA is by doing what is called a gold IRA rollover. This rollover process works according to strict IRS regulations which you and your chosen Gold IRA company have to follow.
One such rule is that you are only allowed to hold onto money from your retirement savings accounts for a maximum of 60 days before using it to fund a new self-directed IRA. Failure to stick to these regulations will result in penalties being charged, which can be as high as 10% of the value of the self-directed IRAs.
Another option when opening a new gold IRA is to transfer funds directly to the self-directed IRA. In this case, the funds go directly from one account custodian to another without ever having touched the investor’s bank account.
The gold IRA transfer method has the benefit of not being taxed or incurring penalties such as the one imposed on a rollover for the violation of the 60-day IRS rule. There are also no restrictions on the number of transfers you can do, while a rollover is limited to just one per year.
How To Convert Your IRA Into a Gold IRA in Five Steps
There are so many different gold IRA companies that can handle the rollover process of converting IRA to gold IRA, which makes an otherwise complicated process very simple.
One of the things you need to do as a diligent investor is to research as much as you can about precious metals, buying physical gold, gold IRAs, and gold IRA companies. This knowledge will be vital as you take the following steps needed to open a self-directed IRA:
Step 1: Find the Best Gold IRA Custodian
When making your choice of custodian from among the top gold IRA companies, it is best to take your time and make the right move. From this point onwards, all the steps needed to convert your Traditional IRA to a gold IRA will be pretty much in the hands of your custodian so it is important to choose wisely.
If you are looking for a good gold IRA company, consider the following:
Birch Gold Group
American Hartford Gold
The following are some of the important things a good gold IRA company will have:
Opening and maintaining a gold IRA account requires a serious amount of investment, before even considering the money that will be needed to pay taxes and fees.
If you are going to entrust a custodian or precious metals dealer to buy gold assets and precious metals on your behalf, you have to make sure they have a good reputation.
The gold IRA company also needs to work with an IRS-approved depository that is licensed to hold gold bullion bars and other assets on behalf of investors.
Wide Selection of Precious Metals
You will want to make sure that your custodian has a wide selection of precious metals to choose from, otherwise, all your purchases will be limited to gold coins, gold or silver bullion, or other metals that are commonly found in mediocre custodians.
The wider the precious metal selection, the better you can spread retirement funds to reduce the overall potential inflationary impact in case the economy turns for the worse.
No Hidden Fees
Converting your existing retirement account to a new self-directed IRA will obviously come with its associated fees.
However, what you need to avoid is being charged hidden fees that were not mentioned at the start of the process. Besides the money directly used to purchase gold, all extra charges should ideally be used to pay taxes or cover custodian and storage fees.
Easy Setup Process
The reason why you choose to pay for a custodian rather than buy direct from precious metals dealers is for convenience. This means the account setup process needs to be easy enough for you to go through without wasting time running around from one retirement account to another.
Exclusive Perks for Members
As a precious metals IRA owner, there are certain perks that you can expect from some gold IRA companies.
However, these are not, by any means, guaranteed, so you should look into each option carefully before choosing the best custodian.
Perks that you can expect include buy-back options when you need to liquidate your funds, additional precious metal packages offered to members only, and money-back guarantees in case you change your mind.
Step 2: Inform Your Current Traditional IRA manager
Your existing account administrator will have to be informed of your intentions to open a new account. You can easily get in touch with them by calling the firm that handles your IRA.
However, even though they are legally bound to allow you to diversify your retirement savings in any way you wish, they will still try to convince you to keep your money with them. In such cases, you have to be firm and insist that you a sure of your decision despite what their financial advisors may say.
Two things you should not fail to discuss under any circumstances are whether you intend to do a rollover or you are transferring assets and whether your account is a Roth IRA or Traditional IRA.
Step 3: Complete All the Paperwork
With such an important financial decision, you should not be surprised that you will need to fill out a lot of paperwork. In this case, the paperwork that is needed is for both the IRA account from which the funds are coming and the new gold IRA being opened.
Be sure not to leave any required field missing as this may cause your application for a rollover or transfer process to be denied by the IRS.
Certain processes, such as transferring from a Roth IRA to a Roth gold IRA are not difficult to manage.
However, there are other types of rollovers or transfers that may prove to be too complicated to handle on your own, in which case you will need to ask your custodian or account manager to give you whatever they deem to constitute financial advice.
Step 4: Fund Your New Gold IRA
Once the paperwork has been approved by the IRS, you are free to fund your new gold IRAs with as much money as you want. Your current account administrator is responsible for sending the funds directly to your chosen gold IRA custodian.
All you need to do is authorize the amount you need transferred and let the two custodians handle the rest of the process. One thing you should do is to make sure you are also monitoring the fund transfer so that if you notice any irregularities to can let your custodian know in time.
Step 5: Choose Your Precious Metals
You can now pick and choose the metals you want to invest in from the comfort of your own home. Depending on the precious metals your custodian has, you can invest in a lot more metals than just silver and gold, such as platinum and palladium.
Once you confirm your purchase, your metals will be taken to a storage facility approved by the IRS for safekeeping. The IRS will not allow you to hold physical gold or other precious metals that are part of your IRA.
IRS Approved Coins
If you want to own and keep your own metals, you will have to approach a precious metals dealer and buy directly from them. However, there is a big risk of being scammed, so this is not a good idea unless you are confident that you know what the approved metals are.
Some examples of coins allowed by the Internal Revenue Service to convert IRA to gold are:
American Gold Eagle bullion
American Silver Eagle bullion
Austrian Gold Philharmonic
Australian Silver Kookaburra
Gold, silver, and platinum bars and rounds produced by an NYMEX or COMEX
Chinese Gold Panda
American Silver Eagle proof
American Platinum Eagle
American Gold Eagle proof
American Platinum Eagle
Canadian Gold Maple Leaf
Canadian Platinum Maple Leaf
Canadian Silver Maple Leaf
Other IRS approved gold proof
If you intend on buying silver and gold bullion. then make sure that it is of the right purity, which is 99.9% for silver and 99.5% for gold. Platinum and palladium have a required purity of 99.95.
Are you considering diversification into alternative assets? Buying precious metals is a very good option. You can approach a financial advisor to discuss the alternative investments we mentioned in this article.
Whether you have millions of dollars to invest or you are just saving part of your ordinary income, opening a gold IRA could be the key to securing your future even in the face of economic turmoil.
Follow the tips and advice mentioned in this article to make sure you stick to the IRS rules and regulations and choose the right custodian to handle your account.
Many reliable companies are available and the process is quick and easy. Make the right choice today, for yourself and your family.