(Pocket-lint) - Disclaimer: We may receive a referral fee from some of the companies featured in this article. This article does not constitute financial advice. Refer to a professional for financial advice, and only invest what you can afford to lose.
If you've been contributing to your 401k for several years, and have recently left your job and are now worried about the best course of action, then gold IRA might be the way to go.
For many, transferring their 401(k) balances to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) is a sound call to take. This 401k to gold IRA rollover guide ensures that your retirement funds grow tax-free with minimal risk.
Top Gold IRA Rollover Companies of 2022
- Augusta Precious Metals - Best gold IRA company overall and most trusted
- American Hartford Gold - Runner up
- Birch Gold - Excellent customer service
- Goldco - Best gold IRA staff overall
The renowned Augusta Precious Metals company has been in the industry since 2012. The firm vows to prioritize client monetary benefits through low fees and transparent prices. If you're looking for an IRA in gold and silver or a non-IRA investment in gold and silver, this family-run enterprise is your best bet.
Over the years, Augusta Precious Metals has attained a superior ranking by authorized sources. The company has been awarded an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and the status of AAA by the Business Consumer Alliance. Moreover, the IRA Gold Advisor virtual platform has titled the company the "Most-Trusted Gold IRA Company in the United States."
This company is a bit different than its other gold IRA competitors due to its adaptation of various unique features. These include the lifetime service guarantee and a wide variety of educational resources. Educational videos on current economic conditions and precious metal information by Harvard-trained economists are quite helpful. The provision of such practical details allows you to fully understand the necessity of wisely investing for a secure future.
Their IRA setup procedures are simple, essential, and easy to follow. There is also specialized material on precious metals items offered at Augusta's helpline, including some most preferred retirement savings options for American citizens.
In addition, their commitment to providing stellar customer service knows no bounds, and their live chat option on the webpage never leaves any of your concerns unanswered. You'll still have the company's full attention even after your transaction has been finalized.
- Really simple 401k rollover process
- Zero Complaints
- Reduced fee costs and straightforward pricing details with no hidden expenses
- You have the option to choose between valuable metals such as gold and silver
- A vast range of metal items such as coins, bars, and bullions for your investment options
- Cash-back policy
- The company promises lifetime service and support to its potential and existing investors
- All gold and silver products are insured by Augusta, so you don't have to worry during the transfer or shipment phases
- Exemplary customer feedback and high ranking on verified sites
- Unavailability of precious metal items such as platinum or palladium
- A minimum purchase amount is put in place to activate your IRA
- You can only order the precious metal products by visiting physical branches of the company
Some people lean towards family-owned businesses, such as American Hartford Gold, due to their commitment to long-term stability and ensuring financial security for loved ones. This renowned company has been one of the industry's top for the past six years. Despite its recent formation, American Hartford Gold has managed to grow its client base and enhance its trust factor.
Los Angeles and Woodland Hills, California, are home to the company's two American Hartford Gold head offices. It's astounding how the company continues to focus on helping individuals diversify and safeguard their gold and silver assets even after having delivered over half a billion dollars worth of precious metal products.
Moreover, apart from offering precious metal IRAs and 401k rollovers, the company ships the items right to your doorstep efficiently. The service also includes storing your valuable assets in third-party storage facilities such as Delaware Depository Service. You definitely can’t risk misplacing or having these physical forms of savings stolen.
American Hartford Group has earned customers' trust by providing them with the most up-to-date information on gold and other precious metals. Furthermore, while navigating their webpage, you may be pleased to come across round-the-clock customer service representatives. Consequently, you could discover necessary details and informative resources within a short period.
This company's buy-back program is definitely something worth considering. You never know what the future may hold. If you ever find yourself in a position to sell your precious metal products to retrieve some urgent funds, then American Hartford Gold is your ideal bet. The company offers to buy your physical assets at the current market prices, therefore ensuring that you yield the least monetary risk.
- Five-star ratings and positive customer service reviews
- The repurchase guarantee provides a viable and feasible backup plan if you ever have to sell your precious metal wealth
- A budget-friendly initial investment is required to start your IRAFree product shipping along with insurance provision
- Wide variety of gold and silver products on their webpage
- Online customer support availability regardless of what time it is
- Comparatively higher account maintenance charges and annual expenses to other companies in the investment industry
- American Hartford Gold's virtual catalog does not include pricing details, which may cause inconvenience as you will have to call their helpline separately
- Shipments are only available for those residing in the United States
Birch Gold Group is one of the top gold IRA providers due to the wide variety of precious metals and the abundance of educational information it provides. Therefore, it is safe to say that this company is ideal for new gold investors.
California-based Birch Gold Group has been in operation longer than most of its competitors in the industry. Investment in precious metal IRAs was the business's primary goal when it was founded in 2003.
Regardless of being in service for almost two long decades, the company has managed to not only maintain but rather enhance its outstanding global reputation. Birch Gold Group has attained near-perfect ratings by sites such as Google, TrustPilot, and many more. It's plausible for you to wonder if these ratings are merely a result of bribery, but it has been verified that these virtual platforms only award ratings based on customer feedback.
Equity Trust is likely the best option for you using Birch Gold Group's recommended custodian. This includes where you'll keep your gold products or other precious metals. Delaware Depository Service Company, Brinks, and International Depository Services are your three possibilities. Generally, you can expect to spend a monthly storage cost of over a hundred dollars.
The company offers a diverse range of precious metal products such as the American Gold Eagle Bullion, Canadian Gold Maple Leafs, and Silver Coins. The lengthy list of items allows you to invest in valuable metal assets according to your savings budget and gradually increase ownership.
It is important to note that Birch Gold Group expects a base payment for expenses from its investors. These charges include 401k transfer fees, annual account maintenance, and custodial fees. Regardless of how many precious metal assets you own in your IRA, these expenses will be consistent and applicable.
- Open and transparent pricing and fee structure details accessible on the webpage
- Precious metals such as gold, silver, platinum, and palladium are available in the form of coins and bars.
- The base fee charges for your IRA won’t cost you an arm and a leg
- The company’s website is full of educational resources for your knowledge and ease of understanding
- A reasonable minimum investment is required to activate your gold IRA
- A stellar reputation and positive client reviews
- The flat fee charges may be inconvenient for investors with minimal precious metal assets
- Transferring your 401k to a gold IRA with Birch Gold Group may take up to thirty days
- No option for a live chat on the webpage, which makes it challenging to instantly contact customer support representatives
- International Citizens cannot invest in the IRA
GoldCo is the most recognized IRA firm for gold purchasers, and it's frequently included in lists of the top 10 worldwide. GoldCo has established itself as a leading seller of gold and silver IRAs in business for sixteen years. The funds can be used to finance your account regardless of tax deductions.
GoldCo’s procedure for setting up a gold IRA is relatively straightforward, with polite and competent customer service representatives at your service. After signing a contract to finalize your purchase, you'll have to finance your new self-directed Individual Retirement Account (IRA). You may opt for a 401k rollover to do this. You can choose which precious metal products to add and diversify your savings portfolio.
GoldCo's virtual platform provides access to all sorts of company-related reviews and feedback from real people. Undoubtedly, the A+ ranking by the Better Business Bureau aids in ensuring GoldCo's stellar reputation.
In addition to allowing potential investors to give their own opinions about the company, GoldCo's outstanding customer service ensures that none of your questions are left unanswered. The online chat option is available seven days a week and connects you to the experts in this industry. Moreover, the site provides links to many informative articles and videos that aid in deciphering the best financial decisions for you.
A unique feature on GoldCo's website is the choice of customizing the fonts and visual aspects of the platform. It's rare to come across a company going to such lengths for its online investors and ensuring they have a comfortable time navigating the site.
- Reasonable and explicitly stated pricing details on GoldCo’s online platform
- As an appreciation gift, the company rewards you with up to 10 percent of your investment amount in the form of precious metal products.
- Decades of experience ensure the company's reliability and success
- Low fee structures and annual account protection charges
- Extensive variety of gold and silver products to diversify and expand your physical assets
- New investors are expected to pay a rather large sum to activate an IRA
- Platinum and palladium products are not offered
- There are fewer resources regarding product details and current economic conditions; one may view it as a poor effort to ensure that clients are well-informed
What is a Gold IRA Rollover?
IRA rollovers allow you to move money from a current retirement plan into a new precious metal asset. A gold IRA holds physical gold or coins instead of standard holdings like equities or stock exchange shares. The most popular method is to move your money straight from your previous 401k account to your new IRA. This straightforward procedure can be completed over the telephone or the internet.
You can buy actual gold in an IRA rollover to shield your retirement funds from economic uncertainties and devaluation. This method effectively deals with a tangible commodity with an inherent worth that is not dependent on the stock market progress. Even in periods of high economic volatility, this can be beneficial security for your retirement assets.
However, before activating a gold IRA or purchasing a precious metal product, carefully go through the criteria set forth by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The organization has clearly set the standard for evaluating metal fineness, and by knowing such information, you will certainly be a confident first-time gold investor.
The Truth About a Gold IRA Rollover
Can I roll my 401k into gold?
Fortunately, it is possible to entirely convert an existing 401(k) into gold or another precious metal. However, this does not give you a get-out-of-jail-free card. You will still have to pay your taxes without any further deductions.
In addition, you will need to leave your present job before moving your 401k to a self-directed IRA account. You can purchase gold and silver products with the money you've transferred from your 401(k) to your new IRA.
The Difference between a Gold IRA Rollover vs. Gold Transfer
A rollover is only possible under specific situations such as:
- The retirement plan administrator of your workplace (or sponsoring corporation) has changed.
- You have resigned from the workplace that controls your accounts.
- Changes being made to your company's pension plan are pretty substantial.
There are two rollovers: a direct rollover and an indirect rollover. A direct rollover transfers assets from a qualifying retirement scheme or a 401(k) to an individual retirement account (IRA). A purchase comes directly from one source to the next when it is delivered in this format. Until the commodity is moved, you won't be able to access it.
On the other hand, the sixty-day rollover procedure is sometimes referred to as an indirect rollover. The asset is transferred to the IRA within 60 days of the withdrawal. Your asset may send periodic checks to your checking or savings account, and from there, you could sign a new check and transmit payments to your new IRA operator.
Alternatively, a transfer refers to the movement of retirement savings between accounts. It's not necessary to move your money from one account to another. Transferring gold from an IRA does not necessitate seeing the bars. The same is true for all types of assets. There is no limit to how many times or how much money can be exchanged.
Reasons Why You Should Roll Over Your 401k to an IRA
Reduces The Chances of Investment Risk
When it comes to retirement planning, having a well-diversified portfolio should include holding precious metals in an Individual Retirement Account. Why limit yourself to a minimal investment option. Instead, diversify your investments so that you have other funds to fall back on even if one fails.
Long-term deposits, such as simple IRAs and 401(k)s, are susceptible to price fluctuations. You can safeguard your retirement money from economic slowdowns and turbulence by setting up an investment strategy that includes some gold in an Individual Retirement Account (IRA).
Investing in gold IRAs is especially popular among the older population, who view them as ideal vehicles for diversifying their retirement savings. Indeed, with age comes wisdom, as rolling over your 401k to a gold IRA will yield fruitful outcomes.
Beneficial Tax Implications
Just like traditional IRAs, gold IRAs come with similar tax-saving advantages. All of your gold IRA's profits and revenues will be tax-deferred, enabling you an exemption on certain taxes for maximum income growth. As a result, you'll only be taxed on the gain you make from reselling your gold, not on the gold itself.
In light of these tax advantages, gold is a good choice for IRA accounts, which are often long-term investments. Physical gold is less volatile than traditional IRA assets, so it's best treated as a long-term investment. If you're nearing retirement, rolling over to a gold IRA should be your next move.
Complete Control Over Your Investments
Self-directed Individual Retirement Accounts, or "gold IRAs," let you make investment judgments and manage your assets at your own pace. A gold IRA fund gives you more freedom and mobility than a standard Individual Retirement Account, even though the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) restricts the sorts of valuable metals you can buy.
Easier Estate Planning
There is a significant likelihood that your 401k will be distributed to your successor in a single large payment upon your demise. This may pose revenue and estate tax issues for your beneficiaries. Most firms prefer to allocate the money fast so that they don't have to retain the profile of an individual who lives no more.
Even though inheriting an IRA fund has tax consequences, the IRAs still have a more comprehensive range of possibilities for distribution.
Gold Prices Only Tend to Increase
Gold's valuation has risen steadily over the years due to a tight supply-demand balance. History has shown a consistent rise in value, so it's not just a recent phenomenon. Furthermore, gold's value tends to climb in moments of economic crisis, making it an excellent asset during periods of financial and political upheaval.
Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Roll Over Your 401k to an IRA
Limited Legal Security
In most cases, federal law protects 401k funds from most types of verdicts from creditors (except for perhaps IRS tax bills or family support obligations). Only regional law protects IRAs, and the level of protection varies.
If you're worried about possible lawsuits, creditors, or collusions, you may want to consider sticking to your 401k account.
Stable Value Portfolio
Stable value funds are a specific form of investment available to employer 401k programs. These plans are comparable to money market funds, except they often give higher interest returns. However, they are not open to the individual investor market. As long as your 401k allows you to use these danger-free plans, you should surely continue with it.
Fewer Loan Options
There may be a lack of finances available if you're looking for money immediately. Employer-provided 401k plans may allow for loans, but individual retirement accounts (IRAs) do not.
Costly IRA Expenses
The cost of storing gold in physical form is prohibitive. Gold IRAs must be held by a licensed trustee following IRS standards. The authorized custodian must deposit gold in a safe and reliable area that meets all criteria. Additionally, gold depositories must fund security and surveillance expenditures. Charges will rise significantly due to all of these charges.
401K to Gold IRA Rollover Guide
The method is straightforward as long as you have the guidance of an experienced and trustworthy gold IRA provider. Continue reading to deconstruct each step so that you get the best results possible:
Find a Gold IRA Provider
In contrast to a standard IRA, which generally contains stocks and bonds, a gold IRA maintains precious physical metals, often in the form of bars and coins.
Precious metals vendors are an excellent resource for individuals nearing retirement and those who want to read up on such valuable assets.
In addition to providing knowledge, credible gold IRA companies, like those on our list, will guide you through your new account activation, selecting a professional custodian, picking the right gold items, and determining where they will be stored safely.
Identify Your Self-Directed IRA Custodian
The trustee of the gold IRA must be identified at this stage. Rules and regulations allow individuals to store gold in their own Individual Retirement Account (IRA).
All activities are processed and disclosed to you and the IRS by a custodian for your gold IRA fund. The custodian is responsible for coordinating the purchase and sale of the valuable metals you want to buy and finalizing all payments.
When opening a physical gold IRA, be confident the company you may want to invest with is expressly set and equipped to accommodate a "self-directed" IRA. A self-directed IRA empowers the account owner to take control of their physical assets inside that IRA.
Activate Your Account
Now it's time to launch your new gold IRA account so that the company that will handle it can get to work. The custodian must coordinate with the gold or silver provider to let you purchase precious metals.
It is necessary to put money into your IRA before buying precious metals. You may transfer funds via bank transfer, check, or cash.
The custodian may advise you of your annual investment limit when you open your account, or you may need to figure it out using the IRS web page details. Since it is regularly updated to account for depreciation and other factors, your age will affect the maximum amount you can spend.
Conduct an IRA Rollover
Next, you'll need to move the money from your current retirement plan into a gold IRA rollover account. Your previous IRA custodian may send the money directly to your new custodian in a direct rollover. Or your previous retirement account's holdings are sent to you straight, with the intention that you'll conduct the IRA rollover yourself. You may need to file additional papers as proof. Specialists prefer a direct rollover as it takes less paperwork and time.
Buy Gold Through Your IRA
You can now instruct the custodian to purchase whichever valuable metal items you want. I recommend opting for any of the four companies mentioned above to reduce the risk of being scammed. Furthermore, go through the IRS guidelines to decipher for verified and acceptable gold products.
When it comes down to it, you're the one who has to decide what you want to put in your precious metals IRA. Your gold IRA custodian should provide you with all the appropriate paperwork to ensure your purchase is authenticated.
To ensure your precious metals arrive safely at the guarded storage unit, find out how they'll be sent and whether they'll be insured during the journey.
Final Thoughts - 401k to Gold IRA Rollover
After establishing strict criteria and evaluating multiple gold IRA companies, this list narrows it down to just the top four in the industry. These companies have received high rankings and positive client reviews, adopted transparent pricing, and want the best for their investors.
Augusta Precious Metals stands out with its promise of asking for minimal fees and ensuring a refund in case of client dissatisfaction. Furthermore, Augusta's vow of lifetime customer support highlights its commitment to its clients' well-being and consequent economic prosperity. Definitely consider this company for world-class service assistance in rolling over your 401k to a gold IRA.