Has the recent global financial crisis and creeping inflation started you thinking about ways to strengthen your retirement accounts? When faced with uncertainty and volatile markets, many people work to diversify their holdings but aren't sure how to go about it.
One of the more effective ways of achieving diversification with an IRA is with silver. With a silver retirement account, also known as a self-directed IRA or SDIRA, you can put your financial assets to work more powerfully.
That's because your SDIRA can legally hold silver, gold, palladium, platinum, and other IRS-approved varieties of physical assets. After setting up a silver IRA, the best part is that you still get all the advantages of traditional IRAs, like tax-deferred growth.
How does a silver IRA (also called a "gold IRA," or "self-directed IRA") operate? First off, they're managed by you, not by anyone else. No bank, financial institution, or third party will decide what goes into the account or when. You, alone, are the one who makes all those crucial decisions.
But what if you don't feel as though you have the tax-related or financial skills to make those decisions? For some folks, it's a scary idea to decide which precious metals to put into an SDIRA and choose dollar amounts without professional guidance.
There's no need to worry because many respectable, trusted companies specialize in assisting people just like you set up silver IRAs. Not only do these companies take care of setup, but they also offer guidance about maintaining the accounts, storing the metals in secure vaults, and handling a small amount of paperwork.
How do silver IRA businesses earn a profit? Simply put, they sell silver to new account holders to produce income for their own companies. Our research team carefully examined the five primary companies in the silver IRA niche so you can learn all the pertinent details in one report, which follows.
Best Silver IRA Companies
With over a half-century of experience, Augusta Precious Metals is an industry leader, family-owned, and has experienced much growth in recent years. They specialize in setting up gold as well as silver IRAs.
You can also buy non-IRA metals from Augusta but keep in mind that you won't get any tax benefits on such buys. Every new customer gets their own representative to work directly with. This person will walk you through the whole account setup process and be your assistant as long as you are with Augusta.
The advantage of one rep per customer is an ideal situation for long-term investments like IRAs. You can either select your own custodian or let Augusta provide one for you. Always compare custodial prices, policies, and fees.
What do the reps do? They speak with custodians, deal with the IRS, communicate with the bank, and handle all the paperwork. Funding is usually by a direct rollover or via a bank transfer (by wire). Reps can help you select silver products as well.
All new customers get a price guarantee for seven days. Most companies do not offer this feature. If metal prices fall for the week after you buy-in, you can simply pay the lower price. There are bulk discounts for large metals purchases, and new clients automatically receive bonus silver for $2,000.
All storage facilities are in either Canada or the U.S., so you can choose any one of those that suit your needs. There's a one-time $50 fee for account creation and setup plus yearly custodian fees of approximately $180.
Goldco is our number-one choice for several reasons but primarily because they excel in most of the essential critical areas in the precious metals IRA industry.
Not only are their educational materials excellent, but they have top-rated customer service, a wide range of quality products, and fair prices. The company caters to new and experienced investors.
What you'll spend: $175 for annual storage on accounts under $100k. Above that, storage is $225. Additionally, there is an $80 yearly fee for account maintenance. Because the fees are not based on account size, except for the one threshold, they're relatively flat and highly competitive.
You'll need $25k to open an account, which can be a direct transfer from your existing IRA. And, new clients pay no annual fees for the initial year. The company runs a bonus program consisting of free silver coins when you first enroll. You can get up to $10,000 in free silver with a qualifying account.
All account holders have access to the company's market system that delivers relevant news about metals prices and economic trends. Goldco products are fully compliant with IRS guidelines, and the reps know precisely how to fill out all the paperwork for account setup.
Even though Goldco does not own storage vaults, they have teamed up with top providers who have IRS-sanctioned facilities for metals storage needs. Goldco also partners with crucial financial organizations that serve as IRA custodians.
The company's reviews are nearly perfect, and its reputation is excellent. Anytime there is a complaint, Goldco reps work hard and fast to resolve it. While the site does not show precise prices for metals, you can always get up-to-the-minute quotes from the representatives for whatever metals you're interested in.
The reps are friendly and totally helpful. You won't have to worry about pressure sales tactics. Finally, the Goldco employees are always happy to explain anything to you when you ask.
Since 2003, Birch Gold Group has been handling thousands of accounts for silver IRA clients all around the U.S. The experts at Birch have long years of experience in the precious metals and financial industry, and some are members of the prestigious Forbes Financial Council.
While they sell metals directly to all buyers, their specialty is IRAs for silver, gold, and other precious metals. There's even a Birch department specifically for IRAs, and it includes high-level experts in taxation, accounting, financial counseling, and more.
The Birch professionals explain everything clearly and accurately so you can set up your silver IRA quickly and with zero hassles. Their website's educational resources are second to none. Signing up is a breeze because the Birch experts assist you with selecting a custodian.
They also with those custodians for you. If you have no one in mind, Birch usually works with a custodian called Equity Trust.
After a quick set of paperwork and funding the account, you select the metal to place into it. Don't worry, Birch advisors will explain exactly which metals are IRS approved. Then your metals are shipped to a storage facility for safekeeping.
You'll always receive timely communications from Birch about your account. And, if you ever want a financial report, the company will provide you with a specialist to answer all your concerns. New accounts with more than $50,000 deposited pay no fees for the initial year.
Regal is the only company on our list that offers cryptocurrency (like bitcoin) in addition to gold and silver for inclusion in IRAs. Not only does Regal Assets rank high among investor reviews, but it also has a respected reputation on objective listing sites like the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and similar industry oversight organizations.
Many fans of the company enjoy the fact that they can fill out an online app to get started. You list the kinds of assets you're interested in, what your investing goals are, and your primary personal data. Then you send the form directly to the Regal experts.
This technique saves a lot of time because when the rep calls you, all you need to do to set up the account is verify your identity, fund the new account, and choose your metallic assets.
The company offers four essential portfolios. Each of the four comes with its own stated goals and minimum opening balance. Note that the lowest opening balance is $25k.
Regal Assets also offers non-IRA investments called "survival" packs. The first includes $5k of precious metals, and the other contains twice that amount. Pricing of all Regal's products is fair and industry-competitive. Some customers say that the company's maintenance and storage costs are lower than usual.
Finally, for investors who want to combine the stability of precious metals with the volatility of crypto, Regal is an excellent choice.
The main selling point of Noble Gold is the ease with which new investors can set up accounts. The company has taken all the hard work and hassles rolling over a standard IRA into a self-directed one. Plus, Noble makes it simple to sell any or all of your metal assets when and if you need quick cash.
When account holders want specialized advice, Noble can help them connect with one of the many financial consulting companies they work with. And, unlike most of their competitors, Noble Gold lists detailed prices on the main page of their corporate website.
Likewise, Noble never holds back information about fees. For instance, their website lists the $80 yearly account maintenance fee and the annual $150 for vault storage and insurance. There's never any guessing for new account holders.
Noble uses segregated storage for all metals owned by account holders. In other words, there's no mixing of customer assets. There's a chance you might incur an additional custodial fee if you select a custodian who charges one.
However, opening an account with Noble is as easy as placing a call to one of their reps, who will discuss the pros and cons of opening a silver IRA based on your particular financial situation and goals.
After researching the five top silver IRA companies, our primary recommendation is August Precious Metals. Within the industry as a whole, particularly the SDIRA niche, they are the most competent and trusted player, have the most five-star customer reviews, and provide a 1 on 1 web conference with Harvard educated financial analyst, something no other company has to offer.
When Augusta's clients speak with one of the company's customer service experts, they get all their queries answered in full and with the latest, most accurate information.
In addition, Augusta prides itself on the fact that every account holder has their customer service rep from beginning to end or from the time the account is opened until the account holder withdraws funds many years later.
If there is one other organization in the silver IRA sector that can directly challenge Augusta, at least in terms of client satisfaction and service, it is Goldco.
Goldco regularly and consistently receives highly positive feedback and ratings from current and former customers. They have many recent five-star reviews, which is different from total reviews.
Seasoned investors and those brand-new to the idea of setting up a silver IRA note that they are favorably impressed with the way Goldco operates. The company's top-notch client service, intelligent investment techniques, and convenient, fast way of setting up accounts is specifically mentioned by hundreds of verified customers.
Regal Assets can be an appropriate choice for people who desire to put their retirement assets into not only silver but also various forms of cryptocurrency.
However, while silver tends to demonstrate general price stability as an asset class, it's important to note that the same thing cannot be said for cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and others.
But, the ability to diversity a retirement portfolio with precious metals, like silver and crypto is what many investors like about Regal Assets.
If you listen to radio and TV financial programs, it's clear that many of the hosts and precious metals experts like Birch Gold Group, which typically waives the first year's account setup fees for investors who deposit $50,000 or more into their initial silver IRAs.
So, right from the start, Birch Gold Group customers can save several hundred dollars in fees.
All five of these silver IRA companies have in common that they have streamlined the setup of self-directed retirement accounts. In fact, within the industry, many companies are not on the up-and-up and seem to be in business for the sole purpose of earning high, unethical profits from investors.
Augusta Precious Metals is the number one choice, however, our team firmly believes that anyone looking to set up a silver IRA should consider one of the five companies listed above based on our extensive research. Should you choose to work with a company not listed among our top five, tread carefully and do plenty of research before investing your funds.