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Gold IRA Guide – Where To Start & What To Know

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Summary: This is an official gold IRA guide and today you’ll be learning everything there is to possibly know about a gold IRA aka individual retirement account. Whether you’re a seasoned investor looking to reallocate things

Do you want to add value to your retirement portfolio? Are you planning to invest in Gold IRA? Then, this beginner’s guide to Gold IRAs is perfect for you. 

Today, people have more investment opportunities than ever before. They do not need to focus on a single type of investment. 

Historically, physical gold has been valued as one of the world’s most important resources. The precious metal’s demand has been high for centuries, and there is no clue for slowing down any time soon.

People who want to secure their financial future by investing in physical gold and other physical gold take advantage of Gold IRA. Keep reading to get to know more about Gold IRA and discover the power of precious metals investments! 

Gold IRA Guide


What is a Gold IRA?

Gold IRA (Individual Retirement Account) is a type of self-directed IRA that allows investors to invest in gold bullion for retirement. It is based on the value of physical gold and other precious metals owned by the account holders. It is the same in many ways as a conventional IRA or Roth IRA in terms of the control level in their individual retirement account and the different benefits, rules, and regulations that come with it. 

Opening a Gold IRA enables people to invest in alternative assets like cryptocurrencies, physical precious metals, and real estate. Also, it allows them to invest in different assets related to physical gold and other precious metals. These can be bonds and stocks from companies directly mining physical gold or offering EFTA for precious metals. 

Since Gold IRAs follow similar general rules as traditional IRAs concerning tax benefits, investors can choose a Roth IRA or standard IRA contribution limits and withdrawals. On the other hand, IRA implements additional record-keeping and tax reporting requirements for Gold IRAS because of the more complicated assets they hold. 

Gold IRA Requirements 

Large traditional brokerage companies do not offer gold IRAs. Instead, many investors work with custodians specializing in gold IRA administration. Custodians help them manage all the paperwork and tax reporting associated with gold transactions to meet the IRAS retirement planning requirements.

Moreover, custodians manage the unique storage needs of physical gold bullion. Please note that the IRS does not allow investors to store physical gold or other precious metals they own via a gold IRA at home.

Investors who want to take personal control of physical gold and other precious metals from self-directed IRAS can withdraw them. This makes them subject to early withdrawal penalties and taxation. The IRS also has the power to shut down an entire Gold IRA account.

Specific Gold IRA rules mandate that investors store eligible physical gold and other precious metals with a national depository, a third-party trustee, or a bank approved by the IRS. Custodians can refer investors to an approved facility and handle the gold transfer as part of the Gold IRA setup.

When buying precious metals for Gold IRA, investors can transfer cash into their account to fund the physical gold purchase after opening a self-directed gold IRA. They can roll over their existing retirement accounts to their self-directed IRAs. They will not owe taxes on this option because the funds remain within a qualified retirement plan.

Moreover, Gold IRA investors can deposit cash every year, following the yearly IRA contribution limits. They can purchase physical gold for their Gold IRAs with the money in their account. 

Gold IRA Limit 

One of the most significant advantages of opening a Gold IRA account is the potential for tax-free growth. This allows investors to own physical gold coins, silver coins, gold bars, and other precious metals not subject to capital gains tax. Gold IRA funds are also not subject to traditional income tax when withdrawn.

However, Gold IRAs also involve contribution limits. For example, each account holder can contribute up to $5,000 per year. But this limit increases if they are 50 or older or are qualified retirement plan beneficiaries. 

Gold IRA funds are also eligible for a rollover at any time. In other words, investors can send their funds to a new account. 

Benefits of a Gold IRA 

Why open a Gold IRA account? Are Gold IRAs worth the investment? 

If investors wish to control their assets and choose their holdings, Gold IRAs can be prudent. For instance, consider setting up a Gold IRA account if you are making retirement plans to keep silver coins, gold bullion bars, and other tangible items.

Suppose the physical gold frequently moves against other investments. Then, opening a Gold IRA account is a compelling idea. 

Below are the benefits of a Gold IRA:

Portfolio Diversification 

Many investors can diversify their portfolios with different assets, like ETFs, mutual funds, bonds, and stocks. Also, they can invest in physical gold and other precious metal via a Gold IRA. 

Since gold comes with a consistent demand, investors can flock to physical assets during financial uncertainties. They must build a well-diversified portfolio to obtain the necessary stability. 

Huge Profit Potential

No investment guarantees a 100% return to the investors. But gold investment is as close as they will get to having a sure thing on their hands. 

Gold IRAs’ huge potential for profit is backed by many centuries of positive growth in the precious metals industry. Physical gold has grown in value even amid global economic turmoil or uncertainty.

As long as investors have the patience to wait for their Gold IRA accounts to grow, they are guaranteed by the time of their retirement and cash out; their investment will be worth more than it is today.

Highly Liquid 

The real estate market and other investments can rival opening Gold IRAs when it comes to returns. However, these investments are difficult to liquidate as precious metals.

For instance, if investors suddenly encounter an emergency and need to access funds, selling a few precious metals from their Gold IRAs is a lot easier than selling a real estate property.

Hedge Against Inflation 

While bonds, stocks, EFTS, mutual funds, and other investments are vulnerable to stock market volatility and inflation, silver and gold are immune to all events in the world.

During times when inflation runs rampant, silver, gold, and other metals still do well in the markets. In short, while everyone is busy worrying about the economy, Gold IRA investors have a big chunk of their individual retirement accounts.

Tax Benefits 

Account holders can enjoy as many tax advantages with wise investment choices. This is because tax payments can be one of their biggest expenses.

But one of the great things about Gold IRAs is their tax rules are very similar to conventional IRAs. This means if investors are familiar with paying taxes for their Roth IRAs, they will not face any issues in terms of Gold IRAs.

For example, if they are aged 50 or above, the annual contribution limit is $6,000 to $7,000. Just like Roth IRAs, they only have to pay taxes when they make a withdrawal after reaching their retirement age. But they need to deal with the possibility of paying fines if they decide to withdraw before that time.

Gold IRA Account Control 

Managing your savings is not always quick and easy under the IRS’s watchful eyes. On the other hand, a self-directed IRA offers a lot more control compared to 401(k).

This allows investors to choose how they wish to manage their savings without the need to worry about hefty penalties. 

Gold IRA Interest Rates 

Gold IRAs come with the same tax advantages as traditional IRAS, allowing interests to accumulate tax-free until account holders are ready to retire. But as mentioned earlier, there are penalties if they choose to take a distribution before age 59 ½. 

Meanwhile, investors are allowed to use the IRA account to store various forms of assets besides precious metals. For example, if they want to invest in companies that directly mine gold, silver, and other metals by purchasing company shares. 

Investors can also leverage their physical gold to purchase government bonds, which are special contracts binding the state to pay them back plus interest after a certain period, regardless of what may happen.

Furthermore, if you are new to Gold IRA investment, here are additional custodian fees:

Account Setup Fees

Custodians often charge an upfront fee to launch a Gold IRA account, ranging from $500 to a few hundred dollars. But in some cases, custodians do not charge an account setup fee. This is particularly true if investors make a larger deposit, from $300,000 or more.

Seller Fees 

When people purchase physical bullion for their IRA accounts, the sellers usually charge a markup. This means they would be paying more than the gold prices.

However, this fee still depends on the type of physical gold and market conditions. Also, sellers may charge fees and commissions for handling the transaction, generally $40 per transaction.

Annual Custodian Maintenance Fees

Typically, custodians charge a yearly maintenance fee to cover the administrative expenses of handling the paperwork and overseeing the account. The flat fee can be from $70 to $300 per year. In some cases, companies charge more for larger accounts.

Storage Fees 

Precious metals owned in a Gold IRA should be stored in a secure location, notably, an IRS-approved depository. The more gold an investor owns, the higher the storage fee they need to pay. This can be a percentage or flat rate of the value of their IRA account.

Wire Transfer Fees 

If investors choose to receive or send money by wire transaction for their transactions, custodians might charge a fee to cover the cost: $25 per wire is standard.

Insurance Fees

Custodians generally lump insurance charges alongside the storage fee, which charges one flat rate or breaks it out separately. Investors can expect insurance and storage to cost between $100 to $300 per year, depending on how much gold they hold.

Cash-Out Fees 

If investors decide to close their account, custodians can charge a final cash-out fee of approximately $250. 

For new customers, custodians are sometimes willing to waive some of the above Gold IRA fees for the first 2-3 years, particularly if they have a large account balance. However, even with larger IRA accounts, investors could deal with extra charges they would incur once they held their money in a traditional IRA. 

Tips When Setting Up a Gold IRA Account 

Opening a Gold IRA account is considered one of the best retirement decisions someone could ever make if handled the right way. On the other hand, wrong decisions can lead to huge losses.

This is why ensuring the Gold IRA setup and management are done correctly. If you are ready to set up a Gold IRA account, here are some valuable tips:

Tip 1: Choose a Reputable Gold IRA Company 

Choosing the best and most reputable gold IRA company to handle your retirement funds is the first decision. Remember, an IR custodian has three primary duties:

  • Set up a Gold IRA account, whichever funding method you choose;
  • Manage your IRA account and give relevant advice;
  • Find a secure storage facility for metals.

You can find plenty of Gold IRA companies, so do your research and choose the one that best suits your Gold IRA investment needs. 

Keep in mind that custodians should have a lot of experience with regard to Gold IRA transfer issues and IRA restriction knowledge. They should also give tips on how to make the best of tax advantages.

When selecting the right Gold IRA custodians, consider customer reviews. You can take advantage of platforms like Business Customer Alliance and Better Business Bureau to determine if a particular custodian is reliable before making any commitments. 

Here are the top four gold IRA companies to invest with 

Tip #2: Fund the Gold IRA Account 

Funding the Gold IRA account is the next crucial step. The Gold IRA custodian must be hands-on in giving sound financial advice about the best possible way to find your account according to your needs and situation.

Here are the three primary ways to fund a Gold IRA account:

Rollover from 401(k) or Traditional IRA 

Initiating a rollover fund process from any existing retirement account to a new one is one of the most famous ways to fund a Gold IRA. You can roll over funds from your traditional IRA or 4019K). 

Although the process is straightforward and comes with plenty of benefits when it comes to costs, the IRS strictly controls it. Here are the rules you need to know to prevent penalties:

  • An account holder is only allowed to roll over once per year. If you have performed a rollover within the last 12 months, be sure to find another way to fund your Gold IRA account.
  • Whichever funds an account holder rolls over from an existing 401(k) or IRA are not allowed to sit in the account for over 60 days. Once you reach the 60-day rule, expect a fine of up to 10% of the retirement account value. 

Direct Fund Transfer

A direct gold IRA transfer is known for being tax-free. Also, the transfer can be done online, making it one of the most convenient ways to fund a Gold IRA account. But the process requires a bit of computer knowledge. The process takes a few days to be confirmed when everything is done correctly.

Cash Contribution 

Traditional check or cash payments are deposited directly into the Gold IRA account of your custodian. You can do it via simple bank transfer if you wish.

But please note that this method requires talking to a banker first to know how long it takes to complete the process alongside the associated transfer fees. 

Tip #3: Select Your Precious Metals 

After confirming your Gold IRA transfer, it’s time to pick the metals you wish to invest in. Gold is considered the safest and most attractive option, particularly for beginners. 

As you make your choice, make sure to pay attention to the precious metals’ purity and confirm the place the bars or coins were minted. 

Tip #4: Choose an IRS-Approved Depository 

Finally, you have to choose an IRS-approved depository. This depository must be licensed to hold gold or other metals that are part of retirement accounts. Custodians generally recommend one of the depositories they work with. 

The IRS-approved depositories are found across the country, like Delaware Depository in Wilmington. Make sure to pay attention to the storage fees. You should also verify if you must transport your precious metals.

Moreover, you should consider insurance. Your preferred depository should have insurance against destruction or theft before allowing it to oversee the precious metals storage.


If you think it’s time to diversify your investment portfolio, you can invest in silver, gold, and other precious metals by opening a Gold IRA account with the right custodian. You can reap plenty of benefits by having physical gold stored in a secure depository.

As you add precious metals to your investment and retirement plans, you can have peace of mind during a potential financial crisis. Do not forget to talk to a licensed financial advisor for better understanding.

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MF Metal Team

At MF Metal, we research and analyze retirement investment options for individuals who want to control and protect their financial future. We strongly focus on precious metals and gold IRA accounts.