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The stock market is extremely volatile these days and inflation caused by endless money printing and reckless government spending has caused more and more investors to seek the safety of precious metals to protect their retirement.
With the tremendous amount of precious metal companies out there, and how can you know who you can trust, and who has the most experience with these types of accounts, and the best service to their clients?
That's why we have thoroughly researched this industry and found the few companies meet our strict requirements for excellence.
These are the the best companies we have found through our research and feedback from our readers that have invested with these companies based on our recommendation.
Goldco - Our Most Popular
Goldco is one of the most trusted in the industry, and its precious metals specialists go the extra mile to make sure that both existing and potential customers receive all the information needed to make an informed decision.
Augusta Precious Metals
Exceptional level of customer service: 1000s of top ratings, 100s of customer reviews, and endorsements by conservative talk show hosts and hall of fame quarterback Joe Montana.
Known for one-on-one educational web conference designed by on-staff, Harvard-trained economic analyst.
American Hartford Gold
American Hartford Gold is a family owned company that made the Inc. 5000 list of America’s fastest-growing private companies.
American Hartford Gold is best for investors interested in bullion.
Lear Capital has been around for over 25 years and is a pioneer in holding physical precious metals in self-directed IRAs.
Birch Gold Group
Birch Gold Group has established a solid reputation for close to two decades handling physical precious metals.
Our #1 Choice
Goldco and its precious metals specialists go the extra mile to make sure that both existing and potential customers receive all the information needed to make an informed decision, which is why this gold IRA company is the one offering the best customer support of all the options on this list.
No other gold IRA company on this list goes to such great lengths to present investment information in an objective and organized way to gain the full confidence of the customer.
Goldco was founded in 2006 and it stands out in a variety of ways, but providing exceptional customer support is one of the ways it has built a reputation for itself.,
From setting up an account through their most recent transaction Goldco’s customers receive the “white-glove service” that includes direct access to a specialist to guide them each step of the way.
The company encourages customers to make the most of its extensive education center on its website. Goldco maintains an in-depth blog that covers a range of interesting topics in addition to the comprehensive list of videos and several e-Books.
The strong focus on customers is what has helped Goldco earn the highest ratings from both the BCA and BBB along with the almost perfect reviews on Trustpilot and Consumer Affairs.
You will have to get in touch with Goldco for additional information about account minimums, fees, storage, and custodians. The company will also offer you a free guide if you are willing to provide your name, email, and phone number.
Setting an account is easy and quick, done mostly online. Goldco also offers 401(k) and IRA rollovers to transfer in your existing retirement funds.
Real Reviews from Goldco customers:
"Wow what a great experience converting my 401k to a precious metal IRA with Goldco! My representative was awesome, informative, knowledgeable, and made the entire process completely stress free. Highly recommend Goldco!"
Doug 5 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot
"Goldco is outstanding. They took me through every process to rollover a couple 403b's from a previous employer. They explained every step and helped out fill out rollover forms. Can't say enough good things."
Lucas K. 5 out of 5 stars on Google
"I truly appreciate the time and effort your associates gave during this process. Every interaction was conducted by a knowledgeable account representative. Their guidance and professionalism exceeded my expectations.
This experience has provided me with peace of mind during our country's current economic climate."
Regina B. 5 out of 5 stars on BBB
"Two years ago I rolled over my 401(k) retirement plan into precious metals with Goldco. This event went off flawlessly so this year I sold a lot of my stock and again invested it into Precious Metals with Goldco.
This event went off so flawlessly and easy I would like to strongly recommend Goldco to all my friends and anyone that ask where they should go to invest in Precious Metals!"
- George of Cameron, NC, 5 out of 5 stars on Consumer Affairs
Best for gold education
The customers of Augusta Precious Metals not only enjoy low costs but also know exactly how much they are paying and for what. It is due to this reason that Augusta finds itself on this list due to its transparent pricing.
Pricing makes the difference much of the time when reviewing gold IRA companies. Companies regularly claim to have a low-cost fee structure, but only a handful ever reveal their costs.
Augusta’s pricing scheme and fee structure are not only straightforward but also transparent.
Augusta Precious Metals has built its reputation for integrity and transparency since it was established back in 2012.
It reinforces its customers’ confidence further by offering fair pricing, as well as 7-day price protection on premium coins and zero fees for up to 10 years.
The gold IRA account with Augusta is self-directed, which means that there aren’t any hidden management fees. For details on setting up the account, annual storage, and other fees, you will need to get in touch with the company.
The company also has a great buy-back program.
For its customers’ storage needs, Augusta Precious Metals has partnered with a highly reputable Delaware Depository that has vault locations in several places in the United States.
Overall, Augusta has exceptional customer service as evidenced in its high consumer ratings.
The company’s transaction and onboarding processes are turnkey, with agents helping customers with most of the paperwork required. Still, customers are unable to make purchases online.
The one other significant drawback of Augusta Precious Metals is the $50,000 minimum investment required to establish a gold IRA.
The company mostly focuses on silver and gold coins and bullion. Still, it is an attractive option for its transparent pricing scheme and easy IRA rollovers.
Real Reviews from Augusta Precious Metals clients:
"Given the current national and global situation, I had been considering in a precious metals IRA. With Augusta Precious Metals, it was a straightforward process and everyone I spoke with were generous in their time and in answering questions.
I felt in control of the decision-making process and was not pressured in any way. They were able to answer many questions in the educational webinar."
- Tina K rated 5 stars on Google
Best for Bullion Investors
Located in Los Angeles, California American Hartford Gold has achieved tremendous success in a short time since its founding in 2015.
American Hartford Gold specializes in creating physical precious metals IRAs for investors looking to protect against turbulent times for generations but they also work with clients that are looking to make individual purchases of gold and silver to have discreetly delivered to their doorstep.
American Hartford Gold works hard to provide customized solutions to help individuals and families diversify with the most reliable IRA-approved physical gold and silver products.
The company believes in education is the key to success for their clients. Because of this clients have access to their Data Center, live precious metals charts and constant access to an account representative.
The customer service team is at your service to answer your questions and make the process of acquiring gold and silver as easy as possible.
American Hartford Gold has transparent pricing and reasonable IRA fees. Specifically, they don't charge any IRA fees, but your self-directed IRA institution does and these fees are generally about $180 a year.
Depending on the size of your order, American Hartford Gold may be able to cover these fees for you. Be sure to ask a representative about this when you contact them.
As far as precious metals storage options are concerned, AHG can deliver the products discreetly to your doorstep for individual cash purchases.
For IRA purchases, clients can choose from a list of several IRS-approved depositories located across the country that American Hartford Gold can deliver directly to.
AHG has made it so opening an account online is easy, and only takes a few minutes. Their account representative will walk you through opening an account and filling out paperwork.
You can get your account created and funds transferred over in as short as 3 business days.
The minimum investment is just $10,000. This is among the lowest for precious metals IRAs and a good option if you only want to transfer a small portion of your IRA into physical precious metals.
4. Lear Capital
When it comes to understanding and managing risk, and knowing the importance of diversification that can be had with a precious metals IRA, Lear Capital has been a solid choice for our readers.
Lear Capital is a reliable and trustworthy partner that can help you achieve the goal of protecting your assets. Lear Capital is committed to transparency and integrity that puts your interests first and provides clear and accurate information.
The company exceeds expectations in this regard, providing a wealth of knowledge and expertise to help investors make informed decisions.
Lear Capital offers a wide range of options for investors, including gold, silver, platinum, and palladium, allowing for diversification within a precious metals IRA. They also emphasize the importance of physical possession of metals, as opposed to paper investments, which can carry higher risks.
Lear Capital ensures that investors' precious metals are stored securely in a private, non-government depository, providing peace of mind knowing that their assets are protected.
When it comes to customer service, they take the time to understand each investor's unique financial goals and tailor their recommendations accordingly.
Whether you are a seasoned investor or new to precious metals IRA, their team of experts is there to guide you every step of the way, providing personalized attention and support.
Lear Capital also offers competitive pricing and flexible investment options. They understand that each investor's financial situation is different, and they work diligently to provide solutions that meet individual needs.
This level of customization and flexibility sets them apart from other precious metals IRA providers. Lear Capital is a choice for anyone looking to protect their wealth with a precious metals IRA.
Their commitment to excellence, outstanding customer service, and extensive knowledge of the market make them reliable partners for investors who seek to safeguard their assets against market volatility and economic uncertainties.
For more on Lear Capital please read our full Lear Capital Review.
Best In Price
Birch Gold Group has established a solid reputation for close to two decades handling physical precious metals. The gold-medal team also puts its talents to work, helping with portfolio diversification using silver, gold, platinum, and even palladium.
Birch Gold Group brings significant expertise to the table, having honed its skills with leading corporations in tech and finance.
Backed by this breadth and depth of knowledge and coupled with a commitment to exceptional customer service, the company makes your gold IRA process easy.
The company has set reliable standards for customer empowerment, empathy, transparency, education, efficiency, and ethics. Responsiveness is crucial to the work of the Birch team.
If you have any questions, the team provides answers in a timely fashion to help you make informed decisions.
The company connects you with a reliable precious metals specialist. The specialist has a good understanding of the industry and will get to know your financial goals and dreams.
Both of you will then work together during your relationship with Birch Gold, building continuity and comfort.
The client testimonials and ratings of Birch Gold show the level of trust that customers have in the company. The team will work hard to gain your trust while you diversify your portfolio.
The company always puts you first: from resource sharing to helping you become a more knowledgeable investor to refusing to share your contact details with any third party.
Birch Gold has built its reputation on customer service as is clear if you read the online testimonials. The company has a BBB rating of A+.
The goal is utmost satisfaction with every interaction, which is why the company’s customer relations team will always follow up to ensure that you are pleased.
Gold has proven itself to be a source of stability with significant growth in recent years as compared to the stock market, which has been more volatile.
For this reason, retirement investors are increasingly using gold IRAs for diversification and hedging their portfolios against inflation and market volatility.
While the majority of investors prefer investing in more traditional assets, such as bonds, stocks, and mutual funds, the tax code also allows people to invest in precious metals such as silver and gold using specialized IRA accounts.
Most investors don't even know they have this option because most financial advisors pitch mutual funds which they get fees from.
Unlike traditional IRA accounts that can be easily set up and maintained using a custodian, setting up a Gold IRA account and maintaining it involves a more specialized approach.
What Is a Gold IRA?
Individual retirement accounts (IRAs) are not new. They are effective tools for safeguarding money to fund your retirement. The instruments have traditionally held assets such as bonds, stocks, or cash.
Gold retirement accounts were introduced in the investment market starting in the late 1990s.
These self-directed IRAs allow investors to choose precious metals such as gold, silver, palladium, and platinum to back the product.
Other self-directed IRAs feature assets such as art, cryptocurrency, or even real estate.
Like traditional IRAs, you have the option of contributing to a gold IRA on a pre-tax basis and grow value in a tax-deferred way.
The traditional and alternative precious metals IRAs both function on the same annual contribution maximums, liquidation regulations, and income limits.
These alternate paths to financial security as a senior citizen are usually more complex than traditional IRAs. The precious metals that you choose have to meet the exacting standards for fineness as stipulated by the Internal Revenue Service.
IRS rules don’t allow all gold products; just certain bars, coins, and bullion that meet the IRS requirements. The IRS doesn’t allow jewelry, even when it holds significant value.
You are required to store the precious metals backing your IRA in a special depository, which means that it is like buying gold without actually possessing it. The facilities must be approved by the IRS.
Using a storage facility that isn’t approved by the IRS can result in disqualification of your gold IRA.
Besides the more complex nature of managing your gold IRA, you will typically be charged higher fees than traditional IRA products. You must choose a firm that’s equipped to handle these unique precious metal IRA products.
The gold IRA providers usually charge setup, storage, and administrative fees, as well as commissions.
The benefit to gold IRAs is that they can guard against inflation and offer a way to diversify your retirement portfolio. A highly qualified gold IRA company will help you take advantage of these alternative investments.
Why Invest in a Gold-Backed IRA?
Gold IRA accounts make an excellent choice if you want to lean into alternative investment.
While the price of gold varies from one day to the next based on economic factors, the value usually trends upwards in times of upheaval or uncertainty. If you are thinking about retirement planning, this provides peace of mind.
Gold IRAs, just like the stock market or any other investment, have risks attached, but gold investing is historically more dependable. The greatest advantage to a gold IRA is the ability to diversify your retirement portfolio.
You might not earn dividends with your gold investment as you would with stocks, but gold IRAs provide some form of protection when facing inflation and recession. Gold usually goes up in value as paper assets go down.
Some industry experts are skeptical of the idea of precious metals IRAs or gold IRAs due to their more stringent IRS regulations, complex nature, and higher fees.
Furthermore, they suggest that if you would like to own physical gold or other precious metals you should just buy gold or silver bars.
If you don’t hold these assets in an IRA, there’s no need for you to bother with depository needs and complicated rules.
Gold IRAs can be an excellent option if you decide to diversify your retirement portfolio and protect yourself against economic volatility.
You should place a small portion of your funds, preferably below 10 percent in this alternative investment.
When you use a rollover to start your precious metals IRA or gold IRA, you will not be subject to the $6,000 ($7,000 for those 50+) annual limits set by the IRS.
Your financial advisor will help you decide whether gold will take you where you would like to go before reaching out to a specialized gold IRA company to take the next steps to make gold purchases.
Investing in options that give you financial security in retirement is prudent, especially when earning an income. IRA plans are an excellent option to consider when you want to build such financial security.
What is an IRA?
An IRA (individual retirement account) is a personal retirement savings plan with tax benefits and various investment options.
It is a top choice of savings for retirement for many investors. Individuals with 401k or 403b or access to other employer-sponsored plans can enjoy IRA tax perks to bolster their savings and increase their portfolio flexibility.
After your contributions match the employer-sponsored plan figures, an IRA could be the next bet to saving for retirement. Opening an IRA might make you enjoy a broader investment range than a 401k plan.
However, it is best to note that different IRAs are available, each with various contribution, tax, and withdrawal rules.
The common IRA types are the Roth IRA, Traditional IRA, and Rollover IRA.
You can contribute to a traditional IRA if you earn an income. The traditional IRA could have tax-deductible contributions. That means users can get an upfront tax break.
They must pay income taxes on traditional IRA savings when making withdrawals in their retirement days. Moreover, users must take RMDs (required minimum distributions) annually once they hit 72 years of age.
The Roth IRA requires users to contribute after-tax money (what you have on your income after paying taxes) instead of getting an immediate tax benefit. The savings are tax exempted, and you enjoy tax-free withdrawals in retirement.
The Roth IRA is subject to RMDs, meaning users can leave money in the account for future needs or to pass it down to designated heirs. However, Roth IRA users must have incomes that fall below a particular contribution limit.
The Rollover IRA allows users to move money from an old employer-sponsored retirement plan into an individual retirement account.
As the name suggests, users can "roll over" their savings which allows them to preserve the tax-deferred status on their retirement financial assets and not face early withdrawal penalties or paying current taxes when doing the transfers.
The potential tax benefits depend on the IRA type of choice and if you are RMD eligible.
Why Invest in an IRA?
You could need nearly 85% of your pre-retirement income for your upkeep in retirement. Therefore, a 401k plan during your employment might not suffice to accumulate the necessary savings for your retirement.
Nonetheless, you can contribute to an IRA and 401k, which raises the need to consider a fidelity IRA. But what can a fidelity IRA do for you? It can offer the following:
It is best to consider contributing the maximum amount if you are to get the most out of your IRA savings. Also, monitor the investments and make necessary changes as they arise, especially as your goals change when retirement draws closer.
What is a Required Minimum Distribution (RMD)?
An RMD (required minimum distribution) is the least amount you are expected to withdraw from your IRA plan to meet federal tax rules.
You must start making the withdrawal when you reach 72 years, and the money will be from traditional IRAs and certain tax-deferred retirement accounts.
How is the RMD Calculated?
The withdrawal amount depends on your account balance at the close of the previous year, and the IRS-provided life expectancy factor indicated in the ULT (uniform lifetime yable). The RMD is subject to annual changes depending on the two elements.
Any contributions and earnings credited to a 403b retirement plan before 1987 will see the users exempted from RMDs until they turn 75 years.
However, it is best to note that withdrawals taken before qualifying for the RMDs or withdrawals exceeding the required amounts will reduce the pre-1987 balance before any other impact occurs.
At What Time do You Need to Withdraw from Your Traditional IRA?
Traditional IRA users must start taking an annual distribution from their accounts no later than April 1 in the year after turning 72 years, irrespective of their employment status.
For instance, an IRA holder must take distributions by April 1, 2022, if they turn 72 years in the previous year.
Roth IRAs are not subject to minimum distribution rules during the holder's lifetime. However, the rules could apply to beneficiaries inheriting the holder's Roth IRA.
Please note that the lifetime RMDs exception does not apply to Roth-source amounts in your retirement plan. RMD applies to designated or select Roth accounts like accounts funded by before-tax contributions.
Gold is used as an insurance policy protecting against an over-financialized world. Gold is considered a safe financial asset.
Why Gold is Money
While money might not be built to be indestructible, it should be a solid commodity that does not evaporate when you are not looking or fall apart in your pocket. The currency should last, so we do not use other options like perishable goods.
Money must be convertible into smaller or larger forms without losing value when used in any transaction.
Money must retain the same look regarding its design to ensure it is recognizable, with each current identical to the next of its type and value.
It is why we do not make money from oil paintings or use such art pieces as money; each painting, even those composed by the same artist using the same materials and canvas dimensions, differs.
The same difference is evident in real estate hence why it cannot qualify for use as currency.
Good money has significant worth in its small, portable package. Consider how much water you would have to deliver when purchasing a property or car if you were to use it as money.
Conversely, how weighty would it be for your pockets to walk around with enough lead, aluminum, bronze, or copper coins to pay for your new house? You need money that offers convenience in portability because it holds its value irrespective of size.
Money is something people need for their daily life. It is a means of financial exchange. Anyone with gold knows that someone will consider taking it or offering it from something of value. We cannot use paper scraps for money even if they have unique inscriptions on them because they hold no value.
Benefits of Owning Physical Gold
Gold is an age-old investment form that has been used for decorative and ornamental purposes in prehistoric times. It later gained global recognition as a valuable currency.
The long history that gold has enjoyed as a valued commodity has seen investors consider it a financial haven. Gold has maintained its worth throughout history even as bonds, stocks, and other assets gain and lose value.
Experts say gold will likely gain more in the future because it is a safety net many investors consider during times of uncertainty.
Inflation erodes spending power, which is best exemplified when you spend more on something that would have cost less a few years ago—for instance, buying a loaf of bread at $3 when it was retailing as $0.50 back when your parents were kids.
Inflation can be attributed to increased fiat money from the central banks, like when there is more printing of currencies like the U.S. dollar baked by the central banks.
Such moves lower the value of investors' money, pushing them to purchase assets they think will gain value during inflation.
Money compared to gold enjoys less restriction, and expanding the latter is possible if more gold is mined. However, mining is costly and time-consuming. Moreover, the earth has less gold to be mined which defeats the objectives.
Market volatility is a risk that many investors face. Stocks are likely to gain value if you have a diversified portfolio or invest in index funds to smooth out volatility by mirroring diverse stock market indexes.
Stock investments can swing either way. They can gain value long-term and lose small or significant percent over a medium or short period. Such volatility is an issue that investors cannot overlook.
Gold has been less volatile over the long term than other investment securities such as silver. Hence, gold is an excellent option for investors who detest portfolio volatility.
Prudent investors appreciate the need to develop a diversified portfolio. They are aware of the risk of investing in one company because they could lose a substantial amount of the money they injected into the business if it fails.
Hence, purchasing shares in different ventures is a safety net cushioning them against losses when one business goes bankrupt.
Therefore, having several assets in your portfolio builds multiple diversification levels. For instance, investing in other commodities instead of only bonds ensure that you have a safety net when other assets gain value and the bonds tank.
So, having gold and other valuable metals in your portfolio bolsters the portfolio's resilience. It is a move that can offset potential losses in other assets as the metal holding gain.
People prefer investing in visual and tangible things. Modern investment options like bonds, stocks, ETFs, and bonds are electronic.
That means you might own shares, but they are reflected as numbers you can see and tally when logged into your account.
However, gold, silver, and other precious metals are tangible. Investors can purchase physical gold bullions they can hold in their hands or store in their safes.
Such tangibility appeals to many pessimistic investors about buying stocks and other options validated on paper.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Yes. The value of a gold coin will increase as the value of gold increases. Each coin’s face value (what’s printed on it) isn’t a true reflection of its value. Rather, the value is probably significantly higher based on gold’s current price.
The ideal time to buy gold is when it is priced lower. The value of gold is generally lower when the stock market is overperforming. Gold may also come down in price in some months, including April, March, and January.
You can invest in gold in several different ways. The first one is to buy gold bars or coins from a local coin shop or gold investment company. Hold the coins until you are satisfied with the growth in their value or you need the money for your retirement or another major expense.
Setting up a Gold IRA is another way to invest in gold. Gold IRAs are a form of Self-Directed IRA where funds are held in gold as opposed to traditional stocks and bonds. Setting up a gold IRA can be an excellent way to invest in gold or other precious metals without having to worry too much about taxes.
The answer to this question will vary depending on the individual based on their age, current financial position, as well as their personal preferences. If you are close to retiring, you will probably want to take fewer investment risks, which means that you might not necessarily want a significant percentage of your funds invested in gold.
If you are still young, however, you have more time and can afford to be a bit more aggressive with your investments and take greater risks, so you may decide to have a larger portion of your portfolio invested in gold.
You always have the option of chatting with your financial advisor and shifting investments around in your portfolio based on what makes sense at the time based on your personal financial goals and the economy.
Goldco and its precious metals specialists go the extra mile to make sure that both existing and potential customers receive all the information needed to make an informed decision.
Goldco is the best choice that we have found for IRA investments, as well as purchases of physical precious metals.
Work with a gold IRA company that charges NO FEES for up to 10 years! Take action today to protect your IRA or 401(k).
I started BMOGAM Viewpoints 15 years ago as a way to compile all my views on investing in one place. I own my home, have some real estate, and own a few stocks like most people, but what really drives my interest in investing is I have a strong love of precious metals, especially gold.