Top 5 Gold IRA Companies in 2022 Reviewed
Life has been getting harder for many Americans. The cost of groceries, gas, electronics etc. has been skyrocketing. And right now, as you’re reading this, there are millions of people in the country who will never be able to purchase a home.
Believe it or not, this is where investing through gold IRA companies can make a difference to your finances. Think about it.
What if you could invest in an asset with a proven track record of retaining value? And what if we told you that this asset has been valuable since before the Founding Fathers had even come up with the idea of America?
That being said, you don’t want to send your retirement funds or your nest egg to just anybody. You need to make sure that you’re choosing the best gold IRA company for you.
And because we want your investment efforts to be successful, we’ve done our search and picked the best gold IRA companies in the country. Read on to see what they are.
We’re going to let you in on a little secret:
All gold IRA companies are not created equal. There are details like the customer experience, pricing and gold IRA fees that have to be considered as well. In our view, however, there are five top gold IRA companies that stand out above the rest.
1. Augusta Precious Metals
Founded in 2012, Augusta Precious Metals is a company that “gets” its customers. From its website to the process it has in place for establishing and contributing to a gold IRA, this gold IRA company has a knack for giving you confidence that your money is going to be safe. Here’s why:
Think of any subject that you or your kids might have learned in school. How many people would have learned physics or chemistry if the teacher had just handed you the textbooks and said, “Learn the subject matter.”? Augusta Precious Metals has plenty of free resources that are designed to help you understand the state of the economy, the value of a gold IRA, and the importance of using precious metals to protect your financial future.
Augusta Precious Metals is so efficient and reputable that Joe Montana, the Hall of Fame quarterback, chose this company as his precious metals dealer of choice. And with a Harvard-trained economist at the helm as director and a strong track record to recommend it, Augusta Precious Metals is the real deal when it comes to investing in gold. You can read our Augusta Precious Metals review for more details on the company.
- You get a world-class investor education from a Harvard-trained economist
- Great prices for gold and silver
- You can get assistance with building your investment portfolio
- Transactions are simple and straightforward
- $50,000 minimum order for IRA purchases
- Only able to pay by personal check or by bank wire
2. American Hartford Gold
Imagine you’re an employer looking for a new delivery hire and you’ve got two people in the interview room. One hasn’t had much experience delivering anything. And the other one says, “I’ve been doing this for the last ten years!”.
Even if Candidate A looks good on paper, Candidate B is hands down the most qualified. And believe it or not, the same logic can be applied to American Hartford Gold.
With $750 million in gold delivered to clients over the years, there’s no question that this gold IRA company has the resources and experience needed to accommodate any order you make. And that’s before we start talking about the company’s other qualifications.
For starters, American Hartford Gold is a family business. Their list of precious metals includes gold, silver, and platinum. In addition, they handle both physical delivery to your door and delivery to IRAs.
And as a company that has sponsored NASCAR while being a long-running favorite of Bill O’Reilly’s, American Hartford Gold offers a combination of trustworthiness and work ethic that’s hard to beat. In many ways, it’s not surprising that many American families are turning to this company for their precious metal investing needs.
- Social causes the company gives back to include the Wounded Warrior Project and No-Kill Los Angeles
- Able to deliver your gold right to your door if you make an eligible order
- Sell a variety of coins and precious metals
- Attentive customer service
- No minimum order sizes for cash deals and gold IRA accounts
- Free shipping
- Prices aren’t listed online
Goldco is another major player when it comes to precious metal IRAs. Whether you’ve got a traditional IRA, a substantial savings account, or a 401(k), this is a company that can help you make the right decision for your money.
Some of the major benefits that Goldco brings to the table include its emphasis on customer service and its commitment to trustworthiness. For these reasons, Goldco is highly recommended by Sean Hannity.
If you’re interested in protecting your wealth and hedging your finances against an inflationary dollar, you can’t go wrong with this highly rated company.
Check out our Goldco review for a closer look at what this gold IRA company has to offer.
- Accommodates gold IRA rollovers and cash orders
- More than a decade of experience within the precious metals industry
- Assistance from a company representative as soon as you sign up
- Has a buyback program for investors who want to cash out
- You have to know the market to ensure that you’re getting the portfolio you want
- Doesn’t carry an extensive product range
4. Advantage Gold
If you want to work with a precious metals dealer that offers a healthy combination of customer education and results, Advantage Gold is a company that does both extremely well. With a founding team that includes a former broker and an entrepreneur, this gold IRA company brings a unique combination of real-world experience and education to the table that many businesses would struggle to emulate.
In the event that you choose to invest in precious metals through this company, you’ll have the pleasure of working with customer service representatives who are extremely knowledgeable about gold IRAs and well-trained. And simply because of the high stakes involved with doing a gold IRA rollover, Advantage Gold also makes it easy for your custodian to arrange for the transfer on your behalf.
- Transparent pricing
- A buyback service
- Capable and experienced management
- Webinars and reports may occasionally have technical hiccups
5. Birch Gold Group
Founded in 2003 and proudly recommended by Ben Shapiro, Birch Gold Group is all about making it easy for hard-working Americans to invest in precious metals. They’re so committed to this that their customer service team will spend time on the phone with you to get a 3-D understanding of your financial goals. And then, once everything’s decided, the company’s IRA team will walk you through the process of transferring or rolling over your money into a gold IRA account.
With a combined resume that includes positions with the likes of IBM and Citigroup, Birch Gold Group’s team is as experienced as it gets. In addition, it also happens to have the right combination of customer-centric focus and experience needed to make investing in precious metals as easy as pouring a cup of coffee or tea in the morning. If you want the inside scoop on this precious metals company, read our Birch Gold Group review.
- Friendly, knowledgeable, and patient customer service
- Secure storage options
- Gold IRA specialists are available to assist with your account whenever you need them
- The company has a competitively priced buy-back program
- $10,000 minimum deposit required
How to open a gold IRA account
Find a gold IRA provider
No matter how much you want to invest in precious metals, your journey starts with finding the best gold IRA company. Here are some tips that can help you find the right business to partner with:
Look for a reputable company
Contributions to a precious metal IRA can easily cost thousands of dollars. While it’s highly unlikely that an IRS-approved gold IRA provider would be outright prone to theft, gold IRA companies can have poor reputations within the industry. Or, alternatively, they might not be known for ripping people off, but they might be inexperienced and less knowledgeable about the process as a result.
Although we all have to start from somewhere, you don’t want to be some new company’s guinea pig. By working with a reputable gold IRA company with an established track record, you can save yourself a lot of pain and heartache.
Gold IRA company reviews
A gold IRA company can be amazing while still not being the right fit for you on a personal level. And to make matters even more complicated, sometimes the only way that you’ll be able to find out what it’s like to work with a company is by reading gold IRA reviews.
Look at the negative reviews. And then look at the positive reviews. Are there any ongoing themes that rub you the wrong way?
Maybe the fee structure isn’t clearly explained. Or perhaps customers are disappointed with the receipt they get back while still being thrilled with the company overall.
The gold IRA companies we’ve just listed are all highly rated by the Better Business Bureau and Google, among others. As you create your personal shortlist, you’ll want to give yourself a bit of time to dive into the customer feedback.
Look For a Company That Understands Precious Metals
Have you ever done business with a company that primarily did one thing but offered other services or products on the side? Like a coffee shop that offers reheated muffins or an artist that gift wraps their paintings, sometimes there are questions of expertise and quality around those incidental services.
Because of the stakes involved with gold IRAs, the last thing you want or need is to deal with a gold IRA provider that’s just not ready for prime time when it comes to precious metals. If you’re on the phone with folks and you’re starting to get the feeling that you understand the precious metals market better than the customer success team does, don’t feel bad about moving on to the next company. After all, mistakes during this process might affect your taxes and your retirement costs.
Pick the Best Custodian and Depository Service
Remember what we said before about how most precious metals investors are legally required to keep an arms-length distance from their IRAs? This is the direct consequence of that particular set of rules and regulations.
In layman’s terms, the custodian is the person who makes the purchases on your behalf. And the depository is the storage facility that will physically house the gold until you’re old enough to claim it.
Because you might be looking at a time period of several years or even decades before you can take the gold, you’ll want to make sure that both the custodian and the depository service are top-notch.
On that front, the good news is that gold IRA companies for the most part understand that most people don’t have a curated list of storage services or trustees just sitting on their kitchen tables. As such, it’s not unusual for most gold companies to have partnerships and recommendations with multiple providers.
Even so, however, you’ll still want to do some research of your own during this process. Is the custodian responsive and friendly over the phone? How transparent is the depository service? Is there a flat fee or do the rates scale up depending on the size of your account?
These are the kinds of questions that you’ll want to figure out before you sit down and make your final decision.
Transfer your funds
At this stage, things are finally coming together. You’ve chosen a gold IRA company with a sterling reputation and an easy-to-understand process. And after some consideration, you’ve got the depository and the custodian that you want unless you’ve opted into home storage.
Now it’s time to fund your gold IRA account
With most gold IRA companies, you have a few funding options at your disposal. You can do a rollover of your traditional IRA or you can simply opt for a transfer. Plus, if you happen to have a bit of cash on hand, it’s also possible for you to make your purchases that way as well.
Of course, if you’ve been thinking about converting your 401(k) into a self-directed gold IRA, you might be taking an unconventional financial step. After all, many Americans prefer to step back and let bankers and investment managers handle their funds.
But if your goal is financial freedom, there are many strong reasons to move forward with the conversion. And if the 401(k) is your best source of long-term investment funding right now, it may be worth your while to pull the trigger.
Let’s say that you’ve completed your transfer and you’re ready to start buying gold. Here’s the part where you work with your gold IRA company to explore your investment options.
Many gold IRA companies will sell coins as well as bars. Are you looking for a Royal Canadian Mint coin? Do you want a smaller number of bars with a side of silver or platinum for variety? Do you want gold bullion or silver coins. Will you be making major purchases every year or putting aside a certain amount each month?
Here’s the part where you can take control of your financial future and start putting growing your investments.
Why invest in a gold IRA?
Now more than ever, Americans have to be ready for anything. It seems like every few months, there’s another devastating hurricane or market setback. If you’re in your 30s or 40s, there’s no way to predict what the country will look like by the time you’re ready to retire.
As such, the time to invest is now. And here are just a few of the reasons why more and more savvy investors are making precious metals a part of their portfolio:
► Gold has a strong track record
No matter which way you slice it, gold has a rich history that goes back to the Ancient Egyptians and more. People have used it for jewelry and trade for almost as long as the concept of money has existed.
We might not know what’s going to happen in the future, but we can be fairly confident that gold will still be able to retain its value even if the US dollar is down for the count. This, in turn, makes it easier for you to be confident in your investment decisions as you grapple with the idea of making physical gold a part of your retirement strategy.
► The economic future is more uncertain than ever
Even before 2020, many people were struggling to keep their heads above water financially. In these difficult times, putting money into the ever-fluctuating stock market is a recipe for long-term ruin.
Plus, if you have the misfortune of retiring in the middle of the next great recession or Depression, the money you’ve worked hard for just won’t have the same purchasing power. A Gold IRA is known as a reliable value hedge in part because it tends to become more valuable during times of heavy inflation.
With a gold IRA, you can weather the bad economic storms and come out better for it.
► You can provide for your family no matter what
There are few situations more heartbreaking than not being able to make a sandwich for your children and grandchildren. Not because you’re scared that they’ll lose their appetites, but because you just don’t have the money to give them the nourishment they need.
The beauty of a gold IRA is that with a little bit of forethought and planning, you can keep your finances steady even during times of major economic upheaval.
As individuals, there isn’t always much that we can control. But with the help of a precious metals portfolio, having a legacy to pass down, or at the very least, being able to finance a sudden hospital stay or period of unemployment, isn’t just a nice idea in theory. It’s a financial decision that you can actively choose to make.
Additional info about gold IRAs
Does all of this have you fired up and ready to give precious metal investing a try? If so, there are some additional details you’ll want to know about owning a self-directed gold IRA:
► There Are Multiple Ways to Invest in Gold
From cash savings to gold IRA investments, there’s no single way to become a full-fledged gold investor. You can start with gold stocks while working your way up to physical gold. You can jump straight into purchasing coins and bars. Or, if you’re so inclined, you can invest in a combination of paper investments and physical investments with your savings or your IRA funds. It all comes down to making sure that you understand the function that each investment option will have in your portfolio.
► Don’t Forget About Taxes
Whether you’re rolling over your traditional IRA or you’re paying with cash, investing in gold IRAs comes with tax implications. Although your contributions will often be considered tax-deductible in the short term, you may be expected to pay capital gains taxes when you cash out. If there’s a government agency that you don’t want to have problems with, it’s the IRS. As such, you’ll want to read up on how your gold IRA investments may affect your tax situation.
► Precious Metal IRAs Have More Flexibility Than You Might Think
When most people hear the words “precious metal IRA”, they automatically think about gold. But in many cases, it’s not unusual for precious metal investors to purchase metals like platinum or silver to go along with their gold. And the flexibility doesn’t stop there. Even though gold IRAs are designed to be left untouched for decades at a time if possible, there are early withdrawal penalty exemptions that allow you to:
- Cover higher-education costs if you decide to go back to university
- Take out funds if you have to pay for medical expenses after surgery or a hospital stay
- Maintain your health insurance if you lose your job and go through an extended period of unemployment
- Withdraw funds if you ever have a permanent disability that makes it impossible for you to work
The IRS understands that life happens to the best of us. If you’re subjected to the unthinkable, you can rely on your gold IRA as a financial resource if you need it.
► Gold IRAs Do Have Their Limits
If you’ve been reading along and thinking, “Why don’t I just put all my money into a gold IRA right now?”, you should know that I cap your annual contributions and withdrawal opportunities are capped. For most people, you can only invest $6,000 a year. But if you’re over the age of 50, that annual number goes up to $7,000. If you intend to withdraw funds because you’re retiring, you won’t be able to do so without early withdrawal penalties until you’re 59.5. Although once you hit 70, making withdrawals from your IRA will be a requirement.
If you’re looking to invest in precious metals, you’ll have to find a gold IRA provider that you can trust. However, with so many different gold IRA companies putting up advertisements and promoting themselves as the best in the business, it can be hard to know who’s telling the truth and who’s got a great marketing team.
We’ve put together a list of the 5 best gold IRA companies that all have great track records, fantastic customer service, and excellent reputations in and around the industry. Whether you’ve got a lower minimum deposit amount or you simply need to speak with a company representative who can explain things to you a little bit more in-depth, we’re confident that you’ll be able to find the right fit for you within our list of recommendations.
Frequently Asked Questions About Gold IRA Investing
What are gold IRAs and how do they work?
In technical terms, a gold IRA is an individual retirement account that invests in gold. However, because these funds fall under the larger umbrella of what’s known as a precious metal IRA, it’s not unusual to see people purchasing silver and platinum along with gold.
Either way, however, these investment accounts will typically take the form of a self-directed IRA. What this means is that instead of the investment managers at the bank handling your funds, the purchasing and selling decisions will be made by you. Simply because this is a bit risky if you’re not familiar with the assets you’re purchasing, it’s highly recommended that you do your research before you go this route.
What are the benefits of a gold IRA account?
By our count, there are a number of strong reasons why hard-working Americans, like you, should consider opting for a gold IRA:
1. It’s one of the best long-term buys you can make
When you’re investing for fun and profit in the short term, you don’t have to think too hard about whether Company X is going to be around for the long haul. But when you’re looking at cashing out on your profits in 10, 15, or 25 years, however, you don’t want to be investing in trendy assets that don’t have staying power.
Say what you will about purchasing gold, but if there’s one thing that we’ve all learned from the past several thousand years of human history, it’s that gold has staying power. You won’t have to spend time waiting breathlessly for the next market crash. And you won’t have to bother worrying about your assets until you’re ready to retire.
Whether you’re planning to cash out, hold, or let your younger relatives inherit your gold over the long term, you’ll never have to worry about finding buyers, losing your wealth, or engaging in day-to-day trades when you have a gold IRA. You can just let the money sit for a few decades and watch your net worth grow.
2. You can start experiencing the tax benefits today
If you’ve been investing in traditional IRAs this whole time, then you already know how your contributions are treated during tax season. One of the advantages of having a gold IRA is that you can get all the security and peace of mind that comes with investing in precious metals alongside the standard tax deductions that are associated with self-directed IRAs. It’s a win-win on all fronts.
3. You Can Have More Control Over Your Financial Future
Would you take a random person off the street and trust them with your nest egg and your retirement hopes and dreams? Of course not! But when it comes to retirement planning, far too many Americans are content to just go with the flow.
For those who have traditional 401(k)s and IRAs, you have no say in how your money is being managed on a day-to-day basis. And if you’re one of the people who was astute enough to look at the economy and say, “This isn’t moving in a positive direction.”, then you’re already ahead of the curve when it comes to assessing larger economic trends.
With a gold IRA, you have the final say in your investment purchases. And if being able to take matters into your own hands while protecting your finances is important to you, precious metal and gold IRAs will probably be especially appealing to you.
Okay. Let’s say that you’ve fallen in love with gold and silver. So much so that even after purchasing gold coins and bars , you still don’t feel like you have enough.
Should gold ETFs and mining shares be a part of your investment strategy?
In many ways, traditional stock investments have a lot going for them. For starters, they’re often more convenient to purchase. And for another, storing and tracking your share certificates is easy. In addition, depending on your broker of choice, purchasing gold mining shares or precious metals ETFs is often also cheaper. However, gold-related stocks and physical gold have a few key differences that you’ll want to be aware of:
1. Gold Shares Don’t Necessarily Reflect the Value of Gold
If you’ve spent any amount of time in investing circles, you’ve probably heard people say that share prices don’t necessarily reflect the worth of your underlying asset. Why? Because the value of your stocks will ultimately depend on investor confidence.
As such, you could be invested in a company that’s doing everything right. But if other investors don’t see it that way, you may never see the potential of that company reflected in the value of your portfolio.
Conversely, you could be invested in a seemingly foolproof ETF. If there’s a scandal or if there’s a major downturn, however, the value of your shares could sink even while the value of gold goes up.
While gold-related shares can certainly help you hedge your stock portfolio, it’s important to know that the value of your shares will probably be affected by factors other than the price of gold.
2. You Can Only Cash Out if You Have Buyers
Although people will often talk about selling their investments to fund their retirement, there’s a dark side to this strategy that many folks aren’t aware of:
You can only sell shares that have demand. If you’ve purchased mining stocks on a slow exchange or if you’ve purchased a stock that no one wants to buy in 20 or 30 years, you won’t be able to turn those shares into cold, hard cash very easily.
When you’re invested in precious metals, however, you will never have to worry about finding buyers. And if you sign up with a gold IRA company that offers a buy-back program, the process of going from “I own this.” to “I just sold this.” becomes a lot smoother for you as an investor.
3. Buying Stocks Takes Time
Here’s the thing about investing on the stock market:
Analyzing a company is a time-consuming endeavor. First, you have to go over the company’s historic and current financial performance. Then, you have to take a look at the management team before evaluating the company’s long-term potential. In short, it’s a lot of work. And although gold is famous for retaining its value in difficult times, the same can’t necessarily be said for gold companies across the board.
What happens if the company’s mining equipment breaks down? What if that particular company runs out of easily accessible gold?
Gold ETFs and companies can certainly help your investment prospects. But it often requires work and research while also being subject to the whims of the stock market. For these reasons, gold stocks aren’t an exact substitute for purchasing physical gold.
Will I have to pay capital gains tax?
The short answer is, “Mostly, yes.” According to Investopedia, the capital gains tax rate for physical gold is matched to your marginal tax rate. At first glance, this might not sound like a good deal. But if you happen to be in a higher tax bracket, you’re in luck.
Why? Because the maximum amount you can pay on capital gains tax is 28 percent. In the 2021 tax year, people making over $164,925 paid a marginal tax rate of 32 percent. If you’re in that category, the income from your capital gains is actually taxed below your marginal tax rate.
Where the “Mostly” part of “Mostly, yes.” comes in is if you cash out within a shorter time frame. If you’ve made a successful swing trade or simply cashed out at an earlier date than expected, you’ll be taxed at the regular rate for your income level.
How Can I Store My Gold?
As a general rule of thumb, the gold you’ve purchased for your IRA will need to be held in an IRS-approved storage facility. On most websites, you’ll see these storage companies referred to as “depositories”.
The IRS has standards for both the fineness of the gold as well as the companies that will be in charge of storing it. However, depending on your circumstances, you may be able to store your gold in a bank’s safe deposit box or a home safe.
What Are the Rules for Investing in Gold IRAs?
Have you ever noticed that in any situation where money’s involved, there are a bunch of government rules and regulations around it? Gold IRAs are no different in this regard.
We’ve got a more extensive list of IRA rules and regulations that you’ll want to check out, but with precious metal investments most of the restrictions will revolve around two issues:
Gold IRA Custodians
Even though the gold will technically be owned by you, it likely won’t be possible for you to have the items shipped straight to your house and into your closet if you’re investing through an IRA. But at the same time, investors should be able to add precious metals to their portfolios without having to wonder if they’re being robbed on the side.
To satisfy everyone’s interests, there are rules about who’s allowed to act as a precious metals custodian. These are companies that have can legally handle your account and do the heavy lifting involved with executing your transactions. If you want to have your gold on hand at home, we have a tutorial on precious metals IRA home storage that’ll tell you what you need to know.
Precious Metal Storage Requirements
Along with requirements around who can handle the gold and execute your purchases, there are also rules about how IRA precious metals should be stored. As such, the depository you choose must have IRS-approved storage vaults.
Once you reach the age of 59.5, you can take custody of your gold. On top of these major categories, there are also rules around annual contribution limits, early withdrawals, and taxes that we’ve touched on earlier in this article.