Last Updated on April 19, 2023 by Ben
If you fear inflation, investing in precious metals can serve as a hedge to diversify your portfolio. Instead of only relying on stocks and mutual funds alone, substantial funds like precious metals are an excellent way to mitigate risk.
Not only that, but individual retirement accounts (IRA) are also tax-deferred. If you want to open a physical silver IRA, read this article to learn more about them.
At a Glance Rating:
Get expert advice with the Best Silver IRA Companies Guide
1. Augusta Precious Metals: Editor’s Choice – Great gold IRA Company Overall (4.9/5)
2. Red Rock Secured: Runner up – Best at Home Gold IRA (4.8/5)
3. Goldco: Great Buyback Program (4.6/5)
4. American Hartford Gold: Best Prices on Bullions (4.5/5)
Top 5 Gold IRA Companies Review
Augusta Precious Metals: Editor’s Choice – Great Gold IRA Company Overall (4.9/5)
Unlike most precious metal IRA companies which release you from obligation once you’ve made your payment, Augusta Precious Metals doesn’t see you as a mere “transaction.”
Augusta will stay with you on your investment journey long after you make your first purchase. They provide extensive information about the precious metal products they offer.
Our team discovered an even more thrilling fact: a Harvard-trained economic analyst leads their precious metal professionals. Setting up an account with Augusta won’t leave you hanging in the air.
Their team of professionals is always ready to answer your basic questions about investing in Gold and silver. They even develop educational materials, videos, and emails to keep you updated on the latest news in the precious metal industry.
You also don’t have to worry about the stress of endless paperwork because they do it for free! Custodial paperwork is free of charge from the instant assets are transferred to when you liquidate them.
However, administering your silver or gold IRA comes at a minimal fee, almost negligible. Your custodian can provide essential services for a fair price of 250 dollars in the first year and 200 dollars in the following years.
Furthermore, the order desk at Augusta can assist you in buying additional silver and Gold whenever you feel like it.
- Comply with both federal and state laws/regulations
- Instructional video library
- Recorded calls as proof of purchase
- The order desk will assist in new purchases
- No guaranteed buyback
- Appreciation of precious metals is not guaranteed.
Goldco: Great Buyback Program (4.6/5)
Goldco is a company to provide more Americans with financial security using precious metal IRAs.
To help grow the retirement funds of their customers, they make investing in precious metals more simple. A private company based in Los Angeles with more than a decade’s experience assures its customers that they are safe.
Goldco believes in diversifying your portfolio as a strategy for your retirement savings. Drawing from experience, the terms of the agreement are beneficial in considering a long-term investment.
Rest assured that Goldco lets you review and approve theirs before you sign any business agreements.
The company also offers many options to fund the account you open with them. You can mail them a check to their address or transfer the funds via a bank wire for the more modern option. You will pay no shipping costs if you pay by check since they will ship you a FedEx shipping label for your convenience.
Goldco’s process is very straightforward. Once you successfully funded the account, select which precious metals you’d like to be part of your IRA. From that point, you have two options: transfer the coins to an insured depository or let them deliver them to your doorstep.
- Offer direct sales of Gold and silver
- Offers a buyback program at the highest price
- Coins can be shipped directly to you
- The company has relationships with established mints
- Lacks options for platinum and palladium products
- Lack of experts for consultation
American Hartford Gold: Best Prices on Bullions (4.5/5)
American Hartford Gold offers Gold, silver, and platinum products. Their services include the delivery of precious metals directly to you or your retirement account: 401K, IRA, or TSP.
Our analysis revealed that this company is one of the few that provide quality service at a reasonable price.
They offer a Buyback commitment, encouraging clients to inform them first if they wish to liquidate their assets. Although there is no complete assurance that they will purchase those metals from you, at least they don’t charge additional fees if you wish to do so. They aim to satisfy the customer consistently and continually provide transparency.
With American Hartford’s excellent service, the company now operates in two locations and hires over 100 individuals. A trailblazing leadership gained them the trust and respect of many Americans in growing their investments.
They also believe in their clients, in empowering them with knowledge. The company has a data center that provides information on the latest trends in the market.
Conveniently, the client is always kept in touch with an account representative and is equipped with precious metal charts to help them compare prices.
Because of the excellent service, the company has a 5-star rating on customer satisfaction on platforms like Google and Trustpilot. Prominent names like Rick Harrison and Lou Dobbs recommend the company above others.
- Precious metal products are IRA approved
- Offers delivery options (personal or IRA)
- The account manager answers inquiries
- Easy-to-follow purchase format
- Transaction fees are not well-indicated
- No palladium products are available
Birch Gold Group: Great Staff Overall (4.2/5)
Founded in 2003, Birch has since become one of the leading dealers of precious metals, serving across 50 states in the United States. Known for its effective team of financial managers and brokers, the company helps clients diversify their portfolios.
This company believes in being an open book to its clients. They want clients to be fully informed before they make investment decisions. You can ask their wealth managers questions, and they will answer without hesitation.
Birch also offers four precious metals: Gold, silver, platinum, and palladium. However, note that Birch needs a minimum purchase of 10 000 dollars when setting up your IRA. Immediately, a precious metal specialist will help you review your account and clarify any questions.
After thoroughly checking the IRS standard, you can select the metals, what kind, and how much of each. You can make the most out of the tax benefits by storing them through an IRA. Just ensure your custodian sorts out the paperwork to facilitate a smooth transfer.
Birch proudly collaborates with some of the biggest depositories in the world, Brink’s Global Service and Delaware Depository. Feel secure over the fact that these depositories offer insurance amounting to up to a billion dollars.
- Reputable track record
- The client matched with a precious metal specialist
- The In-house IRA department assists the client
- A selection of precious metals is available
- A minimum purchase of 10,000 dollars is needed
- No buyback program is available
What Exactly is a Physical Silver IRA?
Unlike regular IRAs, which mainly focus on stocks and paper assets, physical silver IRAs mean the same thing. It is a retirement fund but with silver. Having more than one helps to diversify your portfolio.
Gold and silver are both precious metals you can invest in, but silver is more valued for its higher volatility. Silver, an industrial material, gives them an advantage over the traditional option of Gold, whose use is more limited. The only downside of silver IRAs involves paying for the storage and insurance of the silver products you buy.
If you want to guard your wealth against inflation, using precious metals as a hedge is a great idea. Precious metals are not affected by the occasional inflation or deflation. These adverse events only have minor effects on your funds.
How to Open a Physical Silver IRA
Here are the following steps when opening your own silver IRA account.
Set Up a Fund
You have to fund a self-directed IRA as soon as you open it. You accomplish that through a bank transfer, mailing a check, or doing a silver IRA rollover of an already existing retirement account, like a 401k or a Roth IRA. The funding source is essential because most companies will insist on a minimum amount of purchase or fund for the IRA.
Looking for companies with the lowest fees and higher payout rates would be best. In return, the company will charge for the custodial service. The advice should come for free.
If you want to manage your traditional IRA on your own, you can do so. However, if you think you must do an excellent job, you can hire a broker to give you financial advice. The investment manager will supervise the IRA funds.
Find a Custodian
Many provide custodial services: banks, credit unions, and trust companies. Before you select a custodian to entrust your investments, check websites first to find information. Make sure to compare the listed offers and the service rates.
You will entrust all the paperwork to the custodian, so be careful in choosing one. The custodian has to maintain transparency at all times. All transactions must adhere to IRS regulations.
Choose the Dealer
If you buy physical gold and silver products outside of IRA companies, you can only accept them from the stock exchange or authorized sellers. You need to evaluate their reputation and credibility. Do your research to find reputable trade groups that can offer the best services.
Choose the Precious Metal
The silver products you will invest in should be averse to risk and offer high rewards. Test the authenticity of the silver bullion & coins you will buy. Again, the IRS has a set of standards to determine if the silver product is valid.
Look for a Depository
It will help if you keep your assets in a firm that stores silver products inside depositories. In most cases, the custodian also offers these services. Keeping physical precious metals inside your home is not advisable because thieves can easily steal them.
Besides, keeping them at home obligates you to pay taxes; you might even be penalized if you don’t follow the law correctly. You should only choose a storage or depository approved by the IRS.
Silver Coins and Bars Allowed in IRA
You must meet specific criteria to ensure the silver is eligible. IRA standards will only pass silver that is 99.9% pure; anything less than that will make it invalid.
As such, standard silver products are out of the question. Some investment coins, however, like Buffalos and Eagles, are more than welcome. Silver bars that score high in purity are also more than wanted.
Storage of Silver and Fees
If you want to invest in silver, you must know the costs. Since an IRA account is tax-deferred, only an IRA custodian can hold the account for you. Aside from the precious metals’ price, here are all the fees you must consider.
Account Application Fee
When setting up an account, the IRA custodian will ask you to pay at least 50 dollars to process the new silver IRA account or a 401k rollover. The rate of every custodian differs, but it shouldn’t be an overwhelming amount.
Sometimes transactions require you to wire the funds to a bank. The process might be necessary for paying dealers to transfer the silver products. Custodians will ask for a wiring fee to process your request, typically costing around 25 dollars or more for each outgoing wire.
Additionally, IRA custodians might ask for a transaction fee before they purchase the precious metals. Before you buy, make sure that you have thoroughly reviewed which silver bullion and coins you want to order in one go. Custodians often charge at least 40 dollars on a “per transaction” basis.
Annual Account Fees
Custodian service work by safekeeping the accounts and doing administrative work for the IRA account. Naturally, they charge an annual account fee. The fee can typically cost 75 dollars up to a hundred.
You can ask for a full disclosure report of the annual account fees in the paperwork. You can also learn more details from the information packet. Luckily, custodians sometimes offer discounts based on the account size you open with them.
Storing precious metals in a precious metals IRA account also requires storage fees. Likewise, custodians charge an annual fee to keep the precious metals. Prices vary depending on the depository, but it usually costs .5 to one percent annually.
Silver ETFs and ETNs
Silver exchange-traded notes (ETNs) and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) are generally better than mutual funds. Both track the price of silver, while most mutual funds don’t do so.
Ways to Invest in a Silver IRA
Opening a precious metal IRA is much more complicated than traditional and Roth IRAs. You must follow several steps to ensure your investments reap the rewards.
First, you need to find a custodian to keep the physical silver. The authorizer is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which approves reliable and reputable banks or trust companies. After deciding which custodian to trust, you need to find a precious metal dealer who, supported by the IRA custodian, will buy silver products.
It would help if you chose the precious metal dealer at your discretion, backed by rigorous research. Certain trade groups in the industry can provide you with additional information, so feel free to seek help from them. Even your custodian might already have established connections within the industry, but make sure you fully trust their recommendations.
After that, you need to select the silver products you like. Many coins exist, but the American Eagle Bullion Coin is the most common. The silver product must then go to a depository which should also be at par with the standards set by the IRS.
Finally, once a custodian, dealer, and depository are in place, you can confirm your purchase. The whole process is straightforward. The custodian will facilitate the payments, while the dealer will transfer the precious metal to the depository.
Why You Should Consider a Physical Silver IRA
If you have a fixed income and your portfolio heavily relies on stocks, consider silver IRAs to diversify your portfolio. Safe from the anxious fluctuations of the stock market, keeping some of your wealth in the form of silver is a good idea. You lower the risk of slashing your assets because of silver’s immunity to the volatile stock market.
Of course, no financial investment is safe from risks. Chief among them is the fearsome threat of theft. Luckily, you can mitigate them by looking for a reputable and IRS-approved company that can safeguard your prized assets and ensure the safety of each transaction.
Final Thoughts – Physical Silver IRA
After a careful analysis, our team believes that Augusta Precious Metals is the best company for long-term profit.The company doesn’t just abandon you after you set up an account with them. They will guide you every step of the way.
Augusta will provide you with all the information you need while opening a precious metals IRA. The company will answer all your basic questions about investing in precious metals. They also provide educational materials to update you about the latest trends in the market.
Opening an account with them is less stressful than most companies. Custodial paperwork is entirely free of charge! You don’t have to worry about keeping all your transaction documents safe.
Buying additional silver and gold is also easy. The order desk is always ready to assist you in the transaction. There is proof because the transaction calls are recorded with your permission.