Tips for Buying Gold in an IRA

By | April 17, 2023

If you’re looking to diversify your retirement portfolio, investing in gold through an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) can be a smart move. However, buying gold in an IRA is not the same as purchasing physical gold bullion. There are specific rules and regulations you need to follow to ensure you’re making the right investments. In this article, we’ll provide you with some valuable tips on how to buy gold in an IRA and explain everything you need to know before making any decisions.

Tips for Buying Gold in an IRA: A Complete Guide for Beginners


Gold has been a reliable store of value for centuries, and people have been investing in gold for various reasons. Among them, holding physical gold in an IRA (Individual Retirement Account) is a smart way to secure and diversify your retirement investments. However, before you start buying gold in your IRA, there are a few things you need to know. In this article, we will provide you some valuable tips for buying gold in an IRA.

Importance of Buying Gold in an IRA

When you invest in gold through an IRA, you enjoy several benefits that you can’t get in any other investment. For example,

  • Gold is a hedge against inflation: As the value of currencies fluctuates, gold holds its value over time.
  • Gold provides diversification: Holding physical gold in an IRA along with other investments like stocks and bonds can balance your portfolio and reduce overall risk.
  • All the gains and proceeds go back to the IRA without tax: When you sell your gold in your IRA, you won’t have to pay any tax as long as you follow the IRA rules.

Tips for Buying Gold in an IRA

  1. Get a self-directed IRA account: To buy physical gold in an IRA, you need a self-directed IRA account. That means you will have more control over your investments and can invest in a broader range of assets. You can open a self-directed IRA account with a custodian who specializes in such accounts.

  2. Know the rules: The IRS has set some rules for investing in precious metals in an IRA. According to Section 408m, you can only invest in certain types of precious metals, including gold, silver, platinum, and palladium, in specific forms like coins and bars. Don’t invest in collectibles or exotic coins, as they are not allowed in an IRA.

  3. Use a regulated depository for storage: After you buy physical gold for your IRA, you need to store it in a depository. The IRS requires you to store your gold in a regulated depository that adheres to strict security and reporting standards. You can’t keep the gold in your home or a safe deposit box. Choose a reputable depository in the United States and make sure it’s regulated.

  4. Beware of unregulated dealers: There are many dealers out there who claim to sell precious metals for IRAs. However, not all of them are trustworthy or legitimate. Before you buy gold for your IRA, research the dealer thoroughly. Check their reputation, ratings, reviews, and certifications. Never buy gold from the unregulated dealer.

  5. Choose a good custodian: The custodian is responsible for managing your IRA, including buying and selling assets, holding and reporting them. Therefore, you need to pick a custodian who is licensed, experienced, and professional. Ideally, choose a state-chartered trust company that specializes in self-directed IRAs and has a good reputation.

  6. Check the depository’s regulation and audit: Before you store your gold in a depository, make sure it’s regulated by a governing body such as the Department of Treasury, bank regulator, or state government. Also, make sure it’s audited annually by an independent third-party auditor. This way, you can ensure the safety and integrity of your gold.

  7. Ask for a receipt: When you buy physical gold for your IRA, always ask for a receipt that shows the gold was purchased and held in the depository. The receipt will serve as proof of ownership, and you may need it for tax and legal purposes.

  8. Don’t forget the purpose: Investing in gold in your IRA is not the same as buying gold for jewelry or speculation. The purpose of investing in gold in your IRA is to secure and diversify your retirement funds. Therefore, always keep the purpose in mind and invest wisely.


Investing in gold in your IRA can provide you security, diversification, and tax benefits. However, it’s essential to follow the IRA rules and invest in regulated, legitimate, and audited gold. By following the above tips, you can ensure the safety and success of your gold investment in your IRA.

FAQs About Buying Gold in an IRA

  1. What’s the minimum amount of gold I can invest in my IRA?
  • There’s no minimum amount of gold you can invest in your IRA. However, keep in mind that you might have to pay a storage fee for storing small amounts of gold.
  1. Can I take physical possession of my gold in my IRA?
  • No, you can’t. The IRS requires you to store your gold in a depository that meets the IRS standards.
  1. Can I sell my gold from my IRA anytime I want?
  • Yes, you can sell your gold from your IRA anytime you want. However, you need to follow the IRA rules and pay attention to taxes.
  1. Can I transfer my existing IRA to a self-directed IRA?
  • Yes, you can. You can transfer or rollover your IRA funds to a self-directed IRA without taxes or penalties.
  1. What’s the difference between a custodian and a depository?
  • A custodian is a company that manages your IRA, while a depository is a company that stores your gold. You need both a custodian and a depository to invest in gold in your IRA.