Gold IRAs are excellent instruments for long-term savings. These individual retirement accounts let people invest their money in physical gold and silver for a more diverse portfolio to hedge against inflation.
I’ve opened a precious metals IRA and gone through this process. Today, I’m going to walk you through how it works and share my experiences with various firms I met before investing.
Gold IRAs must be opened through an IRS-approved and regulated gold investment company. There are many out there to choose from, but how do you know what one to pick?
To help make things easier, I have put together this guide to finding the best gold IRA company. I have also included reviews of four of the top gold IRA companies today.
This comprehensive guide to the best places for opening gold individual retirement accounts is the perfect starting point for anyone considering this path for their savings.
How to Pick the Best Gold IRA Company
Before I talk about my top picks, let’s start by talking about what to look for when comparing gold IRA providers. There are several factors that experts assess when choosing which gold IRA companies to recommend, and they are the same things you should look out for too.
Here are the five most important considerations when choosing a gold IRA company to open an account with.
Reputation and History
The first thing I look at is the company’s reputation and history. This includes how long they have been in business, how highly they are regarded in the industry, and what reputable trust review sites say about them.
Most of the best gold IRA companies have been around for at least 10 years. Remember, just because a company is new doesn’t mean it isn’t good- you just have less evidence to go off of when deciding whether or not it is reliable.
At the same time, a company that has been in business for decades may not have the best reputation, so you need to look beyond the age.
One of the best ways to establish whether or not it is a reputable gold IRA company is to look at its rating with the Better Business Bureau.
The BBB is a private, non-profit agency that works to protect consumers by independently rating businesses based on reliability and responses. It is one of the most trustworthy ratings of all. It is best to look for a gold IRA company with an A+ rating.
You can also check the Business Consumer Alliance, which offers a more in-depth view of how well a company performs in terms of complaints, reviews, and several other factors. An AAA rating is the best there is.
Another way to rest reputation is to look at customer reviews and ask for recommendations from trusted sources.
Customer Satisfaction Ratings
As well as looking into the company’s reputation, you should also look into what customers have to say about it. Reviews can tell you a lot, although you need to take some with a pinch of salt, as they are not always entirely accurate.
That said, the overall customer satisfaction rating on well-known review sites can give you a good idea of how happy current clients are and why they feel the way they do.
It is a good idea to look not only at the five-star and one-star reviews, as these are not always the most informative. Reviews in the middle usually offer a more rounded picture of the experience you are likely to have as a customer.
Next, you should look into the options you have. Some companies only work with gold, while others offer various types of precious metals for investments.
There are also a few variations of gold IRAs, but not every company works with them all. Furthermore, the options for contributions vary- from the minimum investment requirements to how often you can contribute during the year.
Costs and Fees
Cost is always a factor, no matter what service you are looking for. It is quite surprising to see how much the charges and fees differ from one gold IRA company to the next, so it is important to look into what costs you will bear.
I do not recommend picking a gold investments provider based on cost alone- the cheapest doesn’t always mean the best. However, you should compare prices between a few different top gold IRA companies and look at what you get for your money from each one.
Most companies charge an admin fee and may have a one-off charge for setting up the account. Other charges may include custodian fees, storage fees, and a cost for transferring funds.
It is not just the amount of fees you should look at when determining whether or not you want to open an account with a particular company. The best gold IRA companies are upfront and transparent about their fees, but some are less forthcoming with honest information about charges.
Last but not least, look into everything you get when you open an account with a gold IRA company. Some offer more services than others, and it is important to choose one that covers all your needs.
As well as managing accounts for precious metals investments, some companies provide storage, custodian services, gold brokerage, buyback programs, and more.
You should also look into where the company stores gold, the variety of products sold, and how easy it is to get in touch with a company representative to get the support you need.
The Four Best Gold IRA Companies and Why to Choose Them
Now, let’s look at four of the best gold IRA companies of 2023. I compared many leading names on features, benefits, costs, and services to come up with our top recommendations for where to open a gold IRA account.
Each is a highly-rated, reputable gold IRA provider that helps people invest in physical precious metals as part of their retirement portfolio diversification strategy.
Let’s get started.
My top pick overall from all the gold IRA companies available is Goldco. It is not just us that say so- Goldco is widely considered one of the leaders in this industry and is tough to beat on reputation and customer satisfaction.
It’s the company I personally used to set up my self directed IRA so I can buy gold and silver. I spent dozens of hours comparing them to other firms and felt most comfortable with them, so let’s break down why I chose them.
- Fast and easy account setup
- Exceptional customer service
- Long-standing reputation for excellence
- Reasonable fees
- First-year free
- Huge variety of gold and silver products
- Trustworthy gold IRA company
- Free silver and gold coins given as a bonus
- The best educational resources of the gold IRA companies listed in this review
- No option for platinum and palladium coins and bars
- Fairly high minimum investment requirement
- Only third-party storage and custodian options (although they are very good ones!)
The company was founded in 2006 under the name Goldco Direct but nowadays goes by Goldco.
As well as being a well-rounded award-winning gold IRA provider, the company is also known for its excellent educational resources that teach people about the ins and outs of gold IRA investment so they can have more confidence and control going forward.
Across the board, Goldco gets top marks. It has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau- plus a 4.97 out of 5-star score based on hundreds of reviews. The Business Consumer Alliance also awards its top rating of Triple-A.
Many things make Goldco a clear leader in gold IRA investing. If exceptional service, competitive pricing, and educational support are things you want, then this could be the best gold IRA company for you.
Of all the reasons to love Goldco, these are the ones that stand out the most.
- White Glove Service
Every Goldco client receives white glove service throughout their experience. The customer support team at Goldco is exceptional- offering guidance throughout the account opening process, rollovers, transferring funds, and purchasing precious metals.
- Educational Resources and Support
Rather than simply selling gold and setting up precious metals IRAs for people, Goldco encourages and helps investors learn more about gold and silver investments and how to use them effectively to enhance their retirement portfolios.
From the first call, specialists are happy to spend time talking with new investors about the differences between investing in coins and bars or bullion- and can share helpful advice regarding a new gold individual retirement account and how to make the most of it.
There are also resources available for those who want to study the industry for themselves.
- Buybacks and Bonuses
GoldCo’s buyback program is arguably the best of any gold IRA company right now. The company will buy gold and silver products back from investors whenever they want to sell them, or they can trade them in for something else.
On top of that, GoldCo customers often receive bonus coins and free silver with purchases.
- High-Quality Custodian and Storage Options
Gold IRA custodian services at Goldco are provided through Equity Trust Company, which is one of the top companies in this field. It works in line with IRS requirements and guidelines for an efficient, reliable, and compliant service Goldco clients can rely on.
There are three IRS-approved storage facility options- the Delaware Depository, the Brinks Depository, and IDS Texas. All three are excellent options, but I recommend the Delaware Depository (most people choose this one anyway).
All precious metals are fully insured throughout the transportation process and once they are safely stored.
Investment Options and Requirements
There is very little I don’t like about Goldco, but I have to mention the lack of variety in the precious metals offered. Many gold IRA companies work with gold, silver, platinum, and palladium- but GoldCo only offers a gold or silver IRA.
That aside, the range of silver and gold bullion, bars, and coins available is excellent. All physical gold and silver sold by Goldco meet IRS regulations for purity, and the variety is very good.
Goldco sells a variety of gold bars and all the most desirable and popular gold coins. You can also choose from almost two dozen silver coins and bars.
As for the requirements, the minimum investment amount needed to open a gold IRA with Goldco is $25,000. This is one of the higher requirements, but it is certainly not the highest.
Why Choose Goldco?
In short, I recommend choosing Goldco because you get an unmatched level of customer service from beginning to end. The investment options for silver and gold are varied, and it is easy to liquidate when the time comes through the exceptional buyback program.
Goldco is the best gold IRA company overall for service, reliability, versatility, and support. The annual fees are also below the average for the services offered. I urge you to read my full Goldco review for a more extensive breakdown.
2: American Hartford Gold Group
Taking my second spot on this list of the best gold IRA companies is the American Hartford Gold Group. It is the largest precious metals provider in the USA and is well known for its excellent prices and comprehensive services.
There are a lot of things to like about American Hartford Gold, which have helped keep it at the top of the industry for almost a decade.
- You can buy and sell gold and silver
- Shipping your precious metals to an IRS-approved depository is free of charge
- Free storage, insurance, and account maintenance for up to three years for new clients
- Price match guarantee on all precious metals purchases
- Buyback program
- Relatively low minimum investment requirement
- Some of the lowest fees overall in the industry
- Highly rated by all leading trust websites and review organizations
- Great customer service
- Honest and upfront pricing
- Deliveries can sometimes take a little longer than average
- Platinum and palladium products are not sold on the website
- Limited educational tools
Since 2015, American Hartford Gold has been one of the biggest and most respected precious metals companies in the gold IRA world. What really sets it apart from the competition are the low fees, multiple bonuses for new clients, and price match promises.
It is not just a great choice because it is kind to budgets- the company also performs exceptionally well in customer service and beneficial features for clients. There are plenty of products available, and the process of getting started couldn’t be any easier.
As expected, it ranks highly with organizations such as the Better Business Bureau and Business Consumer Alliance, earning a top score from BBB and an AA (second-highest rating) from BCA.
There are also countless verified five-star reviews scattered across well-known trusted review websites online. The overall score on TrustPilot and TrustLink are both five stars.
American Hartford Gold is one of the best gold IRA companies of 2023 for many reasons, not least of all its firmly established reputation as a high-quality, reliable, and robust investment company.
Of all the things people like the most about American Hartford Gold, these are the three that I think qualify the group as my second-top pick for gold IRA investing.
- Price Matching
One of American Hartford Gold’s main selling points is its low fees, but it goes one step further to secure its reputation as the most affordable gold IRA company. Throughout the year, the company offers price match guarantees, which allow you to get the best deal from them if you find a lower price for any service elsewhere.
If you do happen to find a lower quote for silver and gold products or other services, all you need to do is check if the price match is live, call them up, and get your discount. There are no loopholes or barriers- it does what it says it does.
- Varied Storage Options
When you open a gold IRA with American Hartford Gold, you have access to many IRS-approved storage facilities located across the US. They are all high-quality secure facilities covered by insurance, so it comes down to the one that you think suits your needs best.
The company works with Brink’s Global Services, the Delaware Depository, and the International Depository Service- which is a segregated storage provider with facilities in two states.
- No-Fee Buybacks
American Hartford Gold offers not only a buyback guarantee (you can always sell back your gold, no matter what)- but does so with no additional fees.
Buyback prices are always a little lower, but some companies charge a percentage on top. This company does not, again in keeping with its modus operandum of focusing on low-cost, high-service gold IRAs.
Investment Options and Requirements
Only gold and silver coins, bars, and bullion are available to buy through American Hartford Gold’s website- but there are some limited options for platinum and palladium coins if you contact the broker directly.
Another reason I rate this as one of the best gold IRA companies today is the lower minimum investment requirement. At $10,000, it still sounds like a lot- but compared to amounts of up to $50,000 at some other leading companies, it is reasonable.
By offering this lower minimum, it opens the doors to more investors who perhaps want to start with a smaller investment in physical gold or other precious metals.
Why Choose American Hartford Gold?
Above all else, American Hartford Gold stands out for its excellent value for money. If you want to take advantage of low fees, great deals, and a more palatable investment minimum, then this is a good place to start.
As well as being the most budget-friendly of the big-name gold IRA companies, it is also one of the easiest to work with. Customer service is readily available, and support is provided at every stage.
And if you want further information, please read my full review of American Hartford Gold.
3: Augusta Precious Metals
Another well-known leader in the gold investments world is Augusta Precious Metals. It is one of the first names that come up for anyone researching gold IRAs, and for good reason.
Few other companies look after clients as well as this one does, and the various other perks of opening a retirement account through Augusta Precious Metals earn it one of the top spots on everyone’s lists.
- Personalized customer service
- Webinars available for insight into gold IRA investments
- Fantastic reputation
- Highly rated by all leading industry trust websites and organizations
- No shipping, setup, or insurance fees for new users
- Free portfolio reviews
- Simple setup process
- No option for platinum and palladium IRAs
- High minimum investment requirement
- Some fee information is difficult to find on the Augusta Precious Metals website
Augusta Precious Metals officially launched in 2012, but the family behind the company already had several decades of experience working in precious metals investing.
Alongside Goldco, it is considered nationwide as one of the most trusted gold IRA companies in America, with customer service and educational resources to rival anyone.
It is also right up there with GoldCo in the eyes of all the go-to trust sites. The company is rated A+ by the BBB, has five stars on TrustLink, and has a BCA rating of AAA.
The fact that it provides excellent customer care, support, and guidance throughout the gold investment process is not the only reason I (and many others) rate Augusta Precious Metals so highly.
This company also offers a range of free services and money-saving bonuses to help people get more from their gold IRAs.
Here are a few more details regarding the best bits of Augusta Precious Metals that make it a strong contender for the crown of best gold IRA company of 2023.
- Free Webinars and Other Educational Materials
Those who want to dive deeper into the world of precious metals investing can do so with the support of Augusta Precious Metals. The company hosts free webinars with industry experts to explain how investments work, how to optimize them in a retirement portfolio, and other useful tips for new gold IRA holders.
Customers can also access materials and resources to learn more on their own or with the help of one-on-one support agents who offer guidance.
- Lifetime Service
Once an Augusta Precious Metals client, always an Augusta Precious Metals client. Even if you liquidate your holdings, you still have access to the excellent support team that works around the clock to answer questions and provide advice.
- Waived Fees for the First Year
There are no account fees or shipping fees for the first year, and the shipping and transit insurance is provided free of charge!
On top of that, every client gets free account setup for up to 10 years, no matter how many accounts they open with Augusta Precious Metals.
Investment Options and Requirements
Contrary to what the name suggests, this company doesn’t actually offer very many precious metals. It only works with silver and gold investments, not platinum and palladium. There is a selection of common gold and silver bullion and some premium coins in both metals.
If there is one thing that marks Augusta Precious Metals down, it is the $50,000 minimum investment requirement- something that prices out quite a lot of investors.
Why Choose Augusta Precious Metals?
To summarize, Augusta Precious Metals offers high-quality service and account handling for gold IRA investors with $50,000 or more to put into their portfolio. The company is competitively priced, especially for brand-new clients, and is especially appealing to those who want personal, one-to-one guidance and support.
If you want to learn more about how to maximize the benefits of your gold IRA with webinars, educational materials, and dedicated service agents, Augusta Precious Metals is worth consideration.
You can read more information about this company in my full review.
4: Noble Gold Investments
My fourth and final pick on my list of the best gold IRA companies of 2023 is Noble Gold Investments. It may not have quite the same star power as the previous three entries, but it more than holds its own as a reputable gold IRA company with a lot to offer.
With some of the lowest investment requirements in the industry, Noble Gold makes opening and investing in a precious metals IRA more accessible, and it does so with the backing of a dedicated customer support team and a well-rounded set of services.
- Upfront pricing information available online
- Personalized support and service
- Easy buyback program
- Unique storage facility in Texas
- Fast and simple account setup
- Low minimum investment requirement
- Great range of precious metals for sale
- Varied purchase options
- Educational materials
- Fewer than average online reviews (less accurate ratings)
- Must speak to an IRA specialist before opening an account
- Some annual fees are comparatively for lower investments
Noble Gold Investments was founded in 2016 by two experts in precious metals IRAs. The company follows the idea of fuss-free, straightforward, and reliable investment support for those interested in diversifying their retirement funds.
It is best known for being more accessible than a lot of other gold IRA companies, thanks to its low investment requirements and competitive fees. Noble Gold also stands out for its unique storage options and personalized service for every client.
There is plenty of information available for free through the Noble Gold website, and prospective clients can learn a lot about their potential future investments and what they mean for their retirement savings by contacting the excellent customer support team.
Transparency is a big selling point at Noble Gold, which helps it keep up with some of the more established gold IRA companies I have mentioned above.
Unfortunately, there are significantly fewer online reviews for Noble Gold than its main competitors, but I am here to share the best features offered that make this company worth considering.
- Options for IRA and Non-IRA Gold Purchases
I know this guide is all about gold IRAs, but it is good to know about the other services a company offers. The IRS rules state that you cannot legally store gold purchases for an IRA account at home, but you can make other purchases if you want to use home storage.
Noble Gold runs a program called Noble Express, which provides Royal Survival Packs. Packs range from $10,000 to $500,000 in gold coins, which are discreetly and securely delivered to your home address.
If you want fast access to easy-sale emergency gold funds, this is something Noble Gold can help with out with your gold IRA account activities.
- Extensive Educational Resources
Even before you become a Noble Gold client, you can access an impressive range of educational materials regarding precious metals, gold IRAs, investment practices, and more. These include downloadable guides and interesting articles on important topics.
More resources are available for Noble Gold account holders to help them understand the industry and what they can get from it.
- Personal Advisor Service
Customer service is a priority at Noble Gold, so much so that every client is appointed a dedicated advisor to help them with any questions or requests throughout their gold investment journey.
Potential investors all have a one-to-one consultation with a gold IRA expert before setting up an account to figure out the best way to proceed. At first, I was a little put off by this idea- assuming it was just a sales tactic, but that is not the case.
This is not a high-pressure conversation. Instead, it focuses on the client’s goals, preferences, and understanding of the industry.
That same idea continues after setting up an account. Your personal Noble Gold advisor is your trusted guide to turn to for advice regarding your retirement accounts. They also offer educational support- it really is an impressive service.
Investment Options and Requirements
Noble Gold is the only entry on my list that fully supports investments in gold, silver, platinum, and palladium. The range of products on offer includes bullion, coins, and bars.
Depending on the type of precious metal you are interested in, you can buy limited mintage coins, physical gold bullion, specialty bars, and more.
To help more people have the opportunity to diversify their retirement assets by investing in precious metals, Noble Gold offers low investment minimums. The requirements vary depending on the type of account and transaction.
Gold IRA transactions start at just $2000- one of the lowest requirements in the industry. The minimum on non-IRA transfers and transactions is a little higher but still manageable at $5000.
Why Choose Noble Gold?
My reasons for rating Noble Gold amongst the best gold IRA providers are numerous, but two stand out above the rest. Noble Gold is an excellent choice for first-time precious metals investors who don’t want to put large sums of retirement savings into this type of savings account (not right away, at least).
At just $2000, the minimum investment does not alienate many retirement investors, and the dedicated customer service and learning support further provide the incentive to pick this company if you are completely new to the game.
For even more information, read the NobleGold Investments summary.
Investing in precious metals is a great way to diversify your portfolio and create more balance in your existing retirement accounts- especially with gold IRAs.
The company you decide to open a gold IRA with will certainly make a difference to your overall experience, and there can be significant financial differences as well.
All four of the options on my list provide high-quality services, IRS-approved precious metals, custodians, and storage facilities, and reputations for being reliable, trustworthy, and efficient.
Let me sum up each option and who I think it is best for.
- Goldco is the best precious metals IRA company overall. From competitive fees to exceptional service, it ticks every box for someone who wants to make gold and silver an important part of their retirement savings.
- American Hartford Gold is the best budget gold IRA company. Its fees are the lowest of any top-rated precious metals retirement account providers, but it delivers the same excellent services as everyone else.
- Augusta Precious Metals offers unbeatable gold IRA services for those who have $50,000 or more it invest in gold and silver precious metals. It is a big number, but the company backs up its request with exceptional features and services across the board.
- Noble Gold is the best choice if you only want to make a small investment in precious metals and want to have options in gold, silver, platinum, and palladium. It also has one of the best education programs, making it a top choice for first-time precious metals IRA investors.
No matter which one you choose, remember to always speak with a financial advisor before opening a gold IRA or transferring funds from an existing IRA or other savings account. There are lots of reasons to invest in precious metals, but there are also risks and things to consider.
Like any investment, opening a gold IRA should be done with prior thought and planning, and you should compare companies beforehand to find the best fit.
My top recommendation is Goldco, but all four of these options merit a place at the top of the industry.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do gold IRA companies charge different fees?
If gold IRAs are the same across the board due to IRS rules and regulations, how can the fees be so different from one company to the next?
Although the IRS regulations control what kinds of precious metals you can put into a gold-backed IRA and how much money you can invest annually, it doesn’t have anything to do with how much companies can charge for their services.
How much the precious metals IRA companies charge for setup, admin, account maintenance, and general services is entirely up to them.
Some charge more but include insurance and storage fees. Others have a lower annual cost for the account but have more additional fees.
The custodian services and storage facilities they use can also impact the costs since different facilities and companies charge the gold IRA companies varying fees.
At the end of the day, the general offerings are pretty similar across the board, so you shouldn’t be paying drastically more for one than another. The costs overall are not too dissimilar between the four on our list, but the small differences often matter.
What is a Gold IRA Rollover?
A gold IRA rollover is the process of moving money from an existing IRA or 401(k) retirement savings account into a gold IRA.
Many investors planning to invest in gold want to use funds they already have in their retirement portfolio- not new income. To do this, they need to withdraw it from a traditional IRA or their 401(k), depending on where they have it stored.
However, withdrawing funds before a certain age incurs penalties and high taxes. The way around this is to arrange a rollover.
There are two types of gold IRA rollover: direct and indirect.
A direct rollover is preferable, as it reduces the space for error or delays. It is arranged between the custodian of your gold IRA and your current retirement account’s administrator. Once you direct the custodian on how much to move, they send the request to the administrator, who then sends it directly into the gold IRA.
An indirect rollover involves your personal account. You arrange the withdrawal of funds from your retirement account into your personal account. From the date it arrives, you have 60 days to send it (in full) to your gold IRA custodian. Failure to do this within the timeframe will lead to you being charged the entire tax penalty that you would be if you simply made an early withdrawal.
What are some other top gold IRA companies to consider?
Many more companies working with precious metals IRAs are worth a mention.
Here are a few other names I consider high-quality gold investing companies that might be the right choice for your financial future.
- Birch Gold Group
- Oxford Gold Group
- Orion Metal Exchange
- Advantage Gold
- Patriot Gold Group
Before picking a provider for your precious metals IRA account, compare a few names to get a better idea of what you need. It helps to know your priorities before you start the search!