With the current economic uncertainty, many people are diversifying their investment portfolios by investing in gold. Purchasing gold is a great way to hedge against rising inflation and secure one’s retirement. That’s why there is high demand for precious metals IRAs. 

Precious metals IRAs are individual retirement accounts similar to traditional IRAs but with the added benefit of investing in non-traditional assets such as gold, silver, and other precious metals.

If you’re considering setting up a gold IRA to secure your retirement but don’t have the cash to fund it, don’t worry. In this guide, we will go over how to open a gold IRA using the money from your existing retirement accounts, such as 401ks and Roth IRAs.

If you are ready to see how this process works, get a free guide from the #1 gold IRA firm.  Or, read on and I’ll explain exactly how this process works.  

What Is a Gold IRA Transfer?

Gold IRA Transfer

A gold IRA transfer is the process of transferring funds from an existing retirement account to a new gold IRA account. There are two ways you can move money from your current IRA, which include the following:

  1. Rollover

  2. Transfer

A rollover involves the existing retirement account custodian giving you the funds you wish to withdraw. When that transaction takes place, you will have 60 days to move the money into your new gold IRA account. If you’re under the age of 59.5, you may face a 10% penalty for failing to meet the deadline.

On the other hand, in a transfer, the existing IRA custodian takes care of the paperwork and moves the funds directly from your current retirement account to the new gold IRA. It’s the easiest way of setting up your gold IRA without the hassle of handling cash.

What Is a Gold IRA Rollover?

A “gold IRA rollover” is the process of moving funds from existing retirement accounts to physical gold bullion or coins in a gold IRA. This process is becoming increasingly popular among investors in the United States who are looking to diversify their portfolios and safeguard their assets.

Is There a Difference Between Gold IRA Transfer and a Gold IRA Rollover?

A gold IRA rollover is when you move funds from one gold individual retirement account to another. The process starts with requesting your existing custodian to wire the funds to the new company.

On the other hand, a gold IRA transfer involves withdrawing money from one gold individual retirement account and depositing it into the other. The main distinction between the two is that in a gold IRA rollover, the disbursed funds never come into contact with the account holder.

How to Open a Gold IRA?

Open Gold IRA

Although it may seem like opening a gold IRA can be a daunting task, the process is pretty simple and straightforward.

Find the Right Gold IRA Company

An IRA invests money in stocks, bonds, and other traditional assets, while a precious metals IRA involves the purchase of precious metals, such as gold, silver, platinum, and others. These are often in the form of bullion, bars, and coins.

You need to start by doing your research into the gold IRA rollover companies operating in the United States. With so many options, choosing one that fits your needs best can be challenging. 

It is important to note that opening up a gold IRA is a big decision, and you need to take the time to choose a company that is best for you. The best gold IRA company will focus on educating their client, guiding them through the process, and providing excellent customer service.

Remember, not all gold IRA companies are the same. Some may excel at providing exceptional customer service, while others may have a lower fee. 

Once you’ve finalized a company, reach out to one of their representatives to start the paperwork on setting up the gold IRA.

Contact the Gold IRA Company to Open an Account

The next stage of the 401k to gold IRA rollover process involves contacting the company you’ve shortlisted during your research. There are many ways you can reach out to the gold IRA custodian, but the best is to give them a quick call. 

Talking over the phone about setting up an account is a great way to learn more about the company, how they can help with the process, and what they can offer you. It also gives you an opportunity to discuss your concerns and get answers to your queries.

The representative will guide you on the paperwork you must complete and submit to set up the account. Most gold IRA companies offer a hassle-free transfer process, and they will handle the communications with your existing retirement account custodian to ensure a smooth setup.

However, you would need to let your current IRA manager know about transferring the funds, which we will discuss in the next section.

Fund Your Gold IRA

After you’ve funded the new gold IRA, you can either purchase precious metals yourself or direct the custodian to do it for you. 

Most gold IRA companies work with secure storage facilities in the United States, where they deliver the client’s precious metals for safekeeping, while some also offer to post them to your home address. 

Delivering physical gold or other precious metals to your home address can get you in trouble. We’ll discuss that in detail in the later sections of this article. 

Convert IRA to Gold: Transferring Funds from an Existing Retirement Account to Your New Gold IRA

Whether you have a 401k or a Roth IRA, here’s the process you should follow to transfer funds from an existing retirement account to your new gold IRA:

Contact the Administrator

The first step to transferring funds to your new gold IRA is to contact your existing retirement account administrator. Let them know that you wish to initiate this process, and they will guide you on the options available and the next step.

Fill Out the Paperwork

Once you’ve spoken to the administrator, they will provide you with a form that you need to fill out. It requires basic information and details about the account to which you wish to transfer funds and how much you want to move to the new gold IRA.

Transfer the Funds

After you’ve submitted the form, you need to wait for the existing retirement account custodian to wire the funds. However, if you’ve chosen to withdraw the money and take care of the process yourself, you must make the transfer within 60 days.

Select the Gold You Want to Buy

Previously, IRAs were only limited to holding American Eagle gold and silver coins. However, as of today, account holders can purchase IRS-permitted gold, silver, palladium, and platinum bullion and coins. 

If you’re unsure whether or not the gold you wish to purchase is IRS-eligible, your new gold IRA custodian can provide guidance.

Request the Custodian to Make the Purchase

Once you’ve decided what you would like to purchase, contact one of the representatives of the new gold IRA company to buy the precious metal on your behalf. 

The custodian will use the funds transferred into your account to carry out the transaction.

Get the Gold Delivered

After the custodian purchases the gold on your behalf, they will have it delivered to a secure depository for safekeeping. Although we mentioned earlier that you might have the option for home delivery, it’s not always a great idea as you may get into trouble with the IRS.

What Is the Role of a Gold IRA Custodian?

A gold IRA custodian is responsible for handling the paperwork, managing your account, and providing the necessary documentation to the IRS. They must also carry out transactions that involve buying and selling precious metals according to their client’s needs.

While conducting transactions, the custodian must ensure that they comply with all of the IRS regulations when handling gold IRA rollovers to avoid trouble with the tax authority.

A gold IRA custodian must also help investors store their physical gold by working with secure depositories or storage facilities across the United States.

After helping purchase precious metals for the investor, they must also provide reports on their account’s value and details of any transactions that take place.

What Should You Look for When Choosing a Gold IRA Custodian?

There are several things you should look for when choosing a gold IRA custodian, and these include the following:


It’s crucial that you check the reviews of the gold IRA company online on Google, Facebook, and other authoritative platforms, such as Better Business Bureau. 

Checking out what customers have left about the business is a great way to know whether the custodian is a reputable gold IRA company.


You must open a gold IRA account with a custodian with substantial experience in the precious metals industry. It’s an excellent way to ensure that you won’t face any stress or hassle during the account opening process or when conducting transactions.


There are many different types of fees that a custodian may charge for their services, including setup, annual, and transaction fees. 

Make sure you do your research, talk to the representatives of the companies you’ve shortlisted, and find out if there are any hidden costs. You should always choose a custodian with a transparent pricing policy.

Customer Service

If it’s your first time opening a gold IRA, you need a custodian who is there to provide you with relevant information, address your concerns, and answer any queries you may have. 

A good gold IRA custodian is one that provides regular updates to their clients about their accounts.


A gold IRA company that has accreditations from reputable industry organizations is also a key factor to consider before setting up an account. 

It shows that the business is legit and meets the necessary requirements for accreditation after going through a rigorous process to achieve them.

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Are There Any Gold IRA Transfer Fees?

Currently, there are no IRS or government fees for transferring funds from one IRA to another. However, your existing retirement account custodian might charge a fee, which will depend on the company and its policies.

If you’re looking to fund your gold IRA with the money in your existing retirement account, it’s best to speak to the administrator about any charges you might incur when transferring the funds.

Gold IRA Transfer Fees

Do You Have to Pay Taxes on the Transfer of Gold IRA?

If you choose the transfer option, you’re simply requesting the existing IRA company to transfer the funds to the new IRA. Since you’re not withdrawing the money, you don’t have to pay any taxes fees or early withdrawal penalties.

However, if you’re taking out the money by opting for the transfer option, you have 60 days to deposit the funds into the new gold IRA. If you’re not of retirement age and fail to adhere to the deadline, you must pay a 10% penalty. It’s also important to note that individuals can opt for gold IRA rollovers only once a year.

Benefits of Converting IRA to Gold: Why Should You Convert IRA to a Gold Individual Retirement Account?

There are several benefits of converting an IRA to a gold individual retirement account, some of which include the following:

It Can Help Diversify Your Portfolio

You may have heard the age-old saying, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket,” and there is a good reason for that. If you’ve invested all your life savings into one asset and the value of it goes down, you risk losing a considerable amount of money.

However, if you were to diversify your investments into many different assets, you’re spreading the risk. In case the value of one asset goes down, your portfolio doesn’t take a big hit, and if the value of the other investments increases, it cancels out the negative impact.

Investing in precious metals like gold and silver can help diversify your investment portfolio. Gold is often considered a safe haven and does not fluctuate as much as other assets, such as stock, real estate, bonds, and foreign currencies.

It Protects You from Inflation

The value of gold does not depend on the performance of the stock market or other traditional assets. In times of inflation, the value of the US dollar falls, and when that happens, it can affect people’s buying power. Any money in your savings account is now worth less than what it was before.

However, if you have your money invested in gold, you don’t have to worry about that, as gold remains stable. It may even increase as during inflationary periods, people lose confidence in the US dollar and move towards buying precious metals, increasing their demand and price.

It Provides Economic Security

When there is economic uncertainty, many traditional assets lose their value. If you have most of your money invested in them, your investment portfolio will take a major hit. 

Investing in gold can compensate for the losses incurred as they are relatively stable.

It Can Help Grow Your Retirement Savings

Although gold does not provide returns as high as the stock market, it does provide consistent growth, allowing investors to increase the value of their portfolio in the long run. It is the perfect investment if you’re looking to grow your retirement savings.

Understanding Gold IRA Rules and Regulations: What You Need to Know

Investing in a gold IRA is a great way to diversify your retirement portfolio and secure your savings from economic uncertainty. However, it is crucial to ensure that you follow the IRS rules and regulations governing gold IRAs before making an investment decision.

A gold IRA is not much different from a traditional individual retirement account. The key difference between the two is the type of asset you can invest in. 

Instead of buying stocks, bonds, or other traditional assets, a gold IRA allows individuals to purchase physical gold and other precious metals, such as silver, platinum, and palladium.

The IRS has strict guidelines regarding the type of gold and other precious metals you can purchase using your gold IRA account. They must meet certain criteria to be eligible for purchase and storage at a secure storage facility.

The following are the minimum requirements that precious metals must meet before you can purchase them:

  • Gold, platinum, and palladium must be 99.5% pure.

  • Silver must be 99.9% pure.

  • The bars, rounds, or coins you wish to purchase must be produced by a refiner, producer, or manufacturer accredited by NYMEX, COMEX, ISO 9000, or the national government mint, among other organizations.

  • Proof coins must be in original condition with their certificate of authenticity.

Below are some examples of IRS-eligible gold products:

  • American Eagle

  • American Kangaroo

  • British Britannia

  • Canadian Gold Maple

  • US Buffalo

  • Any other product that meets the fineness requirement

The following are some examples of IRS-eligible silver products:

  • American Eagle

  • America the Beautiful

  • Australia Kookaburra

  • Canadian Maple Leafs

  • Chinese Panda

  • Any other product that meets the fineness requirement

Below are some examples of IRS-eligible platinum products:

  • American Eagle

  • Australian Koala

  • Isle of Man Noble

  • Canadian Maple Leafs

  • Chinese Panda

  • Any other product that meets the fineness requirement

The following are some examples of IRS-eligible palladium products:

  • Canadian Maple Leafs

  • Any other product that meets the fineness requirement

There are certain bullion and coins that you cannot purchase for your gold IRA as they do not meet the IRS-eligible requirements. Some examples include rare or collectible coins, Belgian Franc, Colombian Peso, Italian Lira, Swiss Franc, and German Mark.

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Many people invest in a gold IRA to enjoy the tax advantages it offers, which is similar to a traditional individual retirement account. However, just like any other IRA, distributions and withdrawals are taxable. It’s best to talk to a financial consultant or advisor to learn more about the tax implications before setting up the account.

Another key thing to remember is the contribution limits on a gold IRA. The following are the contribution limits for the tax year 2023:

  • Traditional gold IRA: $6,500 (or $7,500 if you’re 50 or older)

  • Roth gold IRA: $6,500 (or $7,500 if you’re 50 or older)

What Types of Retirement Accounts Can You Transfer to a Gold IRA?

There are many different retirement accounts that are eligible for a transfer to a gold IRA, including the following:

  • Traditional IRAs

  • Roth IRA

  • 401(k) or 403(b): A 401(k) or 403(b)

  • Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) IRA

  • Simple IRA

How to Choose the Best Gold IRA Investment: Coins, Bars, or Bullion?

Whether you’re looking to open up an account with American Hartford Gold or any other IRA company, there are many different types of gold and precious metals you can purchase through a gold IRA. 

With so many options available, it can be challenging to decide which one you should request your custodian to buy on your behalf. Don’t worry, as we’re here to help.

There are certain factors you should consider which can help you decide on the best gold IRA investment for you, and these include the following:


Gold and other precious metals come in different purity levels. It’s essential to do your research before purchasing any, as whatever you decide to buy should meet the IRS requirements.


Although gold bullion, coins, or bars may seem like similar investments, they have different levels of liquidity. It’s much easier to sell gold coins than bullion later on down the road. 

Another thing to remember is that coins are more flexible than bullion. If you have an entire gold bar and want to release part of the investment, you cannot do that, as you would need to sell the entire bar. 

However, if you were to have a similar investment in gold coins, you could easily sell a couple of gold coins to get the money you require.


Gold coins and bars have higher premiums than bullion, meaning you will be paying more than the actual value of what you receive. It’s best to look around and ensure you’re getting a fair price before making the purchase.


Coins are much easier to move than bullion. You can keep them in safe deposit boxes or spread them across different locations to ensure the maximum security of your investment. 

On the other hand, bullion may require more space and special storage considerations. 

It’s also important to note that although some gold IRA companies, such as Augusta Precious Metals, promise you can get the physical gold at home, we don’t recommend doing so for several reasons, including penalties and audits. 

What Happens to Your Gold IRA in the Event of a Market Crash?

As we discussed earlier, gold IRAs are safe havens as market volatility does not determine the value of the portfolio. When the stock market or other financial instruments perform poorly, the value of gold remains stable or may even increase. In the event of a market crash, a gold IRA can help you hedge against the losses incurred with your other investments.

Although gold’s value is relatively stable, it’s important to note that it can still fluctuate over time depending on various factors. It’s best to create a retirement portfolio with a mix of different assets to help you diversify your portfolio, achieve long-term growth, and ensure stability during economic uncertainty.

If you’re worried about market instability and rising inflation in the country, following the steps below can help protect your gold IRA:

Work with a Reputable Gold IRA Company

There are many gold IRA companies in the country. Take your time and do some research on what they offer and which one caters to your needs the best. 

A good gold IRA custodian will help you understand market fluctuations, provide you with guidance, focus on education, and ensure they’re there when you need their help.

Have a Long-term Perspective

Historically, gold has held up its value pretty well. The price of the precious metal increased by 360% from 1990 to 2020, helping Americans beat inflation and protect their money in times of poor market performance. It’s best to have a long-term perspective when setting up a gold IRA and let the precious metal do its magic.

Ensure Diversification

Don’t keep all your eggs in one basket. It’s essential to diversify and invest in different assets, not just gold IRA investments, to protect your investment strategy.

Reach Out to a Financial Advisor

Working out a portfolio catered to your financial situation and retirement goals is the best way to go about setting up a gold IRA. 

An experienced financial advisor can guide you on the available financial instruments and how much you should invest in each of them to achieve your investment goals.

What Are the Alternatives to Gold IRA Transfer?

Although a gold IRA transfer is an excellent option for people looking to move away from traditional IRAs, there are many other alternative investments you may consider. Some of these include the following:

Real Estate

Real estate can be a great investment opportunity if you’re looking for a tangible asset with the potential for value appreciation. 

You can buy properties and rent them out for a steady stream of income to secure your retirement or invest in real estate investment trusts (REITs) and earn profit without the hassle of owning and managing a property.

REITs are a better option for individuals who do not have enough cash to buy a property but are looking to diversify their investments by getting a slice of the real estate market.

Precious Metals

Besides investing in gold, there are other precious metals that one can invest in, such as silver, platinum, and palladium. You can buy these through a gold IRA company without worrying about the transfer or rollover process.


Although they are more volatile than gold, stocks can be an excellent alternative investment if you’re looking for long-term growth potential. 

It is important to note that stocks are subject to market volatility, and you should consider speaking to a financial advisor before investing in them.


A bond is a type of security under which the issuer owes the holder a debt. There are many different types of bonds, including corporate and municipal bonds. 

Although bonds are a much safer form of investment as they are less volatile compared to stocks, there is still a certain level of risk affecting these financial instruments, including credit risks, interest rates, and inflation rates.


These are insurance contracts that offer a guaranteed income stream, making them an excellent alternative investment for those willing to trade long-term growth for stability.

A gold IRA is not the only option available to individuals looking to diversify their retirement portfolios. Real estate, stocks, bonds, other precious metals, and annuities are also fantastic alternative investments.

However, it is important to note that all of these have their advantages and drawbacks. It’s best to consult with a financial advisor to learn more about the investment options that best fit your retirement goals.

Can You Transfer Gold IRA to Your Home for Safekeeping?

The advertisements of opening up a gold IRA and storing the precious metals at home started surfacing in 2016, prompting the IRS to issue warnings to investors against making such moves. 

One of these advertisements was from Hartford Gold Group, showing a couple near a safe with gold in it, suggesting that you can have the precious metal delivered to your home.

However, under the IRS IRA guidelines, you can only store physical gold in IRS-compliant depositories, meaning keeping the precious metal in a bank safety deposit or at your home is not allowed. Section 408(m) of the IRS code deals with this and states that the precious metals must be kept “in the physical possession of a trustee.”

There are penalties for transferring gold IRA to your home. When you move the gold from the depository to your home, you face a withdrawal penalty of 10% if you’re below the age of 59.5. You’ll also face income tax on your distributions, which can add up to a lot, depending on how much you withdraw and your income tax bracket.

The distribution penalty is the start of your worries. Once the IRS knows that you are storing your gold IRA at home, they may audit your account. If they find out that you’ve broken other rules as well, you may face more penalties besides the ones levied against you for storing gold outside of the IRS-approved depository.

Some gold IRA companies circumvent the IRS regulations by having a structure that allows them to own the gold through an LLC (limited liability company). Although the courts have not addressed this, it’s best to stay away and let the secure storage facility keep your gold safe.

Conclusion: Should Individuals Open Up Gold IRA Accounts?

Investing in physical precious metals through gold IRA accounts have many benefits, such as hedging against inflation and protecting your retirement savings in case of economic uncertainty.

However, one should always diversify by ensuring they invest a portion of their savings in other traditional assets (stocks, bonds, and real estate) instead of precious metals IRA. It’s best to always consult with a financial consultant and discuss your financial situation to explore the options that are best for you.

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Tim Schmidt


Tim Schmidt is an Entrepreneur who has covered retirement investing since 2012. He's also a published author, and his views on investing have been featured in USA Today, Tech Times, The Huffington Post, Nasdaq, and many more.