Acre Gold is a company with a simple, innovative premise. They function as a subscription service for precious metals. Many people don’t have enough savings to purchase gold or silver all at once. But by setting aside some money each month, eventually you’ll have enough to buy a small piece of gold.
That’s the idea behind Acre Gold. You automatically pay a certain preset amount each month, and then once you reach a certain price threshold, you receive a shipment with a piece of gold. These pieces of gold will accumulate over time, so you have your own small precious metals portfolio.
But the subscription service has been marred by complaints and issues. What’s going on behind the scenes? Is it worth investing with Acre Gold, or is their customer service too frustrating to face?
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About Acre Gold
Acre Gold is a precious metals dealer based in Santa Monica. According to the company website, the firm was founded by a group of fintech veterans who wanted to create a digital subscription solution for precious metals. They're passionate about the gold industry, and they believe that more people should be able to build their own precious metals portflio.
Acre Gold seems to have a strong focus on brand loyalty. When you go to their website, you'll find that there's a section just for merch. You can get two Acre Gold t-shirts, a hoodie, and a hat. That's the extent of the company's available merch as of writing.
There's also a "deals" section on the website. But the deals seem to change frequently with the price of gold, and it's difficult to tell how much you'd be saving. Many of Acre Gold's original prices are much higher than the spot price of gold. So their "deals" might not actually be saving you all that much money.
The company operates an online platform that functions as one of the first gold subscription services. Many other subscription services also incorporate the idea of saving up a little at a time. With this plan, you pay anywhere from $30 to $250 per month. Then, once your account has enough money in it, you’ll automatically be shipped a bit of gold.
The subscription tiers are made to cater to people with various financial outlooks. Those who invest $250 a month might be more seriously interested in building up a precious metals portfolio. Meanwhile, people who invest $30 a month might be living paycheck-to-paycheck, but still want to build up tangible assets over time.
There’s no hassle of comparing products or deciding on the right piece of bullion. Each customer is sent the same type of gold from the same mint. The weight of the gold varies depending on the subscription tier. The tiers are as follows:
The 10-gram bar is the biggest one in Acre Gold’s current lineup. They specialize in shipping tiny amounts of gold so that a wider customer base can invest in precious metals.
However, there are some questions to be had about the pricing. The price of these bars fluctuates as the price of gold does. But Acre Gold consistently sells the bars for significantly more than the spot price of gold.
Digital Gold Program
Some people are interested in investing, but they’d prefer not to store their own gold. Home storage is not only a hassle, but it’s also risky. That’s where the “digital gold” service from Acre Gold comes into play.
You’re still buying a tangible gold asset from Acre Gold. You’re still the sole owner of this asset once you reach the threshold to buy it. However, Acre Gold stores the gold for you instead of shipping it to you. You have a digital account that shows you how many pieces of gold you’ve earned.
This model may be beneficial for people who are investing in gold in the short term. If you plan to liquidate your holdings in the future, then you’ll have a hard time finding a buyer right out of your home. Liquidation of the digital gold is much easier.
With the digital gold program, there are just three subscription tiers:
So all of the prices and the gold products are the same, except that there is no $30 subscription tier available.
Pricing and Fees
We’ve already broken down the layout of the subscription model. There are flat monthly costs for flat rewards. The company shouldn’t get more complicated than that, right?
Unfortunately, Acre Gold does have a great deal of different fees associated with its use. When you sign up to use the platform, you have to pay $12 to join. This is a single processing fee, not a recurring cost.
Once you’re about to have gold mailed to you, you’ll also have to pay the fulfillment and shipping costs. These will be taken out of the savings that you have in your account. You can make further payments of fees using credit cards like American Express, Visa, and Mastercard.
Digital gold subscriptions also have shipping and fulfillment fees, even when you aren’t getting the items shipped to you. You’ll have to pay the membership fee and taxes. Plus there’s a storage cost. While it’s only $1 a month, that seems like a ridiculous charge to add to the shipping fees for a package that you aren’t receiving.
You’ll have the option to redeem your digital gold for cash. Acre Gold will give you a “reasonable market price,” although some customers have stated that this estimate is seriously low. If you accept their quote, the shipment will be sent to you with USPS.
Orders are allowed to be cancelled, but it’s difficult to cancel the subscription without a penalty. Shipments can be cancelled if they are delayed after your fulfillment order is sent out. If you ask for a refund from the company, they will remove any processing fees that apply from the total.
All of these add-on costs don’t make a lot of sense, especially given that Acre Gold already overcharges for the gold bars themselves. You could save tons of money every month by simply putting aside some savings yourself and buying a bar from a retailer that includes free shipping.
Is Acre Gold Legitimate?
Acre Gold is a legitimate business, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good one. They run a huge number of advertising campaigns to pull potential investors in. Many of these potential investors don't know a lot about the precious metals industry, so they don't know how to look up reasonable pricing. Acre Gold has the benefit of being a cool-sounding startup, and many investors want to trust in it.
One Redditor made a thread warning other investors about Acre Gold. He said that he made comments on their posts asking them why their prices were so high. His comments were deleted, and he was blocked from interacting with them. He suspected that Acre Gold was deleting other Reddit comments asking questions about their pricing and customer history.
The company is accredited with the BBB and has an A+ rating. But all you need to do to maintain an A+ rating is respond to every customer complaint made against you. Acre Gold has a stunning 53 complaints filed over the past three years. With 29 customer reviews averaging 2.45 stars, it’s safe to say that their customer satisfaction levels are very low.
When a company has this many complaints and poor reviews, it’s nearly always a sign of mismanagement. Looking at the complaints can help to identify patterns, as well as to see how well the company responds to different customer issues. Let’s dig into a couple of the more recent BBB complaints.
There are 53 complaints on the BBB website as of writing. Of those, 33 are related to an issue with a product or a service. Nine are related to delivery issues, seven are related to billing, and two are related to issues with advertising and sales campaigns.
That’s a pretty wide spread of problems. Right away, it seems clear that there’s some level of dysfunction happening within this company.
No Gold Received
A customer left a complaint in October of 2023 regarding an issue with his subscription. He had subscribed to Acre Gold in 2021 so that he could slowly invest while he was deployed. But he had been sending the gold to his family, and had recently found out that they had never received any of the gold.
The customer wanted to cancel his subscription. However, he was under the impression that he had signed up with an email that he could no longer access. Whenever he used his current email to sign in, the website told him that he had an account, but that there were no active subscriptions.
The customer was sure that he did have an active subscription because he was being charged 55 dollars per month. His only request was that the subscription be cancelled.
Acre Gold responded to say that the customer had filed the BBB complaint under false pretenses. To file a BBB complaint, he had to state that he had attempted to resolve the issue with Acre Gold already. Acre Gold had not heard from him.
The company stated that the customer’s subscription had begun in 2022, rather than 2021. Two pieces of gold had been shipped to the customer. The third piece was nearly ready. Acre Gold said that the problem could have been resolved if the customer had reached out in private. They further stated that they had emailed the customer at his new email, but that they hadn’t received a reply.
$1,000 with No Shipments
Another customer left a complaint in October of 2023. They said that they had paid around $1,000 to the Acre Gold subscription service, but they had never received any shipments. When they first signed up for the subscription, they realized that they hadn’t read the fine print. They wanted to cancel immediately but didn’t want to deal with the cancellation fee.
In order to convince the customer to stay, their Acre Gold rep offered them a $75 credit. The customer later reached out and found out that the $75 had never been added to their account. They had paid $100 monthly for nine months, and they had never been shipped any gold bars.
When the customer reached out to Acre Gold for an explanation, they were told that the company was dealing with a shortage of gold bars. So the customer waited for one more month. No gold bars were sent. The customer messaged the company representative asking how much longer Acre Gold would take their money without sending any compensation, but there was no response.
Acre Gold responded on the same day to say that the customer had received responses to their emails in a reasonable frame of time. However, they said that the customer was not checking their inbox for replies before sending more emails to the customer service department.
They contested the allegation that they had said their supplier was out of gold. Instead, they said that they had told the customer that their mint was dealing with circumstances that were causing inventory shipments to be delayed. They claimed that the customer hadn’t actually paid $1,000 over the course of their subscription.
Acre Gold said that they made the executive decision to cancel the customer’s account and shipment because it was clear that the customer was not interested in their emails. They processed a full refund for the customer of the payments so far. They alleged that the complaint was written several days after the refund had already processed.
The customer never responded to this, so presumably they received the refund as promised.
In September of 2023, a customer left an irate complaint about a billing issue. They said that over the course of their subscription, Acre Gold had taken $300 from their bank account over five months. But the customer had yet to be sent a single bar.
Acre Gold responded to say that the customer would have reached the shipping threshold with their fifth payment. After the fifth payment was made, Acre Gold was going to send the customer a fulfillment email that included a shipping date. But the customer filed the complaint before they could.
Acre Gold alleged that the customer didn’t even contact them about the issue until the fulfillment email was sent. Once the email was sent out, the customer became upset about the shipping date. So Acre Gold complied with the customer’s request and cancelled the shipment and the account, then refunded the payments made.
The Common Denominator
In all three of these complaints, Acre Gold’s response has been very defensive. They have repeatedly claimed that the customers have not contacted them before filing frivolous complaints with the BBB. Then they have stated that the customers were incorrect about their shipments and acting irrationally.
This defense might make sense if it was just one truly unreasonable customer. But the common denominator in this pattern is Acre Gold.
Why are so many customers confused about when their shipment will be sent out? Why is the subscription service not more explicit about how much people will pay, and when their gold will be received? Why are so many shipments being sent out late?
It’s perfectly reasonable for customers to be upset when they’ve paid hundreds of dollars for a product that doesn’t ship. It’s perfectly reasonable to expect that Acre Gold would keep enough inventory on hand to fulfill the needs of their clients, even during supply chain issues.
Whatever is happening here is a pattern in which Acre Gold refuses to take any potential responsibility for the situation, blames the customer, and then allows it to happen again. It seems like it would just make more sense for them to evaluate their internal practices and adjust their business model.
Pros & Cons of Acre Gold
Acre Gold is a company that is built around a good idea and a reasonable business model. It makes a lot of sense for people to save up in small increments to buy precious metals, especially considering the exorbitant price of gold. With a steady stream of deliverables, the company should have made precious metals investments much more accessible to people without many savings.
Unfortunately, that doesn’t appear to be what’s happened.
This business is plagued by a constant stream of complaints. Even though the service that they offer is very simple, the management seems to be struggling to follow through. Delayed shipments and unclear payment timelines are common. Customers say that they’ve tried to get in contact with Acre Gold, only for Acre Gold to claim that nobody has ever emailed or called them.
Even when customers do receive their shipments on time, the pricing is much higher than it should be. You could save money in a separate account each month and then buy yourself a small piece of gold from a different broker. You’d find a much lower price than the one that Acre Gold charges.
The company is not a scam. It does deliver the products that it promises, and it does process refunds when customers ask for them. But the customer service leaves something to be desired. And there seems to be something seriously off about the management if such a simple premise is so hard to execute.
We don’t recommend that you work with Acre Gold under any circumstances. If anything, we recommend that you save the price of a subscription yourself, then buy your own gold from an accredited dealer after a few months.
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