Silver IRA Rollover

Silver IRA Rollover

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A silver IRA is a retirement account whose assets are tied up in silver, rather than being liquid cash. Silver IRAs have certain regulations and setup rules that everyone must abide by. In addition, they also require a significant amount of paperwork to be filed.

Now you might be wondering: Can I roll over the cash from my current retirement account, and use that to buy silver?

The answer is: Yes, but only if you follow all of the rules. We've broken down the federal regulations and the setup process to help you out.

Classifying a Silver IRA

Silver IRA Rollover

It hasn't always been legal to put silver into your retirement account. In fact, this option has been available for less than 30 years. It was introduced in the Taxpayer Relief Act from 1997, which was federal legislation that expanded the retirement account options available to Americans.

The Relief Act states that people can hold gold, silver, platinum, and palladium in their retirement account. It must be in the form of coins or bars, and it must be pure bullion. It cannot be a historic coin or numismatic rarity, and it cannot be a coin or bar that you already own in a personal collection.

All of the precious metals are subject to purity standards. For silver, the items must all be at least 99.5% pure. This is the lowest purity standard of the four included precious metals, but it is still rather high.

Precious metals are defined as "alternative" assets. This means that they are not traditional holdings like mutual funds, stocks, bonds, and cash. They are assets that provide either an alternative income stream or an alternative source to liquidate.

Other common alternative assets are cryptocurrency and real estate.

Alternative assets can't be kept in a traditional retirement account. You can't store them in a 401(k) or an IRA with an investment manager. If you want to put these assets into your retirement savings, then you need a self-directed IRA.

As the name implies, a self-directed IRA is one that you fully control. You decide exactly what you're going to buy and who you're going to buy it from. You can diversify your portfolio however you want, or you can place all of your eggs in one basket.

Investment professionals often say that it's a good idea to invest a small portion of your savings into gold and silver. But you shouldn't invest the entirety of your holdings, because then there will be very limited potential for growth. Silver doesn't pay dividends the same way that other assets do.

Creating a Self-Directed IRA

Silver IRA Rollover

You might already have a 401(k) or IRA plan through your employer. If this is a traditional plan, though, then you'll need a separate account to buy gold.

The first step is setting up the account itself. You'll need to find a trustworthy custodian to manage the assets. A custodian is a financial institution that has been licensed by the IRS to manage this account. Some custodians can only manage traditional IRAs, while others specialize in self-directed IRAs instead.

If you have a precious metals dealer in mind already, they may have one or more partnered custodians to choose from. That takes a lot of the hassle out of the process. We've named our top choices at the end of this article.

The custodian will typically have a basic application to open the account. You'll need to provide contact information and basic personal information, as well as some financial information. As long as you have everything on hand, it usually doesn't take more than ten minutes to fill this paperwork out.

Once the paperwork is filed, the account will be created. This process often takes place within 48 hours, depending on how fast your custodian works.

But then you have to fund your account. If you simply make a contribution from your savings, then that's a simple bank wire transfer. But if you want to move your retirement funds from one existing account to another, the process becomes more complicated.

Silver IRA Rollovers

Silver IRA Rollover

So you've opened a self-directed IRA with a licensed custodian because you want to buy silver. But the account is empty. You need to move money into it, and then use those liquid assets to buy the silver.

Most people choose to transfer funds from their existing retirement savings. You might be concerned about the legality of this. Is it possible to move your assets from a 401(k) or IRA to a different retirement account without issue?

Yes! This is called a rollover, and it is explicitly permitted by the IRS. But you only have 60 days to do it from the moment the new account is created. If more than 60 days goes by, then the IRS considers the transfer to be a distribution payment. If you haven't yet reached the age of retirement, then you will be given a tax penalty plus additional financial penalties.

You will need to fill out paperwork with information about your old account, new account, and the amount of funds that you want transferred. This means contacting your old custodian and new custodian alike. Sometimes your new custodian will manage the phone interactions with your old custodian; sometimes a silver IRA company will handle both custodians on your behalf.

It can be stressful to initiate this process completely on your own. Your old custodian might not be happy to relinquish your funds, so they may stall on purpose. The paperwork itself might seem too complex and full of jargon. The 60 day limit gives you plenty of time, but time can easily slip away if you're busy with work and other concerns.

For this reason, we highly recommend looking for a silver IRA specialist before you get started. They'll be able to answer your in-depth questions about the rollover regulations, and they will oftentimes take care of part or all of the process for you.

Gold Versus Silver IRA

Silver IRA Rollover

Many silver IRA companies also offer gold products as well. Some offer platinum and palladium, too. You may be wondering how a silver IRA differs from a gold IRA, and what you should look for in a company.

The main difference between a silver and gold IRA is simply... silver and gold. But you can store both precious metals in the same account. You can even store them in the same vault. So if you want to buy a combination of silver and gold with your assets, that can be done without needing to open any extra accounts.

There are far more similarities between silver and gold IRAs than differences. Both are precious metals. Both must be maintained by your custodian and kept in an IRS-approved depository. Both are tangible assets that are purchased using your retirement funds. Both perform well when the economy is in shambles.

The two precious metals also have similar risks. As mentioned, they don't pay dividends, so there's less potential for growth than with some traditional assets. There's a wide gap between the bid and spread prices, so you often won't sell the metals back for the same amount you paid. Both have ongoing fees due to the necessary storage and maintenance.

Most custodians will roll the maintenance fees for gold and silver into one sum. But some use percentage-based calculations, taking a different percentage of your assets depending on if you're storing silver or gold.

It's better to seek out flat fees. Flat fees remain the same every year or quarter no matter how much money you have in your account. So you always know exactly what you'll pay, and you aren't punished for saving up more over time.

Silver has a few investment benefits that gold doesn't. It has more practical applications than any of the other IRA-eligible precious metals, which has an effect on global supply and demand. The vast majority of silver in the world is used in manufacturing. As the supply dwindles, there will be an increased demand for silver to meet people's manufacturing needs.

Benefits of Silver Investment

Silver IRA Rollover

Silver is one of four precious metals that you can keep in a retirement account, with the other three being gold, palladium, and platinum. Precious metals all share basic benefits of being tangible assets that hedge against economic problems. But silver also has some other unique advantages.

Industrial Use

Silver is used for more industrial and electronic applications than any of the other precious metals that you can invest in. It is a practical type of metal because of its thermal conduction, electrical conduction, and overall strength. Another advantage is that silver can freeze and heat up to very high temperatures without buckling or melting.

There aren't any other materials that can mimic all of silver's properties at once. They might have one or two things in common, but silver will always be the most versatile winner. So there's a strong demand for it on the industrial and economic level.

Here's a statistic that might shock you: About three-fourths of all of the silver in the entire world is used in manufacturing. There is silver found in solar panels, batteries, televisions, film, microwaves, and medical instruments.

There will continue to be a need to create items with silver in medical and industrial settings. But there isn't an infinite supply of silver on the planet. While many silver mining operations currently exist, it's becoming more and more difficult to extract new silver from within the earth. The rarer silver becomes, the more valuable it will be.

Worldwide Demand

Silver isn't just popular in the US. It is popular all over the globe, and it has been for thousands of years. This investment isn't just a passing fad.

The governments in India and China have purposefully acquired large amounts of silver as a governmental asset. Silver can even be bought at an average local bank in China, since the government wants to encourage people to invest their items in silver bullion.

There is also a global demand for gold, but interest in silver has spiked recently due to its usefulness in manufacturing.


Some people are interested in silver because it is the most affordable of the IRA precious metals. You need to have thousands of dollars to spend on a few ounces of gold, but you can get the same amount of silver for a few hundred dollars instead.

If you want to invest in precious metals but don't have enough savings to buy gold, then it makes sense to buy silver instead.

Just keep in mind that some storage companies have different rules for storing gold and silver. Since silver is cheaper, people are more likely to buy it in bulk. So you may have to pay additional fees if you have a lot of silver in your vault, whereas gold wouldn't incur the same debt.

Top Companies to Help with a Silver IRA Rollover

Silver IRA Rollover

Many companies claim to have "IRA services," but they don't actually help you much. Instead, they connect you to a custodian and expect said custodian to manage everything. Then they offer you a small selection of IRA products.

On the other hand, there are some companies that specialize in IRAs. Their goal is to help customers access these accounts even without a financial background. These places have experts in-house who help not only with setting up your account, but also with the rollover process.

We've compiled a list of our top picks for the best companies to work with if you want to initiate a silver IRA rollover.

#1. Goldco


As long as you have at least $25,000 to invest, Goldco makes buying gold and silver a breeze. They manage all of your custodian communication and walk you through the rollover paperwork. If your old custodian needs to be hunted down or called repeatedly, your company representative will do that.

Goldco has a great reputation and has won numerous awards over the years. Their customer service is among the best in the industry.

Augusta Precious Metals

Augusta Precious Metals is another great company, although you need at least $50,000 to invest. If you meet this threshold, you'll get access to ongoing perks like a lifetime of customer support. That includes market updates, newsletters, and a representative who's always available to answer questions.

Augusta also has one-on-one webinars available for free, even if you haven't bought anything yet. So if you have questions about the rollover process, you might make use of this resource as well.

American Hartford Gold

American Hartford Gold doesn't have a minimum investment, so you can use this company even if you can't afford the other two top picks. The lack of fees doesn't mean that AHG is lower quality, though. They have an amazing reputation and excellent customer service, and they make it super simple to roll over your silver IRA.

The company is also known for running promotional campaigns like waiving the first year of fees for your IRA, or sending you free silver if you make a qualifying purchase of gold.

Final Thoughts

A silver IRA rollover is managed in the same way that a gold IRA rollover is. But this process can be a major hassle, especially if your old account custodian drags their feet in the process. Sometimes these companies can be slow to relinquish your funds, and you need to finish the transfer within 60 days.

While the paperwork is straightforward, it can also be time consuming to file and track down. That goes especially for if you need to call one or both custodians multiple times. You simply don't have that much time in your busy day.

That's why it's a good idea to use the IRA services from a reputable gold and silver dealer. Companies specializing in retirement accounts will explain the regulations and sometimes handle your phone calls for you.

Goldco is one of these. They have by far the best and most streamlined approach to setting up a silver IRA. As soon as you've filled out your rollover paperwork, you're in the clear. You no longer need to worry. Your company representative will make sure that the paperwork is filed and that the transfer is completed between your custodians within the allotted time frame.

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