Can I Put Physical Gold in My IRA?

Before investing in a gold IRA, it is crucial that you fully comprehend its rules and fees. Take time to compare different options until you find one that aligns best with your financial goals.

Physical gold IRAs require an IRS-approved depository in which to store the precious metals. Unlike stocks and mutual funds, investors cannot store physical gold at home as this would constitute a distribution and result in taxes and penalties being assessed on it.

Self-directed IRAs

Gold-backed individual retirement accounts (IRAs) can be an ideal way to diversify portfolios. Before investing, however, it is crucial that investors understand all of the rules and fees.

Tax regulations prevent IRA holders from owning collectibles such as gold coins; however, there are ways around this restriction. One is setting up a self-directed IRA with an approved custodian that accepts precious metals as assets.

Next, locate a company that specializes in selling and storing gold for IRAs. You can search online for “self-directed IRA.” Some custodians who specialize in SDIRAs offer segregated storage – where your gold will remain separate from that of other clients – while others provide commingled storage, where precious metals will be mixed in with those belonging to other accounts. Both methods of storage can be safely secured; you should choose which option best meets your needs.


As a general rule, an IRA cannot purchase physical precious metal coins or bullion because such investments are considered collectibles for tax purposes. Collectible gains held for less than one year will be subject to 28% long-term capital-gains tax (LTCG), much higher than what most investments incur under standard long-term capital-gains taxes of 15% long-term capital-gains taxes (LTCG).

However, there are ways around this restriction. Instead of purchasing coins or bullion directly through their IRA, investors can purchase shares in gold ETFs that track specific precious metal prices instead. While such investments are seen by the IRS as indirect ownership of precious metals, they still allow investors to diversify their retirement portfolio with low-risk assets.

Gold IRAs work similarly to traditional and Roth IRAs in that you can contribute up to $6,500 by 2023 or the maximum applicable to your age, making withdrawals penalty-free when reaching age 59 1/2. There may also be fees associated with maintaining one such as storage and insurance costs.


Fees associated with an IRA account can quickly add up and reduce your rate of return, depending on which custodian and type of investments are chosen as well as custodial costs and investment type options available to you. It’s crucial that you carefully evaluate all available alternatives when choosing an IRA solution.

If you buy or sell gold from a dealer, commission rates will usually apply and storage fees if your metals are held with others in an account. Some dealers also charge additional service or transaction fees.

Another potential fee charged by your IRA custodian is a wire transfer fee, typically expressed as a percentage of the transfer amount and should be included as part of your agreement paperwork.


Some investors prefer storing gold at home within their IRA as it allows quick and easy access. However, IRS-approved depository must be used as precious metals IRAs must adhere to withdrawal regulations separate from IRA account regulations.

Reasoning behind this rule: Because precious metals don’t produce dividends or interest like stocks do, investors cannot withdraw them tax-free when making other purchases. Furthermore, physical gold storage costs can be significant and dealers typically offer prices lower than current market values when selling the precious metals back.

Some IRA dealers work with reputable depository facilities that can store clients’ investments safely; many include insurance as part of their plans. If you choose to store precious metals yourself at home, make sure you work with a reliable dealer and regularly inspect it to ensure its security.

Raymond Banks Administrator
Raymond Banks is a published author in the commodity world. He has written extensively about gold and silver investments, and his work has been featured in some of the most respected financial journals in the industry. Raymond\\\'s expertise in the commodities market is highly sought-after, and he regularly delivers presentations on behalf of various investment firms. He is also a regular guest on financial news programmes, where he offers his expert insights into the latest commodity trends.

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