Diversify Your Retirement With a Self Directed IRA

What is the difference between an IRA and selfdirected IRA

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA) are managed by brokerage houses that invest in common financial assets like stocks and bonds, making them attractive options for investors looking to diversify their investment portfolios.

Self-directed IRAs allow account holders to diversify their portfolio with investments such as property, mortgage notes, foreign currency, annuities, raw land and limited liability companies – although fees may be associated with these investments.


Self-directed IRAs allow you to invest in assets outside the traditional stocks, mutual funds and bonds found in traditional brokerage accounts. As with all retirement accounts, self-directed IRAs must comply with IRS regulations and refrain from engaging in any prohibited transactions. Additionally, IRAs must be administered by an expert trustee or custodian, who oversees assets while recording transactions, filing IRS reports and issuing statements about them. One client of mine used her self-directed IRA to purchase investment property and receive rental income, which can either be taxed as Unrelated Business Taxable Income (UBTI) or Unrelated Debt Financed Income (UDFI), depending on how the property was setup and its terms.

Experts advise investors with self-directed IRAs to take the time and make inquiries about any investments they’re considering, particularly alternative assets like real estate, private equity, precious metals, checkbook IRA/LLCs and tax liens.


Self-directed IRAs offer smart investors looking to diversify their retirement portfolio and potentially earn higher returns an easy and flexible solution. These accounts allow investors to diversify by investing in nontraditional assets such as real estate, mortgage notes, foreign currency, annuities raw land and limited liability companies through specialized exchanges that work with self-directed IRA custodians – though it’s important that any information in account statements such as prices and asset values be verified as these investments may be difficult or illiquid investments that make valuation difficult or impossible!

Notably, self-directed IRAs must abide by complex IRS rules. You cannot hold rental properties you reside in or collectibles like artwork, antiques, rugs metals and coins within them without complying with additional taxes or penalties; as a result, it’s wise to consult a tax advisor before investing in these types of assets. In addition, self-directed IRAs must abide by required minimum distribution (RMD) rules.


Self-directed IRAs do offer more flexibility than traditional IRAs; however, their higher fees and additional administration are an additional burden that could hinder investment returns and lower investment returns.

Self-directed IRAs allow investors to invest in a wide array of assets, such as precious metals, promissory notes and real estate in addition to traditional investments like stocks and bonds. However, it is important to remember that the IRS has rules you must abide by.

Example: It is forbidden for an IRA-owned property to be bought or sold with disqualified individuals, such as yourself. This practice is known as self-dealing and should be avoided at all costs.

An IRA cannot invest in certain assets such as collectibles or life insurance, nor lend money directly to yourself for living expenses – these actions are known as prohibited transactions and could incur costly tax bills and penalties. Therefore, when opening a self-directed IRA it’s wise to consult a trusted IRA professional, legal advisor, or tax expert.


Traditional and Roth IRAs allow you to invest in stocks, mutual funds and other approved investments. But for greater control in your retirement planning, a self-directed IRA may be worth exploring.

Self-directed IRAs allow you to invest in alternative assets, including real estate, private companies and precious metals; checkbook IRA LLCs; notes; and cryptocurrency. Just be mindful that an SDIRA custodian does not provide advice or perform due diligence on your chosen investments.

Additionally, the IRS imposes restrictions on what assets you can purchase with your self-directed IRA, such as collectibles or life insurance policies. A good financial advisor can help find alternatives and conduct the appropriate research – not to mention helping with required minimum distributions (RMDs) you must take at age 70.5 or 72 depending on whether your account is traditional or Roth. They can also help avoid high custodian fees that often depend on asset value of an IRA account.

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