Best Gold Investment Companies of 2023: Top Precious Metals IRA Custodians | Pittsburgh City Paper

Best Gold Investment Companies of 2023: Top Precious Metals IRA Custodians

In recent years, gold has become a source of stable and steady growth against the more volatile stock market. A result is an increasing number of retirement investors choosing to invest in gold IRAs to expand and protect their portfolios against inflation and stock market volatility. If you have yet to consider it, this would be the best place to learn more about gold IRAs and know the Best Gold Investment Companies.

An Overview of the Top 5 Gold Investing Companies for 2023

  1. Augusta Precious Metals: Editor's Choice - Great Gold IRA Company Overall (4.9/5)

  2. Red Rock Secured: Runner up - Best at Home Gold IRA (4.8/5)

  3. Goldco: Great Buyback Program (4.6/5)

  4. American Hartford Gold: Best Prices on Bullions (4.5/5)

  5. Birch Gold Group: Great Staff Overall (4.2/5)

#1 Augusta Precious Metals: Editor's Choice - Great Gold IRA Company Overall (4.9/5)

Augusta Precious Metals is an award-winning leader in the precious metals retirement industry. They have not received any complaints from the BBB since the company was established over a decade ago. The company provides customers with information on how to invest in precious metals.

Augusta offers silver and gold investment plans and uses the Delaware Depository, one of the most popular gold IRA companies, to protect their customers' assets.

Customers will find many customer education materials on its site. One thing that makes Augusta popular is its video-blog series on why not to invest in gold. Some companies use scare tactics or play on potential investors' fear of a complete financial system crash and the collapse of the U.S. dollar.


  • The company's economists trained in Harvard provide free one-on-one education video conferences.

  • They offer a low-cost and transparent fee structure.

  • They offer a money-back guarantee.

  • They Provide fair pricing on acquisitions.

  • They offer lifetime customer support.

  • Encourages customers to avail of diverse investments.

  • Informative video content on site.

  • Offers waived fees for ten years.

  • Zero complaints with the BBB and BCA.

  • Voted as the most trusted IRA company in the U.S.


  • Absence of online sales.

  • They do not offer platinum or palladium.

  • They require a minimum purchase order of $50,000, which is significantly high.

When you look at the different IRA companies, there is a vast difference in their pricing. A lot of companies offer a low-cost fee structure, and however, only a few of them reveal all the fees they collect.

With Augusta, the fee structure and pricing scheme are straightforward, and the company is completely transparent, allowing customers to make informed decisions.

Being company-owned, the company has built its reputation of integrity and complete transparency ever since it was introduced to the public in 2012. The company further reinforces its customer's trust by giving new customers a 100% money-back guarantee and fair pricing, including 7-day price protection.

Augusta works with the Delaware Depository, one of the industry's leaders. They have vault locations all over the U.S. Overall, the company's customer service support is excellent, constantly receiving high consumer ratings.

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#2 Red Rock Secured: Runner up - Best at Home Gold IRA (4.8/5)

Red Rock Secured is a privately-owned precious metals company located in Southern California. They aim to safeguard their clients' retirement through a scholarly approach. They do this while offering premium and unique retirement products and providing excellent customer assistance.

In short, Red Rock Secured is an organization constructed on values and integrity. Upon working with Red Rock Secured, they assigned us a precious metals educator to help with our transactions. They focused on providing us with a tailor-fitted option to diversify our portfolio further.

Drawing from our first-hand experience, Red Rock Secured helped us control, grow, and protect our precious metal assets, such as gold and silver. This is a green flag for anyone looking for a gold IRA company that offers a worry-free retirement for its clients.

What makes them stand out among its competitors is that the organization's CEO, Sean Kelly, personally scans and sometimes replies to their clients' reviews on sites like Trustpilot. He also responds to negative comments.

With this behavior, Red Rock Secured clients will be more comfortable asking questions regarding precious metal individual retirement accounts as the financial team guarantees they will listen.

Here are some of the specific advantages and disadvantages we encountered with Red Rock Secured:


  • Offers free consultation

  • No hidden charges with transactions

  • Provides free delivery and insurance for newly acquired precious metal commodities

  • Has a massive selection of top-tier precious metals depositories throughout the USA

  • With only three uncomplicated steps to invest in their precious metal individual retirement accounts (IRAs)


  • No prior notice for shipping delays

  • They can be unresponsive during phone calls

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#3 Goldco: Great Buyback Program (4.6/5)

One of the top companies in the precious metals sector is Goldco. For over a decade, the business has assisted retirees in safeguarding their retirement funds. They assist new retirees in opening an account. They also help people in facilitating the transfer of their IRAs, 401Ks, 403Ks, and other retirement accounts from other companies or institutions to Goldco.

They have been enjoying a good rating from the Better Business Bureau, and the Business Consumer Alliance gave them a Triple-A rating. Their account reps are known to go the extra mile to ensure prospective and existing customers are shown all the needed information to allow them to make an informed decision. Hence, they score high in giving quality customer support.


  • It offers gold and silver IRAs.

  • It offers lower-than-average fees.

  • It provides up to $10,000 in free silver coins for newly qualified accounts.

  • It offers extensive educational resources for both new and existing customers.

  • It gives free storage to non-IRA precious metals for cash transactions over $25,000.

  • Goldco reps have over a century of combined experience on the job.

  • BBB gave it an A+ rating.

  • Excellent customer support.


  • It Offers only gold and silver IRAs.

  • The minimum investment is $25,000.

  • Accounts cannot be set up online.

  • They do not offer gold IRA custodians or storage services.

No other company goes to great lengths to present every important investment information in an objective and organized way to gain the trust of their customers. In all the years that they have been in service, they have built a reputation for giving superior customer service. It is their customer-centric commitment that the company has earned positive reviews on most review sites.

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#4 American Hartford Gold: Best Prices on Bullions (4.5/5)

American Hartford Gold is another family-owned business industry leader. It offers precious metals and precious metal IRAs. You can choose a gold IRA to protect your retirement savings. Gold IRAs are an alternative to the traditional IRA, which is used to access stocks, bonds, and other similar investments.

The company offers to diversify retirement savings with the primary purpose of improving your long-term portfolio returns.

You will not be charged for setting up your IRA account, shipping and tracking your precious metals, or insurance. Depository fees will depend on the amount of your investment.

The company's online precious metals catalog needs a list of the prices, and a company representative will have to speak with you about them. No gold, silver, or platinum price charts are also indicated on their website.


  • The company's pricing is considered one of the industry's best. Customers are assured of the company's transparency and prompt adjustments to reflect current market prices. Immediate changes allow the company to provide customers with good deals. Before your purchase, you will be provided with the total amount, including additional charges, if any.

  • Offers 24/7 customer support, catering to the different concerns of potential and existing customers.

  • The company provides a buyback guarantee. The company presents an option to their customers to sell their precious metals to them first, minus the usual liquidation fees.

  • Extensive market and industry knowledge backed up by experience. They provide potential and existing investors with intelligent market analysis and helpful IRA tips.

  • The company strictly follows industry protocols to protect its precious metal assets' integrity, value, and structure. Customers are assured of the quality handling of shipments.

  • They guarantee complete non-disclosure sale transactions and purchases. Customers have assured privacy as the precious physical metal shipments are safe and in nondescript packages.


  • Their website has no pricing list; a company representative will discuss rates with customers.

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#5 Birch Gold: Best Gold IRA Staff Overall

Birch Gold Group has been in the precious metals business for almost 20 years. The company has a team of professionals dedicated to educating potential and existing customers on diversifying their savings, including their IRAs. They boast precious metal specialists with extensive industry experience and aim to provide optimum customer service.

This IRA company has successfully helped many retirees move their IRA, 401k, and other retirement accounts from bonds, stocks, and mutual funds into IRAS backed by physical gold and silver. The company gives its customers two choices: purchasing Birch Gold for delivery or rolling their retirement savings into precious metals IRA.


  • The company offers options for custodian and depository facilities.

  • They offer a wide variety of precious metals.

  • Their website is simple and user-friendly.

  • You are given a flat-rate fee structure if you are an investor with large balances.

  • Good quality customer service.


  • The asset transfer process to set up an account takes one month.

  • The flat-rate fee structure is relatively high for small investors.

  • The company has no price guarantees, and price listings are not immediately available, among others. Set-up fees are not directly discussed.

  • Customers have to pay shipping fees.

  • They do not work with conventional IRAs.

  • Absence of overseas deposit options.

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Why You Should Invest in Gold IRA Companies

Investors looking to diversify their retirement portfolio usually consider purchasing gold IRAs (Individual Retirement Accounts). The prices of gold generally move in the opposite direction of the more common paper assets. In addition, having a gold IRA in an investor's retirement portfolio is an insurance policy in case inflation happens.

For one, gold is not, in any way, affected by inflation. Hence, its value remains stable under any economic conditions. It has been a top-ranking commodity for centuries.

Due to scarcity and high demand, precious metals continue to be highly valued, and as a bonus, investors enjoy tax cuts from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Lastly, precious metals are safe investments, highly valued, and can be transferred from generation to generation.

It is essential to point out that, though owning precious metals is still subject to IRS guidelines, maintaining an IRA account is one of the requirements.

Benefits of a Gold IRA

A gold IRA can provide tax advantages, diversify investments, increase liquidity, and ensure stability. Furthermore, gold IRAs help protect against inflation and offer an effective hedge against stock market volatility.

The Rising Price of Gold

Gold prices ranged from $255/ounce in September 1999 to $1,937 in August 2020. As of June 1, 2022, gold costs $1,848.70/ounce. While there may be some periods of retrenching, you can still see that there has been significant growth over the years.

Opening a gold IRA allows investors to purchase precious physical metals like gold, silver, platinum, and even palladium rather than more traditional assets like stocks, bonds, and cash.

A reputable company can quote the most current market prices for gold. Please note that the value of a single gold coin differs from another, but you won't see a dip in the prices that they'll lose their weight.

Long-term Safeguard and Protection

The spending power of paper money decreases as more copies are printed and distributed to the public. In addition, global events like pandemics and wars directly affect the value of currencies. It can also be said for other paper assets like bonds and stocks. Their discount will depend on the performance of the issuing company. So, when the company incurs losses, its stock value will drop.

Physical gold is not very liquid, but so are IRA holdings. Considering that this will be for a buy-and-hold type of long-term investment, gold is the most appropriate for an IRA account because you will only touch those assets for a short time, usually, once you retire.


The stock market is unstable, and fluctuations and crashes will be inevitable. If you only have one asset, and the market suffers a huge loss, you also stand to lose everything. The best option is a gold IRA because you can quickly diversify your precious metals portfolio.

If you invest in gold coins and bullion, you can also invest in stocks from the institutions that mine them. Remember that stocks are still subject to the market's volatility.

Tax Benefits

With your gold investment comes a few perks from the IRS. Your assets might be given deferments or exemptions. A tax deferment means you can wait to pay taxes for your gold investment. On the other hand, a tax exemption means there are no taxes to pay at all.

There are sets of rules that you need to follow to be eligible for the benefits.

For example, with limitations, you can contribute a part of your savings to your gold IRA yearly. If you frequently exceed the limit, the IRS classifies this as tax evasion, and you'll be penalized for it. If you have a competent gold IRA company, they will ensure you know these rules and advise you on how to comply.

Things to Be Aware of before Opening a Gold IRA

Before you open a gold IRA account, it is essential to understand a few key components. These include understanding the process, researching options, and familiarizing yourself with applicable rules and regulations.

Fees and Expenses

When opening a gold IRA account, you must consider various fees, such as set-up, storage, and management fees. Prices typically range from $250 to $350 for the first year and from $150 to $250 for subsequent years. Investment minimums vary significantly across companies, with some offering the lowest possible minimum investment of as low as $5,000 while most suggest an above minimum investment of between $10,000 and $50,000. Remember to ask around and read reviews on best gold investment companies before making a choice; some companies offer promotions such as free precious metals upon opening an account or waived fees for the first year.

No Yield, No Dividends, No Interest

It would help if you were mindful that, unlike stocks and bonds, a gold IRA does not generate income, distribute dividends, or augment its value in any way. Its worth increases due to long-term inflation and risk of uncertainty, such as war and other countries' solvency.

Fraud and Theft

You must be aware of the possibility of fraud and theft when investing in a gold IRA; therefore, you must select a reputable company. Counterfeit coins are sadly circulating, and you do not want to become a victim of these criminals. For this reason, reputed companies must follow industry protocols and guidelines, including the prohibition of counterfeits. Furthermore, they must implement two layers of protection for their vaults and $1 billion in insurance against theft - surpassing industry standards. Rest assured that such security measures will keep your investment safe and secure.

An Investor's Guide to Buying Gold for an IRA

This buyer's guide will be helpful once you fully decide to invest in a gold IRA.

Speak with a Financial Advisor or Lawyer

Consult a financial advisor or lawyer for guidance concerning wealth management, money matters, and your gold ira providers, individual retirement accounts, and IRA. An investment product recommendation or assistance with plan development are both services that a financial advisor can provide. To develop a detailed plan for your gold ira services and individual retirement accounts, they will evaluate your financial condition, future goals, and retirement plans. Consider having them set up your gold ira accounts or IRA account and let them guide and educate you to ensure wise investment of your gold personal retirement accounts and funds.

Review Current News for Fraud Alerts

Aside from getting a financial advisor, it is essential to be aware of the problems that might arise. One of them is fraud and theft. Look for the latest updates on fraud alerts.

Usually, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission or CFTC posts advisories and guidelines and check their updates. Confirm the registration status of the gold IRA company you intend to do business with, the CFTC or the National Futures Association. In addition, you can also ask for any company's complete background and if they have a history of violations.

Doing your research before choosing a gold IRA company would be advantageous. Learn about their history, their ratings from BBB, and what their actual customers are saying. As CFTC advises investors, it is essential to ask, ask, and ask some more before investing in precious metals.

Find a Gold IRA Custodian and Establish the IRA

The benefits you get from your gold IRA investment will depend on the company you choose. With the top four gold IRA custodians we mentioned above, you'll notice that each has its features, offers, and benefits.

The best choice will be the one that can provide what you need. While Augusta tops the list, Gold Birch may provide the most advantageous features and deals. It would help to establish what you want to get, research the companies, then decide.

You'll also have to consider that setting up an IRA account may differ for every state. In this case, you need to choose a custodian that will be able to guide you and help you navigate every step of the way.

Establish and Fund the IRA

You have several options on how to fund your IRA account. You can choose a one-time lump-sum payment or monthly and yearly contributions. Your selected gold IRA company will help you through the process, whatever your choice, so your money won't go to waste.

You don't need to worry about the financing process taking a long time—a few days to a few weeks—because the custodian of your gold IRA will handle it on your behalf. Once completed, your gold IRA custodian will send a check to your IRA company, informing you about the completion of the transfer.

Invest in Augusta Precious Metals via IRA

Upon setting up your IRA account, you may use the funds to make your investments. Every gold IRA company has its own set of processes. However, most gold ira companies'' gold ira fees for investing also entail the following:

  • Choosing precious metal products.

  • Establishing the amount.

  • Paying.

  • Sending the effect to the vault affiliated with the gold IRA custodian company.

To facilitate the transaction, you must talk to a company agent to place your order. A quality IRA company can give you some guidance to assist you in determining whether or not you will purchase at their current price.

You can complete the transaction when confident that this will be the best decision. The precious metals will then be transferred to your name, and you'll have to track their value every year because there might be changes in the market value. It is important to monitor because doing so allows you to determine if you will avail of the buyback option of the gold IRA company or hold on for as long as possible. Most custodians recommend holding on to your gold for as long as possible.

Gold IRA Rollovers

Facilitate the funding for your IRA account; your savings should be converted through a rollover. The rollover process for a gold IRA and any retirement account is the same.

Your application form will be sent to the gold IRA custodian and the IRA company, who will interact to facilitate the fund transfer. Once completed, you will be informed by the IRA custodian that the rollover has been completed. At this point, you can start investing.

401K Gold IRA Rollovers

The moment you get your gold IRA, you'll have the option of doing a 401k rollover. The process is the same, and you'll have to inform the company managing your 401k account so that they can begin the rollover process.

You will have two options – direct or indirect 401k rollover. With a direct rollover, you will convert whatever amount is stored in your account into your gold IRA account. As for indirect rollover, you will first withdraw funds from your 401k account and manually transfer them to your gold IRA account.

Note that with indirect rollover, you'll have up to 60 days to transfer the money you withdrew to your IRA account. Failure to do so will result in capital gains tax and a 10% penalty if you haven't yet reached the standard retirement age.

Some investors hesitate about the 401k rollover because the process can be too much hassle. Their concern is valid. Investing 100% of your retirement investments in stocks would mean no diversity in your portfolio.

By converting about 5% to 8% of your portfolio to your gold IRA account, you'll have some safety net for your investment, whatever changes occur in the economy.

It is essential to mention that the processes may differ from one company to another.

5 Things to Look for When Choosing a Reputable Gold IRA Company

The four listed companies are undoubtedly the top four best-forming gold IRA companies. Your choice will depend on which company can provide you with whatever you need.

To further help you make an informed decision, we have listed five factors to consider when looking for a gold IRA company.


You'll find many online resources like review sites, Which will help you find the information you need. For instance, you can visit the sites of some of the consumer rights monitoring agencies to learn more about how the BBB and others rate the different gold IRA companies.

Typically, the ratings will be based on customer experience with the company. The ratings may or may not reflect the consensus of customers for particular IRA companies.

In addition, it would be inevitable that a company will receive complaints from customers. Still, you'll find out that the negative feedback will never outweigh the positive reviews resulting in a drop in a company's BBB rating.

IRA Fee Structure

It is not cheap to primary an IRA account as there will be fees for the services provided by the company to run and maintain your IRA for as long as you want them to. Likewise, the IRA company you deal with will have to earn from you with each transition you make. So, the IRA company you choose must be transparent and honest with its fees.

A good IRA company should honestly reveal their rates and if there are additional fees. They should make you understand what the prices will be for, and they should inform you how much it would cost you to maintain an IRA account.

Your chosen company should also use a fee structure to help you spread your expenses. Companies may offer promotions like no annual fees for the first years or give free precious metals when your account meets a specific criterion.

There will be companies that don't have a fixed rate and will charge you according to the number of precious metals you have stored in your IRA account. If you choose a company with this kind of policy, they should at least look for ways to help you save money, especially for the first few years.

Efficiency and Delivery Time

Another essential factor to consider when choosing a gold IRA company is how fast they deliver your orders. The best choice would be the company that can return your order within days to a maximum of one week with less downtime, and they ensure you will save time waiting for the order to be cleared.

In addition to efficiency and speed, the company's shipping method is another factor to consider. Choose a company that can offer several options for shipping your orders, like via an armored truck or designating a pick-up point at a secure place.

If you are out of the country and you want to invest in a gold IRA, make sure that you ask the company if they can ship precious metals to international territories. Take note that international shipments may be way more expensive than local transactions. But this would be convenient on your part if the company does have international transactions since you can receive your gold even if you are living overseas.

So, your focus on a company's efficiency is the speed of delivery with minimal issues and reliable and convenient shipment methods.

Pushy Salesmen or Unfriendly Customer Support

Have you been asking around, talking to different companies to ask for quotations, or simply making inquiries? You might have encountered some agents who come off as trying too hard to convince you to set up your IRA account or buy precious metals immediately.

When you encounter agents like these, likely, they do not get a regular salary. Instead, they earn a commission on every transaction they successfully close.

Remember, a company with a solid reputation will always force you to decide quickly. They will give you enough time to choose the best option. While doing so, they may educate you about this industry, hoping to help you decide what's best.

As early as now, observe how they handle clients. Since you are new to this, it is expected that you'll have a lot of questions. Are they accommodating? Do they listen to your concerns in a professional manner?

Being a new client, are they dismissive and rude? Do they make you feel comfortable as you feed your questions? Do they try to give you all the necessary information without getting irritated?

If you feel uncomfortable talking to an agent of a company, or if you feel intimidated or stressed out because of how their agents treat you, it may be best to cross that particular company from your list and move on to others.

Alternative Investment Options Available

It would help if you also considered the product listing of the IRA's most reliable gold ira company. They might have a lot of other offerings; best gold ira companies, noble gold investments, and silver investments, premier gold ira company, and silver bullion, coins, and other purchase precious metals, top gold ira companies, best gold ira investors also have account amount of investment. Find out their specialization in the additional purchase of precious metals.

Aside from product diversity, you should evaluate the quality of their products. In the case of other precious metals, purity ratings are crucial. You should choose a company that offers products with no less than a 98% purity rating. The IRS has set standards on the quality of products, and a company's products should be able to meet those standards, though some companies also carry non-IRS-approved precious metals of good quality.

One thing is clear, though: your chosen company should just be training genuine precious metals.

Another important consideration is the price listing. Reliable companies make it a point to constantly update their price listings according to the current trends in the market. They stay up to date with the latest news in the industry. Some companies regularly update their listings, so you don't have to call them to ask for their prices. Make sure to offer a variety of products.

You don't want to be forced to settle just because the company doesn't have diversity in its products.

Final Thought - Best Gold Investment Companies

Opening a gold IRA account is one of the most important financial decisions. By investing in gold, you are assured that your savings are safe and protected from bad economic slumps while allowing you to enjoy tax benefits.

If you want to maximize your gold IRA investment, choose a trustworthy gold IRA company. Several factors put a particular company at the top of the list. These include a wide selection of gold, fast and efficient delivery systems, reasonable fees, and consistently high ratings from customers and industry experts.

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A good company offers above-average customer service. The four gold IRA companies we have included in our list have all of the above characteristics and every company's features. The best company would be the one that can fulfill your needs.

Augusta Precious Metals is at the top of our list because we believe it offers a more comprehensive "package." They offer gold with the best possible quality and an excellent customer support system.

On the other hand, Goldco is the best option if you want a trustworthy company with a solid gold and silver selection. American Hartford Gold is your best option if you are more concerned about having 24/7 customer support. But if you are looking for a wide selection of palladium products and are known to have an efficient delivery service, choose Birch Gold.

When selecting a gold IRA company, research thoroughly and get as much information as possible on the different options before deciding.