Self-Directed IRA & 401K Basics

401(k) Loans and Prohibited Transactions

Self-directed IRA and Solo 401(k) plans (also known as Uni-K, self-directed 401(k), self-administered 401(k) and individual 401(k) plans) have strict rules imposed upon the plans to not engage in IRS and DOL Prohibited Transactions.  These rules are specific in their intent and there are significant penalties associated with a plan participating in self-dealing and other types of specifically prohibited transactions. However, through…read more →

Self-Directing Your IRA — How Long Will it Take?

Realistically, how long does it take? You have made the phone calls and done your research.  You may have also spoken to some self-directed companies who give the impression or outright tell you that your account can be established and funded in a matter of days.  Is this realistic? Before you answer …think about some aspects of establishing a self-directed…read more →

Receive Tax Credits for Self-Directing IRA or 401(k) Plans?

I always advise clients there are many benefits to establishing a self-directed IRA or 401(k).    It runs the gamut of  “checkbook control”, freedom, flexibility…certainly an exciting endeavor.  But, receive tax credits for self-directing IRA or 401(k) plans?  Yes! An almost immediate benefit to receive tax credits for self-directing IRA or 401(k) plans…by merely establishing a SEP-IRA, SIMPLE IRA (not Traditional IRA, Roth…read more →

401(k) Contribution Limits

401(k) Contribution Limits

Self-directed 401(k) contribution limits are the same as any other 401(k) plan.  As you continue through your fiscal year, keep in mind the high 401(k) contribution limits that are available to you and your plan, and plan accordingly.  Also, be cognizant of the fact that employee elective deferrals must be made by December 31 of the year in which the…read more →

401(k) Loans

Ah, the double-edged sword of 401(k) loans.  Most of us love them…even if it is only for the freedom we feel that they are available to us.  However, the double-edge of 401(k) loans is that while we have the freedom to take out the 401(k) loans, there is also the responsibility to repay the loan based on the requirements outlined…read more →

Operation of a Self-Directed 401K

The operation of a self-directed 401K is much more than just opening an account for the plan.  Unfortunately, that is how many people perceive it as the individual 401K plan has much less reporting requirements than its cousin, the multi-participant 401K plan.  While certainly not faced with the same type of reporting requirements, the operation of a self-directed 401K plan…read more →

Operating Agreement for Self-Directed IRA LLCs

I occasionally receive a question from a client on why is an operating agreement for self-directed IRA LLCs important. The genesis of the question usually rotates around when an IRA account owner is establishing the bank account for their IRA LLC, the bank will require that the individual provide the Federal TIN (Taxpayer Identification Number) and the approved articles for the…read more →

Real Estate Agents Investing With Self-Directed IRAs

Real estate agents investing with self-directed IRAs can make some mistakes with how they execute their self-directed investments.  I wanted to write this post after a recent seminar with real estate agents, which included real estate agents investing with self-directed IRAs.  The meeting was to introduce the benefits associated with real estate agents not only establishing their own self-directed retirement plan,…read more →

Self-Administered 401(k)

The majority of references on websites (including this one) that refers to one’s ability to take investment control of their 401(k) plans refers to such plans as a self-directed 401(k).  This is certainly a common norm in the industry; however, is this term the most aptly suited for this self-directed arrangement?  Probably not.  Other than using this term for marketing purposes,…read more →

IRA LLC Valuations

Recently, I wrote a post related to IRA LLC valuations and the new requirements that custodians must follow effective in 2015.  These new IRA LLC valuations will place greater responsibility on the IRA custodian for a more accurate reporting of “hard to value assets.”  While the final requirements have not been communicated to custodians, there will be change to an account manager…read more →