Getting Rich and Staying Rich are Two Different Things – How a Self-Directed IRA Can Help

Most of our clients – people who are sophisticated enough to be attracted to a Self-Directed IRA and other retirement accounts – have heard multiple riches-to-rags stories: People who excelled at one endeavor, whether in business, sports, entertainment, or anything else, and then lost their fortunes as they entered retirement, or when work became scarcer, because they lost their main source of income or their main source of income that initially fueled their success became irrelevant.

The problem is particularly acute with pro athletes, who can make a substantial amount of money in a relatively few years – and then are forced into retirement when their bodies can’t take the punishment of pro sports anymore. But they are still relatively young and inexperienced in other areas. The great Sandy Koufax, for example – a Hall of Fame pitcher and arguably the greatest left-hander who ever threw a baseball when he was in his prime – had to retire at age 31. Pro ball players who make it into their late 30s or early 40s are the exception rather than the rule. Many of these players wind up struggling just a few years after they leave the pro ranks because of poor financial and investment decisions. Musicians and actors and actresses are frequently in the same boat.

We also see the same issues come up with successful business people who sell their businesses: If your expertise is in owning transmission shops, buying and selling real estate or farming or anything else, can you really expect to keep the same level of success going forward after leaving those endeavors, retiring, and essentially becoming a stock-picker or mutual fund picker?

Usually not. Even the professional mutual fund experts have an extremely tough time consistently beating the markets after expenses are taken into account. And non-experts who try to do it themselves fare even worse.

That’s where the Self-Directed IRA comes in.

The Self-Directed IRA lets successful people continue their successes in whatever business fields they were successful in prior to retirement. Are you a real estate expert? You can own real estate within your Self-Directed IRA account. Are you a precious metals whiz? You can own precious metals with a Self-Directed IRA, as well. Is your expertise in farming? Ranching? Racehorse breeding? Fixing and flipping houses? Running your own small business in a C corporation, partnership or LLC? You can do all the above using the powerful, flexible Self-Directed IRA. Want to invest offshore? You can do that, too.

In fact, you can do almost anything within a Self-Directed IRA than you can do in a personal account, except for life insurance, gems, jewelry, collectibles and artwork, alcoholic beverages, or buy, sell, lend or borrow to or from yourself, your descendants, ascendants or any entities they may control.

Which is common sense, really, when you think about it. Congress has granted powerful favorable tax treatment to these retirement accounts to help you secure a secure retirement income for yourself and your family. Not to engage in self-dealing.

Meanwhile, the Self-Directed IRA lets you leverage the benefit of tax deferral (or, in the case of Roth Self-Directed IRAs, tax-free growth) not just in mutual funds, CDs, publicly-traded stocks and bonds, like you see in most off-the-shelf retirement plans you get from a run-of-the-mill investment company, but in the very fields you are most knowledgeable about, and the very fields in which you have the most experience and the greatest competitive advantages in.

If you are an expert in any particular field of investment or business or industry, and you want to continue to engage in these interests within your IRA, either prior to or after your retirement, we at American IRA, LLC would like to hear from you.

Our North Carolina-based firm is among America’s leading experts in administering Self-Directed IRA accounts for successful and experienced people just like you.  Visit our extensive informational library on Self-Directed IRAs and related concepts at or call us at 866-7500-IRA.

We look forward to working with you.

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