Charlotte, North Carolina Self-Directed IRACharlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA

This beautiful and historic city is a popular retirement destination for Charlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA owners and others from all over the country. The combination of a rich cultural and historic heritage, an active arts, music and theater scene, easy access to some fantastic golf courses, and a relatively friendly tax and economic environment combine to make Charlotte one of America’s top retirement spots for Self Directed IRA investors.
As a testament to the diversity of the city, Charlotte, the birthplace of the Reverend Billy Graham, is considered the home of Southern Presbyterianism, and it also has the largest Jewish community in the Carolinas.


As the largest city in North Carolina, Charlotte recently became a much more attractive state for retirees and Charlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA owners. The State of North Carolina recently gave residents a tax break, lowering income taxes to a flat rate of 5.8 percent for 2014. State income taxes were lowered again to 5.75 percent in 2015. That’s a significant improvement for those earning over $60,000 per year, as the top rate of 7.75 percent vanishes, as does the 7 percent rate that applied to all earnings over $12,250 under the prior system. For some people, this equates to as much as a 30 percent tax break. If you are relying on income from traditional IRAs and other taxable sources, this is a major break.

Furthermore, the state also recently increased the standard deduction from $3,000 to $7,500 for singles and from $6,000 to $15,000 for couples. So North Carolina is a much friendlier state for retirees than it used be.

On top of that, Social Security income is exempt from state taxation in North Carolina. There is also no estate tax.

As for sales taxes, North Carolina currently assesses a rate of 4.75 percent. The City of Charlotte doesn’t have a sales tax, but Mecklenburg County does: 2.5 percent. So your total sales tax in Charlotte is 7.250 percent. In the recent 2014 election, county residents rejected a tax increase that would have increased teacher salaries. So there are signs of local resistance to higher taxes – even to fund normally sympathetic constituencies.


According to information from, the median sales price of Charlotte homes is $190,500 as of this writing – with significant skew from pricier areas, as the mean average listing price is $303,245. The priciest area is Myers Park with an average listing price of $938,001, and Ballantyne West with an average listing price of $518,856. However, you can find some much lower-priced homes around as well, including in Oakview Terrace and Washington Heights, both of which show listings in the $60-$75 thousand range as of this writing in early November, 2014.

The average price per square foot in Charlotte is $127.

For those who plant to rent, the average apartment rental within 10 miles of Charlotte is $982, according to One-bedrooms go for $815 per month and 2-bedrooms go for $1,086.

The priciest rental areas are Third Ward and Providence Crossing, both with average rents over $1,500. The cheapest areas to rent in are Davis Lake Eastfield and Highland Creek. The rent for 2-bedroom units has increased by 19 percent over the last year, while the 1-bedroom market has held steady at 1 percent – suggesting a bifurcation in the market for single-family residences (apartments and otherwise) vs. singles.

Wealth and Asset Protection

Some states allow individuals in bankruptcy to select whether they want to have the state or federal exemptions apply to them. However, North Carolina requires you to use their own state exemptions.

This is an important consideration for retirees because in the event they are sued in a court of law and found liable for damages, creditors are able to seize certain assets to satisfy the judgment – but other assets are exempt. Here are some of the most relevant assets that North Carolina laws protect against the claims of creditors:

  • $35,000 in home equity. But, if you are 65 or older and a spouse has died, you may be able to qualify for a higher exemption, depending on the form of title you own the house under. You can exempt a burial plot worth up to $35,000 in lieu of the homestead exemption.
  • A car valued up to $3,500, provided you didn’t buy it within 90 days of filing for bankruptcy.
  • Health aids, furnishings, books, animals, appliances, household items, crops, clothing and musical instruments up to $5,000 in value, plus an additional $1,000 per dependent (up to $4,000). This exemption only applies to items purchased at least 90 days before a bankruptcy filing.
  • Tools of a trade up to $2,000.
  • Up to $25,000 in Section 529 college savings plans.
  • Workers compensation and unemployment benefits are exempt.
  • Veterans benefits are exempt.
  • Self directed and conventional IRAs enjoy unlimited protection under state law, which makes North Carolina a particularly attractive place for those with large self directed retirement accounts to retire to.
  • Tax-exempt retirement and pension plans, such as 401(k)s, 403(b)s, SEPs, profit-sharing plans, money-purchase plans, defined benefit plans and SIMPLE IRAs are exempt.
  • Additionally, North Carolina grants a “wildcard” exemption of up to $5,000 of unused homestead or burial plot exemptions.

Charlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA

You might have heard of this phrase before, liked the idea, but never really took the time to look into it. But now part of you knows that it’s definitely the time. A Charlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA is truly one of the most important ways in which you can take control of your financial future, deciding where your retirement investments go and how your portfolio will look.

But what exactly does “Self-Direction” really mean, and what are your options should you choose to direct your own retirement account? In this section, we’ll take a closer look at what this phrase means, the various tools you have at your disposal, and break down these IRAs into their individual categories. Along the way, you’ll find that the same protections you have for traditional retirement financial protections are available even if you self-direct.

If you believe in taking control over your portfolio, now’s the time to start learning about what kind of retirement you can have:

Why a Charlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA?

Stocks. Mutual funds. CDs. Bonds.

For years, you’ve heard that these are the types of investment vehicles through which to secure your retirement. The stock market tends to appreciate over the long haul, after all, and bonds are conservative and low on risk. Mutual funds have popped up in recent decades as one of the most popular investment vehicles as well, closely monitoring certain aspects of the stock market.

What most people do not know is that these are not the only investment types available for retirement.

In fact, if you choose self-direction, you’ll find that the IRS allows for all sorts of different types of investments in a retirement account. You can invest in gold and precious metals, real estate, private companies, and more. There are a few select limits on the sorts of investments you can make, but the good news is: you often have more legal options than you have limits.

For many people, a Self Directed IRA means freedom, opportunity, and self-determination. It means not being satisfied that the “market” is the only market that exists. It doesn’t mean you have to switch away all of your old investments. But if you want to invest in real estate or gold to help ensure a secure retirement, those options are indeed open…

And, like other IRA types, Self Directed IRAs come with all sorts of investment protections.

Understand Your Charlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA Plan Options

Let’s take a moment to consider the various retirement account types:

  • Traditional IRA: A retirement account in which you can invest pre-tax or after-tax dollars, and in which your investments grow tax-deferred, meaning you will pay taxes on them once you begin withdrawing them. When you start making retirement withdrawals–defined as withdrawals after you turn 59.5 years old–the money is treated as income.
  • Roth IRA: Similar to a traditional IRA, except you make after-tax dollar contributions so you’re paying taxes on the front end. This allows your investments to grow tax-free. After the account has been established for 5 years and after you turn 59.5, your withdrawals are tax and penalty-free.
  • Traditional 401(k): A qualified plan that allows employees to make pre-tax elective deferrals. Business owners who want to self-direct can use these as well and allow employees to self-direct their accounts.
  • SEP-IRA: Simplified Employee Pension that allows employers to make contributions to the retirement of their employees. An employer can also contribute to their own retirement with a SEP-IRA.
  • SIMPLE: Savings Incentive Match Plan for Employees. A “tax-favored” plan that small businesses and individuals can set up for their employees.
  • Solo 401(k): A 401(k) plan that a self-employed individual can use for retirement that offers high contribution limits.

As noted throughout, these same accounts offer a high degree of self-direction if you want to direct your own accounts.

A Variety of Investments

One of the chief benefits of directing your own retirement account is that you get to choose your investments from a wide range of options:

  • Real estate: Apartment buildings, commercial property, retail space, raw land, etc. If you want to earn an immediate income for your retirement account with your investments, rent can be one of the most powerful ways to ensure that. You can also use leverage in a Real Estate IRA when using non-recourse loans.
  • Private IRA Lending: You can negotiate the terms, interest rate, and length of the loan, as well as other variables like the monthly payment amounts and whether the loan is secured or unsecured.
  • Private companies: Public stocks are what most people think of as “investments,” but there are also private stocks to consider. There is a lot of opportunity for growth in private company stock, but also plenty of risk to consider.
  • Tax liens: With a high rate of return, these investment types are ideal for self-directing investors with smaller accounts.
  • Precious metals: Gold, silver, platinum, palladium. These metals are famous as a “hedge” against economic downturn, which is why many people turn to them as a way to avoid putting all of their eggs in the stock market basket.
  • Single Member LLC: An investor can create an LLC to be owned by their IRA, managing it themselves. This gives a significant degree of protection, however you’ll likely want to consult with a professional to learn how to do this properly.

What You Can’t Do with a Charlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA

As fun as it is to talk about the various options you can have with a Self Directed retirement account, it should be noted that there are certain limits, as well. You cannot self-direct a retirement account to invest in life insurance, collectibles like art, gems/jewelry, coins, alcoholic beverages, and tangible personal property. As enticing as it might be to put that wine cellar under an IRA protection, it’s simply prohibited–so look for your protected retirement investments elsewhere.

Getting Started with American IRA

Although we’ve thrown a lot of abbreviations and words at you, you should know that self-directing your retirement isn’t as complicated as it might sound. The steps are very simple:

  • Open a Charlotte North Carolina Self Directed IRA with American IRA. Make sure to put thought into the type of account you’d like to open; review the options available to you and select the one that makes the most sense for your individual situation.
  • Fund your account. This is where the options can throw people off. Let’s take a look at them quickly:
    • Contribution: Simply putting money into the account throughout the year. This is what a lot of the funding will look like once the account is already opened.
    • Conversion: Withdrawing part or all of the cash/assets from a traditional IRA and putting them into a Roth IRA is called a conversion. Once the cash/assets are distributed, you have 60 days to put them in the Roth IRA account.
    • Rollover: A tax-free distribution of cash/assets from one account to be put in another retirement account. You are permitted one rollover per year.
    • Transfer: Transferring cash/assets directly from one retirement account to another retirement account. Because you do not take direct possession of the cash/assets, you are allowed unlimited transfers and there is no tax.
  • Select an investment. Where will you invest your retirement account? Do a lot of research to ensure that you’re comfortable knowing all of the tax rules and implications of choosing a new investment type.
  • Review instructions. Check out How it Works.
  • Provide payment authorization. Submit the proper forms for expenses pertaining to the asset owned through your IRA.
  • Submit deposit coupons. Deposit the income generated by your IRA asset by submitting these forms along with the funds.

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