You’re a successful businessperson, and you know what it takes to make money grow. So you may dislike how most run-of-the-mill IRA and 401(k) plans force you to pick from a short list of investment options.
Why would you let someone else—or a computer—manage your money, when you’re the one who built it up in the first place?
Well, you asked, and the tax code answered. The law allows you to open a “self-directed” IRA, which frees you to do much more than you could with a traditional retirement account, such as investing in rental properties or buying a local business.
When you do this correctly, your self-directed IRA qualifies for the same tax-free buildup and deferral that your average Joe gets for his 401(k) mutual funds. The difference is that your tax-free buildup and deferral come from a business or rental property.
However, the “freedom” to self-direct under the law comes with some strict rules that your IRA custodian might not tell you about—but that could generate some painful and unexpected taxes. If you decide to self-direct, it’s critical to ... Log in to view full article.