Getting the most out of your IRA plan can be a tough deal indeed. After all, there are so many plans out there and all of them seem to have rapidly approaching deadlines for their account contributions. Here are 4 quick tips for choosing the best IRA service provider in order to make sure that your retirement is in safe hands.
1. Know the costs
Some firms are all about the money. They might even charge you a fee for opening an account with them. This might not be a huge amount, but it could be based on your balance in the account. The size of your account usually determines the value of the fees associated with it. You need to be able to recognize which firm will charge you for the sake of the money and which will actually provide good service for it.
You also need to understand how much it will cost you to perform transactions with the firm. There may be trading fees involved for buying stock or managing exchange-traded funds and investment vehicles. Some mutual funds carry transaction fees as well. If your financial advisor works according to a commission, try to gain an understanding of how they are compensated.
2. Are they the right fit for you?
The fees talked about above, such as sales fees, are all a part of the answer to this question. Look beyond the face costs that you see and understand how and why you invest in the things that you do. Then find out if your custodian has the same mindset as you do. For example, if you are planning on using the mutual fund at a bank, it might make sense to keep your precious metal IRA accounts there too.
You also need to think about other types of accounts and services that the custodian offers, and whether or not you need them. If you think they do, then move your accounts to this custodian in order to increase the buying power that you get when your accounts are with them.
3. Is an IRA a good fit for your retirement plan?
The IRA is one of the best tools in your strategies for planning for your retirement. If you have access to a 401k or some other workplace retirement plan with your employer, it is recommended that you contribute enough to capture any employer match offered. This is a good idea even if your 401k is absolutely terrible (as they usually tend to be).
4. Make your IRA part of the family
Make sure that your IRA is treated as a part of your personal investment portfolio. This means that you should pay close attention to whom you open the account with and whom you choose to keep it running at the top of its form. You need to make sure that your IRA is managed well, because it is a big part of your investment and financial planning strategy for the future.
Starting early is always a good idea, but make sure you get it right so that you don’t lose the advantage of beginning when you’re young.
This article is a paid placement, commisioned by Lear Capital.