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Gold IRA Scams: What To Look Out For

The gold market has risen exponentially for decades. With this growth, however, comes the opportunity for scammers.
IRA Scam

IRA Scam

The gold market has risen exponentially for decades. With this growth, however, comes the opportunity for scammers. There are many gold IRA scams these days, and it is essential to spot them before you become a victim.

Worry less because this article will help you learn what gold IRA scams are and how to avoid them. We’ve listed the top Gold IRA Companies you could trust below:

Top 5 Gold IRA Companies of 2023 At A Glance


Being smart about which companies you work with is necessary because it is easy to get tricked by fraudulent companies in today’s gold market. With all of the scams out there, it is challenging to choose which precious metals dealers are legit and which are not. 

Here are some of our top preferences for legitimate gold IRA companies:

#1 Augusta Precious Metals: Editor’s Choice Best Gold IRA Company Overall

Most investors choose Augusta Precious Metals because its reputation has no blemish in the precious metals markets. They have been in the precious metals market for over 45 years furnishing various investment assets, including self-directed gold IRAs.

Aside from that, their clients can enjoy one-on-one web conferences to enhance their familiarity with precious metal investments.


  • With conferences led by Harvard economists

  • Has no complaints from BBB or BCA since its operation

  • Offers lifetime investment assistance

  • Has numerous 5-star ratings


  • Pricey investment

  • Has no bullion selection

>>> Click Here For Free Gold Kit <<<

#2 Goldco: Runner up – Best Customer Service and Pricing

Goldco representatives are hands-on with all clients’ queries. Beginners and seasoned precious metals IRA investors will not get intimidated by Goldco’s website interface because it is straightforward to navigate.

Also, Goldco puts all the precious metals their clients have purchased in a certified IRS establishment. Once you retire, you may decide whether to receive your returns in cash or gold.


  • Provides clients with investment materials

  • Has high buyback program guarantees

  • With superb services and products

  • Operates with well-trained financial consultants


  • Costly investment

  • Has no palladium or platinum commodities

>>> Click Here For Free Gold Kit <<<

#3 American Hartford Gold: Great Price

American Hartford Gold (AHG) clients may acquire quality silver and gold coins and bars sold at a highly competitive price with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. They also have quality customer assistance with online chat options, providing convenience for clients.

The team handling their investor education program are industry professionals with years of background in the precious metals investment market. Rest assured that you can trust this precious metals dealer with your investments.


  • 24/7 customer assistance

  • Has a buyback option with no liquidation fees

  • Affordable minimum deposit

  • Has A+ rating from BBB


  • Sluggish transaction clearance

  • No abroad delivery option

>>> Click Here For Free Gold Kit <<<

#4 Birch Gold: Top Choice For Beginners

Birch Gold has already worked with around 13,000 customers and built an outstanding image. This monster of an enterprise has garnered an A+ rating from reputable sites like Better Business Bureau. 

They have a great staff of passionate financial advisors, wealth managers, and commodity brokers who can secure all your precious metals investments.


  • Affordable base investment

  • Has palladium options

  • Free delivery options for 10,00 USD worth of items

  • Has superior staff


  • No overseas depository choices

  • Not straightforward with fees

>>> Click Here For Free Gold Kit <<<


#5 Noble Gold Investments: Best customer support

Noble Gold’s founders The company’s founders have more than two decades of combined expertise in dealing with precious metals assets. They have already secured over a billion dollars for their loyal customers.

Moreover, Noble Gold Investments take security and safety to the highest level. They offer their clients a photography copy as proof of their orders in the depository. What makes it more interesting is that it is free of charge.

On top of that, they also help customers with their investment education. They deliver an in-depth understanding and awareness of how to appraise their investment values. After all, the company’s primary vision is to guarantee clients’ wealth protection.


  • Works with trusted financial advisors

  • With up-front IRA fees

  • Setting up an account can take five minutes only

  • Easy buyback program

  • Wide variety of precious metals product offerings


  • Does not offer international storage

  • Pensions are not eligible for IRA rollover


>>> Click Here For Free Gold Kit <<<

What Are Gold IRA Scams?

Gold is a valuable asset, but it is also an extremely sought-after investment. Gold is a highly liquid asset that you can trade anytime without fees or restrictions. It also does not fluctuate as much as the economy or the stock market.

You can purchase physical gold if you already have a traditional individual retirement account (IRA). But remember that there are numerous risks involved with this investment — there are a lot of shady gold IRA companies out there that will try to scam you.

Before making any gold investments, do your research and assess the various types of investments available and suitable for you. This is an excellent first step on how you can avoid getting scammed by a scam artist.

Well-Known Gold Scams

Gold IRA scams have been around for quite a while now, but they are still thriving. This is because people are still getting victimized by them. Here are some familiar precious metals investment scams and how to spot them:

Gold Rush Fraud

This gold IRA scam preys on the greed of individuals who want to get rich instantly. It is a fraudulent activity that often targets people looking to buy and sell pieces of jewelry. The first report happened in South Africa last 2012.

The scam works like this: someone will offer you a deal that seems too pleasing to be authentic. Gold rush fraud happens when someone offers to purchase your gold jewelry in cash. The fake buyer will send you a check higher than the price of the gold jewelry.

Further, they will ask you to deposit the money into your account and wire back the change. But what happens here is the check they gave you will bounce, leaving you liable for that lost fund.

Overpayment Scams

This next gold IRA scam follows the idea that someone will get in touch with you online or through phone, swearing to be interested in buying something from your eBay store or any online auction site.

The scam artist will offer to pay higher than what you are proposing and ask that you can send them the difference or change via wire transfer services. Some scammers often instruct their prey to use prepaid debit cards.

Non-Delivery Scams/Ponzi Schemes

A non-delivery scam is a fraudulent activity where scammers promise to pay you back for a specific investment, but they never deliver it. Instead, they will keep paying older investors with the funds they get from newer investors. They do not get their profits from legitimate financial trading or business activities.

A Ponzi scheme or a non-delivery scam is also tough to spot because they do not show the typical signs. You can only spot them by asking questions about the business starting its registration or if there are any complaints. 

‘Rare Coin’ Valuation Scams

Inexperienced and naive coin collectors should be wary of “rare coin” valuation scams. Scammers will ring you and inform you that they have rare collectible coins worth thousands of dollars, and they want to sell them to you. 

These rare coin scammers will send you an email regarding a fantastic find and will ask you if you would want to purchase it from them. If you agree, they will send some images of the rare coins and ask for your fee via MoneyGram or Western Union wire transfer.

What’s unfortunate here is that once you send the money thru MoneyGram or Western Union, it will be impossible for you to get them back. If anyone tries to sell you a valuable commodity, like rare coins, at a lower cost and asks for payment via wire transfer, there is a high chance that they are running a scam.

The Home Storage Gold IRA Scam

The idea for this scheme is that someone will provide you with a tempting pitch to make you purchase gold stored in their individual retirement accounts (IRAs).

The pitch revolves around diversifying your IRA investments for more protection in case of hyperinflation or a stock market crash — and buying gold and storing them in an IRA account is a perfect way to do it.

The only concern is that you have no reason to trust your retirement savings on someone else’s precious metals storage unit. If you do trust them, which you should not in the first place, there are numerous ways to safely diversify your portfolio without spending too much on storage or commission fees.

Gold IRA Scams Affiliate Scams

You can quickly get involved with this scheme if you have a web page and basic affiliate marketing skills. Currently, hundreds of thousands of individuals are running gold IRA affiliate scams.

These scammers use specific software that permits them to create bogus websites. These web pages link back to the scammer’s main website, where they trade their services and products. The funny thing is that these fake sellers do not realize that most of their websites do not work correctly.

Gold IRA Scams Counterfeiting

Another common scam in the gold IRA industry is counterfeiting. With the rising demand for gold and other precious metals assets, many investors are getting fooled into purchasing fake products.

Chances are those fake coins and bars are from real gold. However, they may be less than what the scammers advertise. This can result in a massive investment loss for gold investors who bought duped precious metals.

To ensure purchasing authentic gold and silver precious metal investments, check out online auction sites before buying them from unknown sellers. This can help you distinguish the fake from the real ones.

Gold IRA Scam Warning Signs

It is common in the retirement planning industry for individuals to get scammed. These infamous individuals prey on investors looking for instant investment appreciation. They take advantage of those with little to no familiarity with retirement planning processes.

The most excellent way to dodge a scammer is to know what and where to look for them. Here are some of the signals that you may be at risk for an IRA scheme:

  • The said organization has no phone number or website. If you are looking for their online presence or in any directory lists, it is likely because they hide their information or do not exist.

  • Always collaborate with your local registries. You may contact them to check whether you work with legitimate people and if their businesses have permits.

  • Suppose they insist on paying them instantly. This is a common technique used by fraudulent individuals because it provides them access to your money while discouraging you from getting your funds back in case something goes wrong with their deliveries.

  • They do not have any marketing materials. Further, they have no phone number listed on their web page, or they do not have a physical address.

The Anatomy of Gold IRA Scams

Remember that precious metals individual retirement accounts (IRAs) are self-directed accounts. This means you can not depend on a custodian with no license to evaluate your gold and silver assets.

You must find a trustworthy gold dealer with a long list of positive customer reviews from verified and reputable review sites, such as Business Consumer Alliance, TrustLink, and other third-party web pages.

The following section includes the red flags for investing gold, silver, and other precious metals in individual retirement accounts (IRAs).

Pushy Salespeople

Be cautious and keep an eye on glib salespeople who assure you that gold prices will only rise and urge you to buy as soon as possible or miss out on a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Pushy sales associates are irritating and uncomfortable to engage with. If a company representative persuades you more than usual, it may imply that they do not care about the client but are interested in how they can trick you.

Phony IRAs

Some schemers sell phony gold IRAs. They will persuade you to transfer your funds and steal them. Before you discover that there are no gold assets and that you have just transacted to a fake seller, they have already moved to another state — looking for other vulnerable investors to scam again.

Nonexistent Purchases

You must ensure that your custodian purchases gold, silver, and other precious metals and stores them at an honorable depository. Your custodian must provide you with certification or proof that you indeed bought physical rare metal assets and that they are all inside an insured warehouse.

If you have talked with an agent with personal storage, you should step back first. This is because the IRS has not officially endorsed this practice, so it is better to seek advice from a well-informed lawyer before choosing this path.

Selling Collectable Coins

The IRS permits you to purchase golf and other precious metal assets as a commodity or investment, not as a collectible. Never fall for sale pitches that convince you to buy their “rare bullion/coins” for your gold IRAs. This is a red flag because gold IRA companies strictly do not include collectibles in their accounts. 

Moreover, unless you are an expert, there is a possibility that these fake sellers will overcharge you for their rare products. Note that legitimate rare coin traders will not encourage you to enter this market without thoroughly educating yourself.

Shaved Coins

Scammer gold dealers scrape off a few grains of gold on the coins they sell. This only benefits the dealers and not you. The best way to dodge getting shaved gold and silver coins is to focus on partnering with well-vetted and respected precious metals retailers.

Misleading Contracts

Reading contracts has got to be one of the most boring things to do. However, reading and understanding all the fine print before signing any agreement is crucial. Unless you are dealing with a well-known company, you must double your level of consciousness.

If you are not confident signing documents, seek assistance from a qualified attorney to ensure and authenticate if the documents are legitimate. Such a practice will save you time and possible loss of money.

Unsolicited Offers

If a sales agent rings you out of the blue, convincing you to invest in gold IRAs, they are most likely a scammer. A respected and legitimate gold retailer will respond to your queries, not try to take advantage of total strangers.

Find Trustworthy Gold IRA Firms

The safest way to dodge a possible gold IRA scam is to transact with only reputable precious metals IRA firms. Here are the factors you should check out first:

  • Credibility – Ensure that they have an online presence so you can check reviews from reputable reviewers.

  • Experience – The longer they are in the industry, the more experience they have, meaning there is a higher chance they have a strong reputation to uphold.

  • Custodian – Look for a company with a custodian with lawful administrative and investment duties following IRS regulations.

Final Thoughts – Gold IRA Scams

Investors must empower themselves with credible information to quickly detect a gold scam because gold IRA scams usually happen to investors with insufficient knowledge of how precious metals IRA works.

>>> Click Here For Free Gold Kit <<<

A reputable IRA company, such as Augusta Precious Metals, guides you through an orientation to ensure you know where you are putting your hard-earned money!

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