It’s a little-known fact that tax liens can be purchased with retirement account funds. By self-directing your IRA investments into tax liens, your profits are tax-deferred back into your retirement account. And if you hold a checkbook tied to your “self-directed IRA,” the purchases can be made on the spot. Tax liens are already an underappreciated money-making gem, but they can shine even brighter if acquired through an IRA.

Tax Liens and IRAs: The Perfect Combination

Go to almost any website that discusses tax liens, and you will invariably come across expressions such as “undiscovered gem” and “amazing returns.” Despite their less than glamorous name, tax liens deserve your attention because they are, indeed, full of potential profit.

Under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), IRA holders can “self-direct” their account investments into everything from traditional stocks and bonds to more unconventional investments like real estate, hard-money loans, overseas rental properties and tax liens. Liens are surprisingly safe investments and ideal for those with limited funds. Transactions are quick, which makes tax liens perfect investments for those holding self-directed IRAs with checkbook control who can purchase liens the moment that they become available.

These unique self-directed IRAs can be created by a handful of institutions skilled in these specialized account structures. Many offer free advice on how to utilize such accounts to purchase tax liens. Guidant Financial Group of Bellevue, Wash., one of the industry leaders, offers free phone consultations, and extensive educational materials are available in the education center.

Avid investor Michael Hepps of Cherry Hills, N.J. recently hired Guidant to structure a self-directed IRA because of the tax advantages it provided. “I’ve been investing in tax liens for a while now, and I’ve been very happy with my returns,” he says. “I started a self-directed IRA account primarily because the profits on my tax lien investments will now be [tax-deferred].”

Tax-lien IRA investments and self-directed IRAs are a winning combination. Take the time to study and explore this excellent means for growing wealth.

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