What to consider with Self-Directed Retirement

Sep 12, 2018

Is your goal to enhance and improve the overall performance of your retirement? Do you often wonder how you can access additional capital for investments? A self-directed retirement account may provide you with added benefits to take your financial goals to the next level.

What most individuals do not know about their retirement accounts is that they can make investments outside of the publicly traded stock market to diversify their accounts. This means your clients can invest in real estate, promissory notes, private stocks, and more with your assistance. The types of qualified accounts available to you includes, but is not limited to:

  • Traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA)
  • Roth Individual Retirement Account (Roth IRA)
  • Solo 401(k) Plans
  • Qualified Retirement Plan Custodial Accounts

A retirement account is designed to offer individuals added tax benefits on top of their regular retirement plans. Those tax advantages come with a set of regulations that need to be obeyed. One such regulation example, is a requirement for a custodian (since you may not manage your retirement funds, personally).


Publication 560
Retirement Plans for Small Businesses

Publication 590A
Contributions to Individual Retirement Arrangements

Publication 590B
Distributions from Individual Retirement Arrangements


Our Self-Directed IRA allows you to invest in what you want, when you want. The investment possibilities are endless.

Discover the power of true self-directed investing

Our Self-Directed IRA allows you to invest in what you want, when you want. The investment possibilities are endless.

Custodians like Provident Trust Group, act as a passive custodian. Meaning, we do not give investment or legal advice. We assist in the process of purchasing assets for retirement account holders. In addition, we provide record-keeping and reporting to the IRS, as required by law.

Now you know a bit about custodians and their role. One question that should be asked is, do all custodians provide the same level of service to their clients? Absolutely not. When exploring your custodian options in the self-directed world, it is important to consider the following:

Types of Custodians

Self-Directed vs. Non-Self-Directed

Not all custodians are created equal. Most Non-Self-Directed IRAs only allow you to invest in traditional assets such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds and CDs. A Self-Directed IRA provides you with access to unlimited investment options. These include, but are not limited to: real estate, promissory notes, and private stocks and bonds.

Customer Experience

VIP Treatment

Your custodian should share your passion for success. This means making every effort to assist you in knowing what’s available, helping to navigate the investment process, as well as answering any question you may have in a timely manner.

Accurate and Fast Processing

Timeliness is paramount when investing. As such, your custodian must be fast, reliable, and should always put quality first by aiming to get things done right, the first time.



In a world booming with technological advances, it is important to find a custodian that will take the manual burdens out of your processes and continue to improve. This includes account opening, initiating investments, document management, lists of holdings, transaction history, account balances, and more, all in real time.


The IRA realm can be perplexing with fast pace changes that are affected by many elements. Your custodian should provide you with education, updates, news, and other important information needed to be successful throughout your retirement journey.

Fee Structure

Flat Rate Fee vs. Structured Fee

While exploring potential custodians, you will encounter numerous differences in fee schedules. There is no right or wrong option, just one that fits you best. With Flat Rate Fees there is one set price that does not go up or down depending on the value of the account. You can have $500 or $500,000,000 in your account, the price will not change. With Structured Fees, the price depends on the value of the account. The higher the value, the more expensive the account is.

While searching for the best custodian for your needs, we hope you consider Provident Trust Group, an Ascensus company. As a leading self-directed account custodian that offers clients the opportunity to invest in alternative assets, we raise the standard for our industry and trump the competition. Along with many other accolades, we have been voted “America’s Best IRA Custodian” and “America’s Most Advisor-Friendly Trust Companies” for 4 years running. With our flat rate fee, you won’t be penalized for growing your retirement and will always know what to expect—no surprise fees. We pride ourselves in delivering transparency with our technological advances and a superior customer experience to help you be successful throughout your retirement journey.

Please Note: Provident Trust Group and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.

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