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  • Writer's pictureRandal McLeaird

Invest in Real Estate and Beyond: How a Self-Directed IRA Can Enhance Your Retirement Portfolio

Have you ever wondered how you can roll you 401k into a self-directed IRA?

A 401k is a type of retirement savings account that is sponsored by an employer. It allows employees to contribute a portion of their paycheck on a pre-tax basis, and in some cases, the employer may also make contributions. The money in a 401k is typically invested in a selection of mutual funds or other investment vehicles, and the account is intended to provide funds for retirement.

On the other hand, a self-directed Individual Retirement Account (IRA) is a type of retirement account that gives the account holder more control over their investment choices. With a self-directed IRA, the account holder can choose to invest in a wider range of assets, such as real estate, private businesses, and precious metals, in addition to traditional investments like stocks and mutual funds.

There are a few different options for transferring money from a 401k to a self-directed IRA. One option is to do a direct rollover, which involves transferring the funds directly from the 401k to the self-directed IRA. This can be done by contacting the 401k plan administrator and requesting a rollover. The funds will be transferred directly to the self-directed IRA, and no taxes will be withheld.

Another option is to do an indirect rollover, which involves taking a distribution from the 401k and then depositing the funds into the self-directed IRA within 60 days. It is important to note that if you choose this option, you will be required to pay income tax on the distribution, unless you meet certain criteria for tax-free rollovers.

It is also possible to transfer money from a 401k to a self-directed IRA by doing a trustee-to-trustee transfer. This involves requesting that the administrator of the 401k transfer the funds directly to the self-directed IRA. This option has the advantage of avoiding any potential tax issues, as the funds are transferred directly between the two accounts.

Before transferring money from a 401k to a self-directed IRA, it is important to consider a few things. First, you should make sure that the self-directed IRA is set up and ready to receive the funds. This involves opening the account and selecting a custodian or trustee to hold the assets on your behalf.

It is also important to consider the potential fees and taxes associated with the transfer. Some 401k plans may charge a fee for distributing the funds, and you may also be subject to taxes if you choose to do an indirect rollover. It is a good idea to consult with a financial advisor or tax professional to determine the best course of action for your situation.

In addition, you should be aware of the rules and regulations that apply to self-directed IRAs. These accounts have certain restrictions on the types of investments that can be made, and it is important to understand these rules to avoid any potential issues.

Overall, transferring money from a 401k to a self-directed IRA can be a good way to gain more control over your retirement investments and potentially diversify your portfolio. However, it is important to carefully consider the options and understand the potential implications of the transfer before making a decision.


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About the Author

Randal is the founder of Ridgeline Investment Group, a real estate investment firm specialized in acquiring and operating multifamily assets. At Ridgeline Investment Group, Randal helps investors grow their

wealth and achieve double-digit returns by investing alongside him in exclusive multifamily deals they usually don't have access to.

Randal is the host of Agents Building Cashflow, a podcast focused on helping real estate professionals grow their passive income through alternative investments such as syndications and funds targeting multifamily assets.

He started his career as a single family real estate investor where he flipped over 500 properties. He’s been a licensed real estate Broker for 10+ years and has recently been featured in Forbes. He’s a member of the Urban Land Institute where he sits on the ULI Next and ULI Neighborhood Development committees. He’s committed to entrepreneurship and works with local business owners as a volunteer mentor with SCORE. Randal is an experienced entrepreneur who has helped build and scale multiple companies.

Randal holds a BA in Political Economy from Tulane University in New Orleans.

You can read more about Ridgeline Investment Group at and you can connect with Randal on LinkedIn here.

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