‘Tis the Season

‘Tis the Season

            I’m writing this email shortly after a phone conversation with an investor named Dave from New Jersey. In our conversation, we discussed the processing time that occurs with many of the self-directed IRA custodians and administrators. In response to his comments, I reminded him of some important things:

  1. It’s the time of year when many people are trying to do last-minute deals which involve their self-directed IRAs.
  2. The business of the self-directed space continues to grow and expand, and that’s a great thing; however, the timeframe for companies to bring on and train staff does not happen as quickly as growth occurs.

            What can you do to help things go more smoothly if you are doing an end-of-the-year deal? First of all, you, the investor, need to plan in advance to give the custodian a minimum of seven business days to process the deal paperwork.

            Secondly, I suggest you check, double check and triple check the accuracy of all the forms and paperwork you are submitting to the custodian. Go over anything they have told you they want in any of their lists and prerequisites.

            My third suggestion is that you include a cover letter explaining to the custodian the transaction. Remember, this is a deal you have been working on for days, weeks or even months, so you know it intimately; but the employees of the custodian or administrator who are getting your paperwork via email or fax have no clue as to what you have agreed to other than what they can discern from the forms and documents you have sent them. Make sure it all makes sense to a third party who hasn’t been in on all your brainstorming sessions and negotiations.

            When it comes to making the process of self-directed investing easier and more successful at the end of the year, plan ahead, review for accuracy, and communicate clearly.