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Birch Gold Group gained notoriety because of endorsements from personalities like Steve Bannon. This well-known precious metals dealer has a solid track record with their customers. However, how does the company stack up to the competition, and what exactly do they offer?
The company's primary product offering is precious metals IRAs. Educational resources accompany any IRA accounts established through the company.
Before we get started, investing your savings is a serious task. When it comes to adding precious metals to your portfolio, how do you know which companies to trust?
That is why we have researched every company in the industry and selected the very few with the highest customer service standards.
This way you can easily compare the best companies in the business, and choose one that fits your needs and investment goals.
Read the list to see if Birch Gold Group passed our strict customer service standards to become one of our top recommendations.
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About Birch Gold Group
In 2003, a team of wealth managers founded Birch Gold Group in the United States. They have assisted customers with gold, silver, platinum, and palladium since then. If you want to visit them in person, you can visit their headquarters in Burbank, CA.
The Better Business Bureau gave the company an A+, and tons of endorsements have been given to them. Jordan Peterson, Ron Paul, Ben Carson, and Candace Owens are some of the names backing this brand. Conservative commentators across the board have endorsed the company thanks to their values.
Birch's mission is to educate customers on precious metals investing's unique benefits. The company will carefully guide you through the process and teach you. They provide a guide selection to help with scam identification and investment schemes. As their customers, the company wants to empower you and your future.
Birch's business model was built on the human being behind each client and not simply sales. Since they value each person, their processes are designed to emphasize it. When you establish an account at their company, they pair you with a specialist. This precious metals specialist will get to know you and your needs, goals, and wishes. If you have any questions that you want to ask, they can answer them quickly.
Your information is secure, and the company enforces data protection policies. Birch Gold Group understands trust is earned and not given, and they do what they can to show it. Trustpilot ranked them as excellent, and they are proud of their feedback. New investors can check out their resource compilation on financial scams.
The main thrust of Birch Gold Group's business model is based on precious metals IRAs. Anyone can open a self-directed IRA and invest in alternative assets, such as gold. However, doing the paperwork can be overwhelming to some, but that is not a problem here. Birch's precious metals IRA process can simplify the process.
Clients receive dedicated account representatives to walk them through the initial setup. These reps will hold your hand as you complete the paperwork, easing the ordeal. Then, you will work with them to connect with a custodian. After finding a custodian to oversee the account, your rep will help you with a purchase.
The fee structure on the website is clear, concise, and intelligible. To open an account, investors must fund them with a minimum of $10,000. If you make cash purchases outside of the IRA, you can use a lower minimum. The basic setup fee is $50, and it covers your account representative's time initially. A $30 bank wire transfer fee incurs each time you initiate a transaction.
Your annual maintenance and storage fees are paid to the custodian and depository. Even though these fees vary according to the business, most of them charge $100 a year for each. Therefore, you can expect to spend about $200 total on these services annually. Birch Gold Group covers the first year of fees for anyone who invests $50,000 or more. If you choose to work with Birch's preferred custodian, they charge a flat fee. Your costs will not vary as the size of your account increases over time.
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Creating an Account
If you want to invest with Birch, the first step is to open and fund an account. Incoming clients must bring at least $10,000 to invest with them. If you already have existing retirement accounts, the funds can be rolled over and used. There are not any penalties when you roll over funds from a qualifying account too.
After the account has been funded, you must choose a custodian and apply at their site. Birch's preferred custodial partners are Equity Trust Company and STRATA Trust Company. The BBB has given these companies an A+, so they are trustworthy institutions.
You can take your funded account and decide which metals to purchase now. Your account custodian will go over your financial goals and address your questions. Then, they will recommend particular products suited to your needs and desires.
Precious metals may not be placed in an IRA unless they comply with the IRS's strict regulations. If you wish to invest in precious coins, they must come from their list of approved ones. Fortunately, your account rep can help you navigate these ordinances with clarity. After you decide which metals to buy, you can finalize the transaction. The specialist will confirm the metal's price, and then you can sign the paperwork. Once they receive the transmitted payment, the metals are sent to your depository.
At the depository, your custodian will arrange the metal's vault placement. Over time, they will send account statements to you, keeping you up to date. These statements' details will include information about your account's current market value.
What Products Do They Offer
Australian 1/4 Ounce Gold Florin
This timeless mainstay from the British Empire has been issued for the first time since 1963. It comes from the Perth Mint in Australia, and it has a face value of $25. British florins circulated on six continents at one time in history, and now you can have one. On the front side of this coin, you can see an image of Queen Elizabeth II. She wears a diadem and Diamond Jubilee earrings in this instance. On the reverse, there is an exquisitely crafted picture of a kangaroo.
The American Gold Buffalo
This coin is America's first 24-karat bullion coin, and it is made with 0.9999 fine gold. Master sculptor James Earle Fraser originally concocted the five-cent coin in 1913. His image of the native American was taken and repurposed for this coin's obverse. This man's visage is a combination of three Indian chiefs: Big Tree, Iron Tail, and Two Moons. On the other side of this coin, a buffalo stands on the cragged ground. This coin entered production in 2005 after the Presidential $1 Coin Act was passed.
American Gold Eagle Coin
This iteration of the coin from the US mint first appeared in 1986, and it is a beautiful sight to behold. It is comprised of 91% gold, and it comes in several denominations. Artist Saint-Gaudens drew the awe-inspiring outline of lady liberty on the coin's front. Miley Busiek sculpted the impressive bald eagle family on the coin's reverse.
When Ronald Reagan signed the 1985 Gold Bullion Act, it made it so that these were made from American gold only. If you get one from the 35th anniversary, there is a single bald eagle on it instead of a family.
Canadian Gold Maple Leaf
Canada conceived the Gold Maple Lead in 1978 and produced the first in 1979. This coin is among the purest coins available worldwide, containing 99.99% pure gold. It does not contain any base metal, and the Royal Canadian Mint mints it. Walter Ott came up with the idea for this coin. Its first production run was from 1979 to 1982 and was available in a one-ounce format. Since it was such an incredible success, the Canadian Parliament authorized continual production.
Gold Bars and Rounds
Gold bars and rounds are usually nearer gold's melt value than other products. They are some of the simplest forms of metal you can own. Private mints strike them, and they do not serve as legal tender. Each option must contain at least 0.995 fine gold, or it would not be eligible for an IRA. You can typically check the issuing organization's name on the bar's face. Multiple sizes are available, ranging from 10 grams to one kilogram.
Physical Metal Purchases
Not everyone wants to store their precious metals in a vault far away. If you prefer taking possession of your precious metals physically, Birch can help. Plus, you can have complete control over the purchasing process. There are no reporting requirements if you order your metals this way, either.
The first step is to find the precious metals that you would like to buy. You can speak to one of the company's specialists, and they will show you some options. Typically, they want you to have a spending limit in mind.
After selecting the items you want to buy, you must transmit payment. Birch Gold allows shoppers to pay via wire transfer or a personal check. Wire transfers incur a $25 fee, and you have a minimum purchase value of $10,000.
Birch Gold Group will send the metals to your address after the payment receipt. When they pack up everything, they put the metals in discrete packaging. As a result, people will not be able to tell what you have purchased.
Is Birch Gold Group a Scam?
This company is not a scam; they have been in business for more than 20 years. The BBB has awarded Birch an A+ rating, and several celebrity endorsements back up the company. In addition, industry professionals and previous customers say many good things too.
On BBB's website, there are 72 customer reviews, and they average 4.72 out of 5 stars. Consequently, you can assume that most of the company's customers enjoyed them. You will notice a similar trend across the board if you check third-party review sites.
Of course, you would see several negative complaints from any company. However, you can see that Birch tries hard to resolve negative feedback and complaints.
A customer from November of 2022 left a glowing review about Birch. They had a great experience with the two specialists they were assigned. Additionally, the customer said they felt comfortable reaching out to them anytime. As a result, there were impressed by the company's customer service and support.
Another customer wrote a glowing review in October of 2022. They were happy to work with the knowledgeable, hard-working staff members. During the initial setup, they were guided through everything with ease. Then, an account specialist took over the process and guided them through the rest. The customer mentioned how nobody ever pressured them or made them feel hurried.
Birch Gold Group responded to a positive review left by a customer in the same month of 2022. The customer was pleased by the helpful workers, and they felt informed and grateful. Birch thanked them for their business and told them to reach out if they had any questions.
Over the past three years, Birch has closed ten complaints and three in the past 12 months. Most of the time, a company will have a handful of complaints, so that is not too many. If you look at what is bothering customers, it is their profit margin. One complaint from April of 2022 spoke about the large markups on some products.
This customer claims that gold bullion was sold at 10% above the spot price on the day they bought it. Furthermore, they said some products were listed at a 25% to 35% markup. However, the salesman they worked with did send them an itemized list for sale.
Birch Gold Group responded to the complaint and said it was very worrying. They justified their prices as part of their business model. Since the customer took a while to receive their products, Birch said it may have been a delay in shipping. Overall, they seemed conciliatory and ready to work out a deal with the customer.
Another customer reviewed their IRA negatively. According to the client, they invested a substantial amount in the IRA. Nevertheless, their account statement showed a much lower value when they received it. The customer thought they were overcharged for their purchases, incurring major losses.
The customer claimed that metal prices had risen since he initially bought them. Therefore, the discrepancy should not be as large. He called Birch to request a copy of his transaction receipt, but it took a while to get it to him. When he spoke to the representative, they said it was an issue with the spot price.
Birch Gold Group successfully contacted the client and resolved the issue. There was a problem with Equity Trust Company, not Birch Gold. Equity Trust's issued statements reflect account values with the metal's spot price. Yet, customers get a markup when they sell their metals, so this looked inaccurate.
Business Consumer Alliance
The BCA has given Birch Gold Group a AAA rating, and they have a perfect 5-star customer score. A AAA rating means that the BCA does not have anything on file to cause you to question its reliability. Over the past three years, they registered two complaints against the company. The total amount that was in dispute was $307,340.
One of the complaints was resolved with a complete refund of the initial purchase. The other complaint came to a resolution with an adjustment being made to the order. Both customers originally complained that they were misled into creating a coin-backed IRA. Fortunately, Birch Gold Group responded immediately, and they made things right.
Trustpilot gave Birch Gold Group a 4.9 out of 5 stars. This score was averaged across 125 reviews, and 95% of them were 5-star scores. Customers wrote that they appreciate the company's transparency, selection, and fees.
Anti-Money Laundering Compliance
Birch Gold is one of the world's leading suppliers of precious metals, and they respect the law to the utmost. Their legal department continually monitors the world and policy changes to ensure compliance. Congress passed the US Patriot Act in 2001, legislating money laundering activities.
This act required the company to develop policies and procedures to fight back. Birch also has to maintain a compliance officer on staff and perform audits. Each year, the company hosts an annual complaint training to fulfill these requirements.
A 30-year IRS veteran runs the training group, and it goes over things that happen. Employees learn how to pick up on money laundering efforts and how to stop them. Businesses that accept cash must have clearly outlined standard operating procedures.
For this reason, Birch has collected identification from all their clients. When someone conducts a transaction above $10,000, they utilize IRS Form 8300. Moreover, they consult with the government if they detect suspicious activity.
Birch Gold Group also conducts annual audits of its anti-money laundering processes. Since it must be independent, the audit is performed by someone outside the company.
The Bottom Line
Birch Gold Group has several things going for it, and it outperforms many competitors. First, they provide a well-thought-out system for IRA accounts.
You can rely on the account specialists they provide, and the process is easy. Plus, the company has great reviews from most major publications, like the BCA and BBB.
Finally, they have a wide variety of gold, silver, platinum, and palladium products.
Remember to read our list of the Top Gold Companies to see if Birch Gold Group made the cut.
Or, if you like what you read about Birch Gold Group, you can visit their website below.