THE KINGDOM TRUST CO. Self-Directed IRA. Achieving Investment Diversity. TIM KUHMAN General Counsel, Kingdom Trust

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1 THE KINGDOM TRUST CO. Self-Directed IRA Achieving Investment Diversity TIM KUHMAN General Counsel, Kingdom Trust

2 1 Dear Retirement Investors: Thank you for accepting our offer of this free ebook. By accepting you have demonstrated that you understand the importance of truly diversifying your retirement portfolio. You are not satisfied with the menu of stocks, bonds and mutual funds offered by traditional retirement account sponsors. You wish to look beyond those traditional assets and balance your portfolio with non-traditional assets such as real estate, private equities, precious metals and promissory notes. This ebook will provide you with a brief history of the Individual Retirement Account, the types of accounts typically available to you and the types of investments you may purchase in those accounts. Enjoy the presentation. Should you have questions, feel free to contact us for further information. We can be reached at We re always happy to answer your questions.

3 2 table of contents Introduction Self-directed Investing Real Estate Private Equities Precious Metals Promissory Notes There are a Few Rules. History of the Individual Retirement Account Things You Probably Never Thought About

4 3 introduction Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the world of self-directed retirement investing. Many of you have probably heard of self-directed investing, your employer, banker, broker, mutual fund company or financial advisor probably told you about it. They most likely provided you with a list of high, medium and low risk stocks, bonds and mutual funds and told you that you can pick any of them from the list. That s their version of self-directed. It s not ours. Maybe it s not yours either; and it shouldn t be. Our version of self-directed retirement investing does include stocks, bonds and mutual funds but it also includes much, much more. Maybe you ve heard about this and maybe you haven t. But the fact that you accepted the offer of this ebook suggests that you d like to learn more about our version of self-directed investing for your retirement portfolio. So sit back, put your feet up and read on.

5 4 self-directed investing What is self-directed investing and what is a self-directed IRA? Self-directed investing is investing in which the investor finds his or her investments, does the due diligence and, if satisfied, moves forward with acquiring the investment. Similarly, a Self-directed IRA is one in which the account owner performs self-directed investing. While that may seem like a daunting task, it really isn t. The key to your success in self-directing your retirement investing will be surrounding yourself with a team of professionals who can assist with vetting the investments once you ve found them and insuring that the investments are performed within the rules. That team should consist of you, your custodian, an attorney, a tax professional and a financial planner. At this point, you may be asking yourself do I really need a self-directed IRA? The answer to this question is No. You don t need one. But I can give you some compelling reasons why you might want to have one. It is incumbent upon you to maintain a well-diversified retirement portfolio so that you don t end up like many today who were and/or still are heavily invested in the traditional markets. Many of those folks have seen their retirement accounts lose 20-50% of their value over the past three years. Nontraditional assets can provide a hedge against the volatility of the traditional market. Most custodians will not allow non-traditional investments in accounts they custody. However, the non-traditional custodians will allow you to hold traditional assets along with the non-traditional ones in the accounts they custody. You get the best of both worlds. My conclusion then is that while you don t NEED one, you ll want to have a self-directed retirement account so that you have the option to invest in the assets, traditional or non-traditional, of your choosing.

6 5 self-directed investing WHAT TYPES OF IRAS ARE THERE? While there are several different types of accounts, we ll limit our discussion to the two most common account types. Those two are the Traditional Individual Retirement Account and the Roth Individual Retirement Account. The Traditional IRA is the original IRA. It is a tax-deferred retirement savings account. It s tax-deferred in that the contributions to it are paid with funds for which you may, under most circumstances, take a deduction from your income. In return for the deduction on the front end, the investments grow taxfree inside the IRA until you take a distribution from the Account. The distribution is then taxed at the ordinary income tax rate to which you are subject at the time of the distribution. Note that this is a retirement savings account. You may not take qualified distributions until you ve reached age 59 ½ without incurring an early distribution penalty and you must take mandatory distributions from the account after reaching age 70 ½. In addition, you may not make contributions to the account once you ve reached 70 ½. The Roth IRA was created in It is a tax-free retirement savings account. Yes, I did say tax-free. The Roth differs from the Traditional in that it is funded with after-tax dollars. In other words, the contributions are not deductible from your income at the time of the contribution. As with the Traditional IRA, the investments grow tax-free inside the IRA. The big difference is that the distributions are taken tax-free. There are two rules that must be met in order to take qualified distributions from a Roth IRA. First, no qualified distributions may be made until the IRA has aged five (5) years from January 1st of the year in which your first contribution was made to your first Roth IRA. Second, you must have reached age 59 ½. Two other important characteristics of the Roth IRA are that there are no mandatory distribution requirements and you may continue to contribute to a Roth IRA after you reach 70 ½. There are a few other characteristics of these two account types that apply in some circumstances. We re happy to discuss those with you individually as they are beyond the scope of this ebook. Also know that there are two types of IRAs for small business owners, the SEP and the SIMPLE. If you are a small business owner and would like to provide a retirement savings plan to your employees, we re happy to discuss these with you but again, they are beyond the scope of this ebook.

7 6 An Overview Let s start with the types of real estate investments available to you. real estate Perhaps the most common real estate investment found in a retirement account, other than a publicly traded Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT), is the purchase of a parcel of real estate. While it can be a piece of raw land that you wish to hold long term for resale at a later date or to hold for development purposes, more typically it s a single or multi-family residential unit that will be held for rental purposes earning a return through the stream of income generated by the rent payments. Such a property could also be purchased, renovated or rehabilitated and quickly sold. You can also purchase commercial property for the same purposes. Agricultural land can be acquired and leased (Sorry, you can t farm it yourself!). There are also several ways to invest in real estate without actually putting the property in your account (or at least making it much less of a possibility). Tax liens provide one of those opportunities. Tax liens also provide an opportunity to do so at a low cost as many liens are acquired for less than $3, While it is possible to end up with a deed to a property through a lien foreclosure process, statistically, most taxpayers pay off the Perhaps the most lien prior to the expiration of their redemption period. Promissory notes secured by real estate are another of common real estate those opportunities. As the banking industry tightens credit investment found in a requirements, making it harder and harder to get a home loan, even low credit risk borrowers are having a tough time of retirement account...is it. This provides an ever-widening window of opportunity to the purchase of a parcel account owners whose retirement accounts have cash to lend. The hard part may be finding borrowers. However, we believe of real estate. that you, with your own network of friends, family and associates, will be able to turn up likely candidates. Here again, you could end up with a deed if the borrower does not repay the loan by foreclosing on the mortgage or deed of trust. If you choose your borrowers carefully, you ll lessen the likelihood of that occurrence. Then there are those investments in which you will get possession of the property but most likely will not be holding on to it for long. Those vehicles would be the tax deed and the option contract. Most of the people we know who invest in tax deeds, do so with the idea that they will buy on the low end of the market and immediately sell the property. Because they have most likely purchased the deed for a very small percentage of the fair market value, they can sell under market value as well and still profit while moving the property quickly. That is not to say that one cannot purchase a property at a tax deed sale and hold the property as rental property. Options contracts are another means of acquiring property at a low cost without holding onto it for

8 7 long. Typically, investors who utilize option contracts pay a small price for the right to purchase the property at a stated price and then find a buyer to purchase it from them at a price higher than the option purchase price. They will then do a simultaneous close, first exercising their option and then immediately closing on the sale to their purchaser. (Note: Many states, title companies and/or banks are now requiring a seasoning period between the exercise of the option purchase (A to B transaction) and the option purchaser to his buyer (B to C transaction). This means that there may be a period of time during which B must hold record title to the property before the B to C transaction may close. Some will allow same day transfers. Some are requiring 3 to 5 days. At least one bank is now requiring a 31 day holding period. This is important because with a simultaneous close or a same day close, B really doesn t need to bring any money to the closing table. B pays A with the funds from the sale to C. With the holding period, even if it were 24 hours, B would have to pay A. If B does not have the funds, and typically B doesn t, B would have to carry a loan and mortgage for that holding period. We mention this because that opens the door for another line of real estate lending for the retirement account owner with cash in his or her account funding the holding periods. With points, document fees and an interest rate closer to hard money rates, these short term loans can be quite lucrative. A good friend of mine calls this dough for a day. He ll do these loans in his Roth all day long if he s comfortable with the borrower and the property. Those are types of real estate investments you can do in your self-directed retirement account. Individual Investment Types Now let s talk about some of the investments individually. You may have heard that purchasing real estate in your retirement account is a complex transaction and should be avoided. If you ve ever purchased a house for yourself, or purchased investment property outside of a retirement account, you can probably handle the purchase of the same inside your retirement account. The transactions are substantially similar. Are there differences? Absolutely. Are those differences hard to master? Unequivocally, no.

9 8 The transactions are similar in that you find a property you like, you make an offer, you negotiate the best deal that you can and you close the deal when purchasing property for yourself. In your retirement account you find a property that you like, your account makes an offer, you negotiate the best deal you can and your account closes the deal. The differences are procedural. When investing with your retirement account, the paperwork must be completed by your custodian, in this case, The Kingdom Trust Company, who will hold nominal title to the property for the benefit of your account. That means that the offer, purchase agreement and closing documents should be executed by Kingdom Trust. All of the expenses, from the earnest money and inspection fees to the purchase money and closing fees, must be paid out of the retirement account. It s not complicated. It may take a bit more time and attention to detail as paperwork flows from you to Kingdom Trust to the closing agent. Kingdom Trust has experience in these transactions, which helps the transaction flow smoothly. Purchasing Real Property Whether you are purchasing single- or multi-family residential property, commercial or agricultural property, the process above is the process you ll utilize for your retirement account. The process of acquiring land in a foreign country will vary from the process above because some of the documentation may require authentication or an apostile from your state and/or the federal Department of State (Note: These are not difficult to obtain. They just add extra steps and additional time to the process). Once you have located a property and have a purchase agreement titled in the name of your account (Note: we will show you the proper titling if you do not already know it), go to our website,, and complete the Investment Direction Form. Read through the Real Estate Investment Checklist to make sure you have the documents necessary to move forward and send the form and your documents to Kingdom Trust. If earnest money is being paid initially with the purchase funds being paid at a later date, this will be a two step process involving an investment form for the earnest money and an investment form for the rest of the purchase price and closing fees. Once the form and the documents are received, our investment processors will take over and guide the transaction to closing. When closing is over and deed has been recorded it should be delivered to Kingdom Trust for safekeeping in its vault.

10 9 If you do not have sufficient funds in your retirement account to complete the purchase of a piece of real estate, you can borrow to make up the difference. The loan must be a non-recourse loan. That means that the lender s sole source of recovery in the event of a default on the loan is the property itself. It will have no recourse against you the account owner or Kingdom Trust as the custodian. There are banks that specialize in non-recourse lending (Note: Non-recourse lenders typically require a higher loan-to-value ratio (typically 60-70%) and will charge a higher interest rate to complete these loans.). If you use debt financing to acquire a property, you may incur unrelated debt financed income (UDFI) which may require you to file an income tax form for your retirement account. This is something you should discuss with your tax professional team member prior to making the investment. Don t let that scare you. Once you ve discussed the matter with your tax person, you ll know whether the amount of the tax will reduce your return on investment to a point that makes the investment less attractive. In my years in the industry, I ve never heard an investor say he or she pulled out of a deal because the UDFI was too onerous. Options Working with options is very much like an outright purchase. An option contract is a contract between a property owner and a prospective purchaser. For a fee, typically a nominal fee, a property owner agrees to grant a prospective purchaser the right, typically an exclusive right, to purchase a property at an agreed upon price on or before a specified date. If the prospective purchaser exercises the option on or before the specified date, the property owner must sell the property to the prospective purchaser at the agreed upon price. If the prospective purchaser fails to exercise the option on or before the specified date, he or she loses the right to buy at the agreed upon price and the property owner keeps the amount paid for the option. Many beginners in the self-directed arena choose tax liens for their IRAs because they can be acquired relatively cheaply and are relatively secure investments. With the option, you find a piece of property typically with the express purpose in mind of finding a purchaser for the property at a price higher than the option purchase price before the option expires. Most investors who use options look for properties that they can buy under market and move quickly. Many look for pre-foreclosure properties or other properties where owners need to sell and move out quickly. Tax Liens A tax lien is a lien imposed by a local taxing authority upon a piece of real property to secure the payment of taxes. While tax liens are typically imposed by a local government for non-payment of real property taxes, other taxing authorities, such as the IRS, may also impose tax liens for non-payment of income taxes. In jurisdictions that impose personal property taxes, tax liens may attach to personal property as well.

11 10 Those tax liens into which Retirement Account funds are typically invested are real property tax liens. Many beginners in the self-directed arena choose tax liens for their IRAs because they can be acquired relatively cheaply and are relatively secure investments. If you have a couple of thousand dollars in your IRA, you can purchase tax liens. The lien is secured by the property against which the lien has been placed. That is not to say that tax liens are not without risks. As with any investment, there is risk. While studies show that most tax payers do eventually pay the taxes and remove the lien, there is the possibility that the taxes do not get paid and, you, the investor will have to foreclose the lien to get your money back. Then you must absorb the costs of the foreclosure, be successful in the foreclosure and hope the resale, whether at a public auction or in a private sale, results in funds sufficient to meet the initial cost of the lien, the cost of the foreclosure and a profit. The sale of tax liens is typically governed by state law so the rules will be different from state to state. In most instances, the rate of return is set by statute. The sales themselves are typically run by the local governments at the municipal or county level. Each local government may have their own set of rules. That being the case it is incumbent upon you to learn the rules in the jurisdiction in which you wish to invest. You should know going into a sale how to register if necessary, whether there is a deposit required to bid, how the bidding process will work, when the purchase money is due and how it s payable upon a successful bid and whether there is a redemption period in which the taxpayer has the ability to pay the delinquent taxes and its length. Once the purchase has been made and the lien titled to your IRA, the lien is typically held until the taxpayer redeems it or the redemption period expires. If the taxpayer redeems the lien, the county will send Kingdom Trust a check for the purchase amount of the lien plus interest. Interest payments typically run between 5 and 36%. 36% interest rates are very rare. Most rates fall somewhere between the two numbers mentioned.

12 11 There are generally two ways in which you can invest in tax liens. You can learn the rules yourself and perform all of your own research on the liens available in the area in which you would like to invest. Ask Kingdom Trust for a cashier s check made payable to that county s Auditor. Go to that county s lien auction. Bid on the liens selected and have the County title the lien in the name of your Retirement Account and deliver the lien certificate to Kingdom Trust. (Note: Some counties have gone to on-line auctions and require a bank account from which it can electronically pull funds in the event of a successful bid. Others, while maintaining in person auctions, require a bank account from which it can pull funds as well.) Or You can research companies that offer turnkey tax lien services to the public and contract with one of them to purchase liens in the area in which you would like to invest. There are a number of reputable companies in the marketplace, but research before signing a contract. Seek advice from a tax, financial and legal advisor. Once a company is selected, you should ask your custodian to forward the necessary funds to the company. The company will purchase the liens, have them titled to your Retirement Account and have the certificates forwarded to Kingdom Trust. The company will also track the repayment of the lien and the expiration of the repayment period. If the period expires before repayment occurs, the company will typically advise you as to the foreclosure process and help you move forward with the process. Promissory Notes Promissory notes provide a means of investing in real estate without the perceived hassles of ownership. As discussed earlier, banks and other lending institutions, for a myriad of reasons have begun tightening up their lending requirements making it harder and harder for borrowers to get loans. Even some with good credit histories are being denied where their credit scores are not high enough or their debt/income ratios are too high. This provides an opportunity to a retirement account owner who has cash or highly liquid assets in his or her account to turn into cash. That cash can be lent to real estate purchasers who cannot otherwise get a loan. The loan can be secured by the real estate. The cash can be lent to rehabbers and used to fix up properties for resale (Note: This is a very common use of retirement funds in the self-directed world. Many fix and flip investors will borrow funds from retirement accounts. Typically they are purchasing distressed property at a very low price and borrowing enough to pay the purchase price and do the rehabilitation. The lender is then repaid upon the resale of the property. You may hear these loans referred to as hard money loans.).

13 12 private equities The first question people usually ask when they hear the term private equity is What is private equity? Private equity, in terms of an investment option, consists of an investment in the securities of company whose securities are not publicly traded on a stock exchange. The purchase of the securities represents an ownership interest in the company issuing the shares. These shares are typically made available to a limited number of investors through a private offering. The next question they ask is typically What types of Private Equity investments may I make with my Retirement Account? Private Equity investments may be made in a number of different types of companies. Typically those include: C-corporations Limited Liability Companies Limited Partnerships Joint Ventures These investments can be in existing companies as well as start-up enterprises. While these investments can be quite successful, please make certain that you do your homework on the company and its principals and consult with your investment, tax and legal advisors prior to committing your retirement dollars to the investment. These investments are self-directed and Kingdom Trust will not perform an investment review to determine suitability or soundness. Typically, the sale of these shares will be accompanied by a private placement memorandum, which describes the sale and the company issuing the shares much like a prospectus for a public sale, a subscription agreement and an investor questionnaire that sets out the financial qualifications of the potential investor. Look for these documents. If you don t see them, ask the investment sponsor if they are available to you prior to investing. If you re told that they don t exist, ask why. Then check with your team of professionals to see if the reasoning is valid. If it s not, walk away and find another investment.

14 13 precious metals As with Real Estate, many investors do not know that precious metals can be held in an IRA. After all, Section 408 of the Internal Revenue Code says it s a collectible and cannot be held and that funds used for such an investment will be considered a distribution. Remember, however, that we indicated that there is an exception. The exception is also located in Section 408. Section 408(m)(3) states that the term collectible will not apply to U.S. Treasury minted $5, $10, $25 and $50 gold coins, U.S. Treasury minted silver coins, U.S. Treasury minted platinum coins and coins minted under the laws of any state. The term collectible will also not apply to any gold, silver, platinum or palladium bullion of a fineness equal to or exceeding the minimum fineness that a contract market requires for metals which may be delivered in satisfaction of a regulated futures contract. In other words, the fineness required by the Commodities Futures Act. There is one caveat to investing in precious metals with your IRA or other retirement investment vehicle. The statute requires that your custodian, Kingdom Trust, must be in actual physical possession of the metal. That means that you cannot invest in metals programs whereby you purchase the metals but the metals are held by the vendor and you get a certificate representing your purchase.

15 14 promissory notes Investing in promissory notes can mean a number of things. It can mean the purchase of an existing promissory note. This situation can arise when a lender makes a loan and then sells the loan. Any of you who have borrowed money to purchase a home are familiar with this concept. It s very rare these days to have a lender who actually services a loan from inception to payoff. Typically the loans are bundled and sold. This same concept is in play on a smaller scale as well. Often times a small lender or an individual will make a loan and then need to recover the money lent for some purpose (other than borrower default). This provides an opportunity for a retirement account owner with cash or liquid assets that can be readily turned into cash in his or her account. You can purchase the note and its associated payment stream. More often than not, the lender will be willing to sell the note at a discount and you will not only enjoy the interest but some of the principal as well. Investing in promissory notes can also mean turning your retirement account into a bank. As was mentioned before, with banks tightening credit requirements opportunities to turn your account into a bank are becoming more plentiful. Earlier, we spoke of the loans in terms of loans secured by real estate and those are clearly doable. There are also loans to be made for the purchase of automobiles, business equipment and anything else that someone might want to purchase on credit. The loans can be secured or unsecured. The key is that the loans can be made from your retirement account and you can set your rate of return by setting the interest rate and charging origination fees.

16 15 there are a few rules If you are going to self-direct your retirement investments, there are a few rules you must know. Be aware of them. Your team of professionals can explain them more fully to you and help make sure that you invest within them. First, there are things in which you cannot invest. We spoke of that earlier. Section 408 of the Internal Revenue Code is an exclusive statute and not an inclusive one. In other words, it tells you in what you cannot invest as opposed to telling you in what you can invest. The best thing about that is that the list is a very short one. Here are the things in which you cannot invest. Life insurance contracts Collectibles, including: 1. works of art 2. rugs or antiques 3. stamps or gems 4. alcoholic beverages 5. precious metals or coins (some exceptions apply) And Interests in Sub-chapter S Corporations (this one s not in 408) That leaves you with a vast array of things into which you can invest. We urge you to be creative. We will discuss a few of the more popular ones here. But do keep your eyes and ears open for those unique opportunities that knock at your door. Pay attention, use your imagination and answer the door. There are also a few people with whom your IRA cannot invest. These people are called disqualified persons by the Internal Revenue Code and consist of the following: Disqualified Persons: A fiduciary of the plan (your IRA) Any person or entity that exercises control or authority over the management of the plan or plan assets. Any person or entity that provides investment advice for a fee. Any person or entity who has discretionary authority over the administration of the plan b. Any person or entity providing services to the plan 1. Legal Services 2. Accounting and/or auditing Services 3. Record Keeping or TPA Services 4. Actuarial Services

17 16 c. A member of a family of any individual described in a and b above. 1. Family Members include: a. Spouse b. Ancestors (Lineal Antecedents) c. Lineal Descendents d. Any Spouse of a lineal descendent 2. Family Members don t include: a. Siblings b. Aunts and Uncles c. Cousins d. A corporation, partnership, trust or estate of which, or in which, any direct or indirect owner described in a and b above holds 50% or more of the following: 1. The combined voting power of all classes of stock; 2. The capital interest or profits of a partnership; 3. The beneficial interest of a trust or estate. e. An officer, director, managing member, general partner or managing partner of a disquali fied entity who owns 10% or more of the entity s shares. f. Any employee of a disqualified entity who is a highly compensated employee or earns 10% or more of the yearly wages of the entity. As you can see, when they get into the rules about companies and those who work for companies, it can get a bit confusing. Your team of professions can sort this out for you and keep you on the straight and narrow. I keep mentioning this team of professionals. Don t let that scare you. You re not hiring them full time. You ll use them as needed to answer questions for you and to help you structure your investments. Let s move on to the fun stuff, the investments themselves. Let s start with Real Estate. Since this really is the most common of the non-traditional investments, we ll spend a good deal of time with this one and not quite so much with the others.

18 17 history of the IRA The Individual Retirement Account or IRA was created by Congress in the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of Congress determined that people who worked for companies that did not offer a retirement plan to their employees should have the ability to save for their retirement in the same taxadvantaged environment as people who worked for companies that did offer retirement plans. That retirement savings vehicle was the IRA. Now, if ERISA created the IRA, Section 408 of the Internal Revenue Code breathed life into it. It is Section 408 that defines the IRA and tells us who can have one, how much we can put into one and into what we cannot invest. Read that last part again. It tells us into what we CANNOT invest. That s important. When IRAs first became available, they were only offered by banks. Banks had been offering investment products for years We, of course, know prior to offering IRAs to their customers. It makes sense that they that there are a myriad would offer the same investment products to their IRA customers. of other investments As time went on, stock brokers and mutual fund companies began offering IRAs to their customers as well. Similarly, the brokers and we can hold in our mutual fund companies offered their IRA customers the same stocks, IRAs. We can hold real bonds and mutual funds that they d always sold. Because these estate, private equity, vendors dominate the IRA market, and have for years, most of us are precious metals and conditioned to think of the stocks, bonds and mutual funds promoted by these vendors as the only investments we can put into our promissory notes. IRAs. They ve done a great job of perpetuating that myth. And, why wouldn t they. These are the investments that fit into their business model and their business processes. These are the investments from which they make a profit. We, of course, know that there are a myriad of other investments we can hold in our IRAs. We can hold real estate, private equity, precious metals and promissory notes. We can hold many other things as well! Why don t the banks, brokers, mutual fund companies and financial planners tell you about these other investments? I d love to tell you that it s a vast conspiracy by the traditional investment community to protect their profit centers and prevent you, the consuming public, from knowing the truth for fear you d take your money and go elsewhere. That would be sexy and fun. But even I don t believe that s true. The simple fact of the matter is that many of them don t know that you can invest in those non-

19 18 traditional assets. Most bankers, brokers, mutual fund sales people and financial planners were trained in the traditional investment world. I know of CPAs and attorneys that have told their clients that it s illegal to invest in real estate with your retirement funds. The truth is that many of these folks simply don t know that you can invest in anything other than the traditional assets with IRAs. Fortunately, there are those people who do know (and I could tell you here that they kept it a secret because they knew that if the word got out then everybody d be doing it and there would be less for them but that wouldn t be true either). There are IRA custodians who specialize in catering to the folks who are aware that there are other things in which one can invest with ones retirement funds. Over time, these companies have marketed the concept and educated their customers and the general public. More and more people understand that there is a vast array of things into which they may invest with their retirement funds. It simply makes sense that as the traditional markets lose value, investors will look for alternatives to those markets. Many have simply It simply makes cashed out and are keeping their funds in a money market account or certificates of deposit until the traditional market reverses. Their thinking: sense that as the traditional at least I ve stopped the bleeding. Others have embraced the non-traditional markets. markets lose value, investors It s these folks that have embraced the non-traditional markets that will look for we applaud. They, and you, have recognized that these non-traditional alternatives to assets may provide a hedge against the volatility of the traditional markets and that to truly diversify their portfolios, the non-traditional assets those markets. are necessary. Some have turned their backs on the traditional assets completely and are fully invested in the non-traditional assets. We re not suggesting that you do so. We re not financial planners so we don t give that sort of advice. We re just here to give you an education and to show you the possibilities. With that said, let s talk a little bit about self-directed investing.

20 19 things you probably never thought about In addition to the things we ve mentioned here, there are many other things in which you can invest using your retirement account. We ve seen any number of them. One of our favorites is buying mobile homes big deals on little wheels. We ve seen investments in horses, cattle and buffalo. There have been investments in life settlements, lottery winnings and purchases of judicial settlements. Investors have purchased musical instruments for renting to music students and fire trucks to lease to volunteer fire departments. Others have purchased seat licenses at stadiums and season tickets to sporting events. We encourage you to be creative. Use your imagination. Almost anything can be an investment. We hope you ve enjoyed your trip with us through the basics of self-directed investing. We ve enjoyed sharing it with you. Happy investing!

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