June 24

Patriot Gold Group Review: Ratings and Fees (2022)

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There's definitely a patriotic tint to precious metals investment. The U.S. is the country most known for monetizing gold with the dollar tether. The U.S. Mint's products are, by and large, brandished with iconic imagery symbolizing the nation. So naming your precious metals IRA company Patriot Gold Group seems like a straightforward choice.

But does this gold company deliver? Does it help Americans stay true to the nation's economic foundations of sound money? Certainly, but in its own high-profile-finance way. As we'll soon go over, the company has one of the more transparent upper managements out of any competitor in the sector.

Their products are of a high quality, and since opening their doors in... 1986?, both their brand and the quality of their IRAs has become well-known. There are many things we like and a few things we don't, but generally, the negative sides are minor.

Before we dive into this review:

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About Patriot Gold Group

As we mentioned, Patriot Gold Group takes an interesting, almost novelty approach to revealing company structure. Whereas some companies prefer to keep these details to themselves and others only disclose one or two "top brass" individuals, Patriot Gold Group goes in the opposite direction.

Every company has its own preferences when it comes to this, and great companies can have very little upper transparency. On the other hand, many investors like to know who they're doing business with, and Patriot is more than willing to disclose. As the website tells us, the company is ran by...

  • Jack Hanney, the firm's CEO. Hanney has over 20 years of experience working strictly in finance, though he reveals he's taken an interest in Wall Street things since he was in his teens. Hanney worked in several prominent tech companies before more narrowly focusing on his original interests and subsequently opening Patriot Gold Group
  • Mike Celano, a senior partner with the company and a former Costco executive. Celano, Hanney and others in the company boast about having received tutelage from William O'Neill, famous stockbroker and founder of Investor's Business Daily. Celano lists his residence in far-apart corners of the world as perhaps important to his understanding of the global markets
  • Charley Chartoff, a senior partner with a background in real estate before making a larger commitment to precious metals. Chartoff mentions having held prominent positions in both a large precious metals dealer firm and a retirement firm. He also, sometimes in all capital letters, underscores how important it is that IRA providers have an almost face-to-face relationship with their customers.
Jack Hanney of Patriot Gold Group

Jack Hanney, Patriot Gold Group CEO

The firm's profile goes into much greater detail, outlining the backgrounds of their portfolio managers, retirement specialists and associates. They even disclose some personal details.

We did say Patriot Gold Group takes a unique approach to the name, and we meant it. It feels as if a group of Wall Street people that you'd never expect to even talk to you opened a corner shop. For the customers, we imagine the feeling is a good one.

Related: Augusta Precious Metals Review - Ratings, Fees, Pricing, and More (2022)

Patriot Gold Group reviews

It would certainly be unpatriotic to do your fellow Americans dirty, and in this regard, we believe customers should have no concerns. The company is accredited with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) with an A+ rating, 5 stars and no complaints. On Business Consumer Alliance (BCA), they have 17 reviews, all 5 stars.

It's registered on TrustPilot with no complaints, 97% 5-star reviews and 3% 4-star ones. Talk about top marks. Things somehow get even more excellent on ConsumerAffairs, where the company has managed to get a 5.0/5 rating based on 128 reviews. If you figured having a totally transparent company profile was a rarity these days, how about a flawless ConsumerAffairs record?

Practically the only dissatisfaction we've seen on the part of customers however deep we dug was related to their lack of platinum and palladium, and sometimes pricey coins. We'll cover both separately, though we must note that these are a far cry from a complaint.

Patriot Gold A+ BBB Rating

A+ Rating with the BBB

Company pricing & fees

A primary feature of the company is something they claim is a No Fee for Life IRA, whether a gold or silver one. As we understand, this applies to accounts that are opened with a $250,000 minimum investment. The company does seem to have a bit of "get in touch with us for exact details" feel on some parts, and this is one of them.

Does a $250,000 investment waive fees only on things like custody or storage, or also on the purchase of precious metals? If the latter is the case, we imagine a lack of mark-up will be a great deal for many.

Of course, this high of a minimum investment isn't a prerequisite. The actual minimum is $30,000, which is on the mid-lower end when compared to competitors. In other words, good.

Related: How to Buy Gold and Silver with Your 401(k) or IRA (Tax-Free)

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Custodian and storage services and fees

From what we understand, the company neither utilizes a uniform custodian nor a uniform storage facility. STRATA Trust and Equity Institutional are two custodians that the company works with, though they are also open to utilizing other custodians.

These two charge fees of around $200 for annual custody and a $40 transaction fee. With an initial investment of over $30,000, you'll be eligible for a waive on the first-year rollover fee and up to three years of storage fees. Likewise, they'll do away with the $225 first-time account setup fee on your new Traditional IRA or whichever kind you opted for.

There are four other custodians listed on the website, all top firms, and presumably they would also be willing to work with a non-listed custodian. 

Patriot Gold Group works closely with the Texas Depository and Delaware Depository for gold IRA storage. Both companies are widely used with top precious metals companies, and both IRS-approved for your gold IRA. You can discuss with your Patriot Gold Group representative wich physical gold storage facility makes the most sense for your new precious metals IRA account.

Related: Goldco Precious Metals Review - Is Goldco the Best Precious Metals IRA Provider?

Patriot Gold Group products and services

An IRA company that deals in all four precious metals as opposed to just gold and silver is always a plus. Platinum and palladium are even included in the company logo. Yet they are conspicuously absent from the website inventory.

Given that some claim the company's only been in business for 6 years, perhaps it's a matter of expansion and it's taking them a while to add other precious metals to their inventory. While the absence of items can be inconvenient, knowing that the company will have you covered if you decide to move past only gold and silver is great.

The products in the gold and silver category don't disappoint, for the most part. A very strong point is that the company lists their products individually in both gold and silver categories, with "bullion", "exclusive", "proof" and "IRA-eligible" coins that you can select from individually. This makes browsing much clearer and clarifies what does and doesn't go into an IRA.

Something we consider a bit lacking right now is their selection of bullion bars. In both the gold and silver category, only 10-ounce bars are available. Coins are much more diverse. Past American Gold Eagle and American Silver Eagle and Canadian Maple Leaf Gold and Silver coins, you can find many other top-notch bullion coins.

Other entries include Austrian Philharmonics, Krugerrands, Canadian Polar Bears and silver rounds. The 1933 St. Gaudens - Gold Double Eagle is an example of a collectible that is undoubtedly rare and valuable, not often found among precious metals IRAs dealers as it was minted between 1907-1933. However, with all of these items, there is one clear issue: a lack of price.

Related: How to Rollover Your 401(k) or IRA into Physical Gold and Silver

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What don't we like about Patriot Gold Group? 

 Since they've made such an effort to have a spotless record, it's only fair that we gloss over some things that we find less-than-ideal compared to competitors. You'll notice that many of these points seem almost inconsequential to the good sides, but they are no less worth highlighting. For example...

No clear pricing on items

This isn't a red flag so much as an eyesore. Instead of even giving us an idea of how much they charge for an individual coin, the company treats every purchase as a "quote." Therefore, visitors to the website have no idea how much of a premium the company is selling the coins for.

While this seems negligible, knowing mark-ups up-front is an important part of deciding who your gold IRA provider will be, and sometimes, we like to know them without emailing the company. A clearer inventory picture in regards to pricing as opposed to necessitating that every interested party reaches out would be optimal, without question. Even an average price could go a long way.

In fairness, it is important to note that the majority of these gold IRA company websites operate in the same manner and ask customers to call for pricing details.

Related: What is Stagflation and What Does it Mean for Your Investments?

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Company website 

When vetting a gold IRA company, you want all of the important information easy to find on the firm's corporate website. This is another thing that stands out, all the more so given the company's transparency. Their website is lacking in some information a customer may look for when vetting a precious metals IRA company. 

A somewhat difficult-to-find part of their website describes their U.S. storage as following: no set up, deposit or withdrawal fees, low rates, complete segregated storage, 100% insured in an underground facility with private security.

That all sounds nice, especially the part about segregated storage. Many bullion owners consider this to be a priority, whether kept in a self directed IRA or otherwise. The storage company listed is Texas Depository. From there, we are left with questions.

Does Patriot Gold Group have overseas storing options since the section is listed as "U.S. storage"? If so, what are they? What other facilities or depositories does the company work with? We've found it mentioned numerous times that the company utilizes vaults in different locations. Presumably, storage can be adjusted based on customer preference.

With a quick phone call we learned that Patriot Gold Group also works closely with Delaware Depository (another excellent storage option). Since some competitors go as far as arranging tours to the storage facilities they're partnered with, we feel this part of their website could do with some improving.

Non-existent platinum and palladium

Customers that open a precious metals IRA account with a company that deals in all four will probably want easy access to these two options. The company is willing and able to sell customers a variety of platinum and palladium bars and coins. Yet details are nowhere to be found on the company website, logo notwithstanding.

Related: Credit Suisse Gold Bars - What Investors Need to Know

Patriot Gold Group review - Verdict 

While we did seem to go to some lengths in the "What don't we like?" section, in reality, there isn't much bad to be said about the company. Just the opposite: while every firm has its own business model, there's definitely an example to follow when it comes to Patriot.

They've been the recipient of the Consumer Affairs award for Top Rated Gold & Silver Dealer for six consecutive years, an impressive record for this competitive sector. While we are often understanding of how a company can accrue some negative reviews over time, we are equally in disbelief when a company completely lacks in negative reviews or complaints during all their years of business.

As one of their slogans says: "We are patriots, serving patriots!", and they've done it well. Review after review, we hear how customers enjoyed dealing with the company and were treated like an individual. Oftentimes, their expectations were exceeded regardless of how positive they were going in.

Another thing we haven't mentioned, but that many will find of importance, is that the company sports a 24-hour account setup, which is corroborated by their customers. If true, this is indeed setting an industry standard when even top precious metals brokers in retirement investments can take weeks to open an account. And there don't appear to be any ill effects to this speedy process, judging by the lack of negative reviews.

There is a lack of clarity regarding a few things, but it sort of ties into the company's bottom line. Patriot Gold Group wants you to reach out to them and establish a long-lasting partnership, even if it means slightly pushing you to inquire about some details. If you're the kind of investor that doesn't like this approach, chances are that the bulk of the company's appeal could fall short on you.

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About the author 

Ilir Salihi

Ilir is passionate about personal finance, investing, and digital marketing. He's written about precious metals and cryptocurrencies since 2013. When he's not publishing new content, he's spending time at home in Washington, D.C. with his family.

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