Allowable Investments for an IRA Account

Which investments are allowed in an IRA or 401(k)? That question can be best answered by rephrasing it to, which investments are NOT allowed in an IRA or 401(k)?

Through IRS Publications and the Internal Revenue Code, the government instructs us on what IRAs and 401(k)s cannot invest in rather than what they can invest in.

IRA-Permitted Investments

Allowable investments include the following:

  • Residential real estate—including apartments, single family homes, and duplexes
  • Commercial real estate
  • Undeveloped or raw land
  • Real estate notes (mortgages and deeds of trusts)
  • Promissory notes
  • Private limited partnerships, limited liability companies, and C corporations
  • Tax lien certificates
  • Foreign currencies
  • Oil and gas investments
  • Publicly traded stocks, bonds, mutual funds
  • Private stock offerings, private placements
  • Judgments/structured settlements
  • Gold bullion
  • Car paper
  • Factoring investments
  • Equipment leasing