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For custodians who handle non-traditional investments, I looked at Equity Trust, Pensco, Guidant, Millenium, and Entrust. I decided against Guidant because I could not reconcile managing an LLC whose only investor was my IRA with self-dealing restrictions. Equity Trust was my top choice until my contact demonstrated a lack of attention to detail. Doing a spreadsheet based on my hypothetical portfolio, Penso was more expensive than Equity Trust, but quite a bit less than Entrust. In all cases, the cost-to-portfolio value ratio was less than 1%, but you would need to create your own model to reflect what you want to do--all the custodians charge differently and for different things.

Can someone buy a house across the street and put it in an IRA? Actually, you fund your IRA and then you direct the custodian of your IRA to buy the house. I have NOT done this yet--just did the initial paperwork for the IRA on Friday, and will be working on the funding next week.

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