A self-directed retirement account could be an IRA, Roth IRA, 401(k), Roth 401(k), Pension Plan, SEP or even an HSA or Coverdell or College IRA. Any of these accounts could be moved from a traditional brokerage to a custodian or structure that allows you to invest in what Wall Street calls "alternative investments." These other investments could include real estate, promissory notes, precious metals and private company stock. The usual reaction I hear from investors is, "Why haven't I ever heard of these self-directed IRAs or self-directed 401(k)s before? Furthermore, why have I always.. Read entire article here.