Open a Self-directed IRA

The quickest way to establish a self-directed IRA account with M2 Trust is to use the online account opening feature.  Simply click on the “Open An Account” button and follow the instructions.  A fillable PDF version of our application kit can also be found under the Forms tab.

Buy Real Estate

The self-directed investor is responsible for selecting and evaluating the real estate investment and negotiating the purchase price. However, the offer is made in the name of M2 Trust, Custodian, FBO (your name) (IRA account type). As a self-directed IRA investor you should review the purchase and sale agreement and sign at the end as “read and approved”.  Send that document with a completed Real Estate Investment Directive to M2 Trust will execute the final documents on behalf of your IRA.

Note:  Any funds required for the real estate purchase must come from the IRA. You may not write a check for escrow/deposit out of your personal checking account.


Calculate my Fees

M2 Trust Services’ fees are based on asset type and not account value.  Asset administration service fees are charged on a quarterly basis. The M2 Fee Schedule shows the breakdown of all account and asset administration fees, transaction fees and miscellaneous service fees that may be incurred for purchasing or selling an investment, paying an asset-related expense or taking a distribution

Fund a Self-directed IRA

IRA to IRA Transfer:  Complete the Transfer Request form and then print, sign and send it to M2 Trust for processing.  The requirement for a hard copy of the transfer authorization is that some custodians still require hard copy and “wet” or original signatures.

Rollover of a 401(k) or other Qualified Plan from a former employer:  Contact the plan administrator to determine their process.  Make sure that the rollover check is made out to:  M2 Trust Services LLC.  The check should be sent to M2 Trust with a completed copy of a IRA Rollover Certification.

Invest in a Promissory Note

The IRA account owner is responsible for negotiating the terms of the promissory loan. Terms include amount to be borrowed, interest charged, term of the loan, frequency of loan repayment and an amortization schedule.

Complete and send an Private Note Investment Directive to  Include a copy of the promissory note, evidence of ownership of any collateral and amortization schedule.  If you choose to use a Note Servicing Agent, you will be asked to provide contact information so that we may reach out and provide delivery instructions for loan payments.

Pay Investment Expenses

Send an email to, along with a copy of the invoice, and request M2 Trust to issue payment. M2 Trust will process the expense payment request within 2 business days after receipt of paperwork in good working order.

Self-direct an Investment

First, make sure your account is opened and funded prior to self-directing an investment.  Account funding can take several weeks to complete and is dependent on your current custodian's process and timeframe.

Since each Alternative Investment type has its own unique set of required documentation, it is best to review our requirements before making an investment. This information can be found in our Learning Center under “Investor Guides.”

Invest in a Private Offering

As a self-directed IRA investor you should review the following offering documents thoroughly before directing an IRA investment.

  • Operating Agreement of the Entity
  • Private Placement Memorandum (PPM)
  • Subscription Agreement

You may want to consult with your financial adviser or a securities attorney to help you in your review. When you are ready to proceed with the investment, complete the Subscription Agreement in the name of M2 Trust Services LLC Custodian FBO (Your Name) IRA Account Number and email to along with a completed Private Offering Investment Directive.

Take a Distribution

Distributions from your IRA may be taken at any time by completing a IRA Distribution Request form.  If you are under the age of 59-1/2, you will incur a 10% early withdrawal penalty in addition to taxes on the distributed amount. If you are over the age of 70-1/2, you are required to take Required Minimum Distributions (RMD).  Our RMD FAQs will help you understand the process for taking a required minimum distribution.