"One's first step in wisdom is to question everything--and one's last is to come to terms with everything." ~ Georg Christoph Lichtenberg
The Ultimate Stash?
Exclusive to STR
Individual Pirates have individual needs and personal preferences, so the concept of an ultimate stash may be a bit of a stretch, but I'm going to give it a shot anyway. Your mileage may vary.
Let's assume that you are planning to retire with a portfolio worth $300,000, of which 20% ($60,000 in cash) will be converted to precious metal coins. What would that stash look like? How large would it be? Could you secure it or move it around if you were mobile? If you plan on living in an RV, how would you secure the stash?
All good questions, but here are some that you must answer first:
- Will you be living off this stash or will it be for insurance only?
- How mobile will you be?
- Are you a packrat or will you travel light?
- Have you already made security arrangements for this stash?
- Will you be living near civilization or out in the boondocks somewhere?
Let's assume that you will not be living off this stash, you will be mobile in an RV, you will travel light, you have made no security arrangements, and you will be living in the boondocks since you dislike urban sprawl, plus you value fresh air, freedom, and privacy.
Since you will not be living off this stash, you won't need to routinely sell coins'barring an economic meltdown'so you don't really want any silver since the bulk could be problematical in your mobile situation. You will also pay cash for your RV, to remain debt free, with no monthly RV loan payment.
That leaves you with only three choices for precious metal coins: palladium, gold, and platinum. Let's assume that you plan to buy only legal tender coins to facilitate crossing national borders as you travel. Your primary candidates are palladium Maple Leafs, gold Maple Leafs, gold Eagles, Krugerrands, and platinum Eagles.
Krugerrands are not always available, so you decide to limit them, even though they are the least expensive gold bullion coins on the market. Let's assume that you decide to purchase some palladium Maple Leafs for diversification and flexibility and some platinum Eagles to minimize the size of your stash. You also decide that gold coins will comprise the bulk of your stash, choosing gold Eagles over gold Maple Leafs because you prefer a more durable coin with no potential paperwork involved.
Since you will not be living off the stash, you opt for one-ounce coins only, to stretch your fiat currency. Your palladium Maple Leafs will also serve nicely as proxies for half-ounce gold Eagles, based on current prices.
All you need to do now is allocate the percentage of each of the four coins toward a $60,000 cash purchase. You decide that gold will comprise 80% of your total stash, 40% in Eagles and 40% in Krugerrands; platinum will comprise 15%, and palladium 5%.
For comparison purposes, an all-palladium Maple Leaf stash would be 197 coins, an all-Krugerrand stash would be 107 coins, and an all-platinum Eagle stash would be 57 coins.
If gold hits $1,000 an ounce, an all-gold Eagle stash would only be 59 coins.
You don't have to buy all of your coins at once. Buy when you can afford to and on the dips. If you can afford $500 per month, it will take you ten years to fund this stash. Due to the current high price of platinum, you may want to delay buying platinum Eagles.
Many upscale RVs offer a floor safe as optional equipment, but they can also be installed in less expensive units. Even a small floor safe will easily handle 103 one-ounce bullion coins. A good watchdog, an alarm system, and a home defense shotgun should provide all of the security you will ever need for your ultimate stash in the boondocks.
Unless you have bags of silver coins, storing your stash is not really a problem, even if you are living on the road in an RV. But what do you do if you don't yet have a floor safe installed in your RV?
These coins are all about the same diameter as D-cell batteries. They fit well inside a D-cell flashlight. If you have a flashlight, you already have a safe for about twenty coins.
If you stack several coins inside a flashlight before installing the batteries, the flashlight will still function normally, making it an even more effective hiding place.
You can also replace several batteries from a multi-cell flashlight with coins, then install the correct bulb for the actual number of batteries in use, and the flashlight will function normally, with full light output.
Can safes are available online for under $20. They look just like the real thing and they will hold plenty of coins. Simply place your loaded can safe under the kitchen sink, in a cupboard, or on a shelf with other cans and you are all set.
The only real problem with an ultimate stash is if you don't have one when you need it.