Entrusting your retirement savings accounts with a company is a big deal. After all, you spend upwards of your entire working life saving for the golden years, and you don’t want to leave those funds with just anyone. Beagle is a self-proclaimed “financial concierge” offering individual 401(k) accounts and other services. Is it safe?
Here’s the rundown of what Beagle 401(k) accounts entail and whether the platform is safe and legitimate for you to use.
What is Beagle 401(k)?
Cyrus Ghazanfar, Jeffrey Tha, and Shuo Jiao founded Beagle Invest in December 2020. The fintech company helps you find old 401(k) accounts from previous jobs and roll them over to a new, consolidated account. Beagle says this helps trim investment management fees by as much as two-thirds.
Ghazanfar, who currently serves as chief technology officer at Beagle, wrote on LinkedIn, “After only [seven] months since launch, Beagle has helped thousands of people find their lost 401(k) accounts.”
How does Beagle 401(k) work?
Beagle works by tracking down all your old 401(k) accounts from previous jobs. During this process, Beagle showcases the hidden fees you’ve been paying out of your investment capital in these accounts.
The platform boasts a “hassle-free rollover” in which it takes care of rolling over all your old accounts to a new, consolidated individual 401(k) account. If you don’t want to roll all them over, you can also borrow money through a loan from an old account at 0 percent net interest.
Are Beagle 401(k) accounts safe and secure?
Beagle is a small company with just a handful of employees, though it does seem to be on a hiring spree to mark its current growth. It doesn't have any publicized funding rounds to speak of. However, reviews suggest Beagle has been fruitful for people with old, forgotten 401(k) accounts that are hard to track down.
Signing a new account with Beagle is free, but the service does charge a free to access the 401(k) accounts it tracks down.
If your primary goal is to track down an old 401(k) account and roll it over, you have an alternative that doesn’t require using Beagle. Inactive retirement accounts are usually turned over to your state’s abandoned property portal after a period of two to three years. By visiting MissingMoney.com, navigating to the state search, and clicking on your former or current place of residence, you can find the state’s search portal for unclaimed property. Be aware that there may be tax consequences when claiming an old 401(k) account.
If you don’t want to go through this process or deal with the government, you can use Beagle for a small fee. As for legitimacy and safety, Beagle seems to be a straightforward fintech operation, however quaint. For many individuals who have old retirement savings accounts that they forgot about or never realized they signed up for at a younger age, finding thousands of dollars is well worth the search.