No Fee IRA

Best Free, No Fee IRA Accounts


Below are top online brokerage firms and banks that offer free IRA accounts to their customers. These companies don't charge retirement account setup, annual, monthly, or maintenance fees but might charge for closing an IRA account or account transfer to a different financial institution.

Table below lists best companies for no fee IRA account. It also contains the types of IRAs the firms offer, investment commissions charged, and products you could invest.

No Fee IRA
Firm
Investing
Commissions
IRA Account
Types
Investments
Offered
IRA
Review


Ally Invest rating

Ally Invest


Stocks, ETFs: $4.95

Mutual Funds: $9.95

Options: $4.95 plus
$0.65 per contract
  • Roth IRA
  • Traditional IRA
  • Rollover IRA
  • SIMPLE IRA
  • SEP IRA
  • Coverdell Education Savings Account (ESA)
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Forex
  • CDs
  • ETFs
Ally Invest
IRA Review


TD Ameritrade rating

TD Ameritrade


Stocks, ETFs: $6.95

Mutual Funds: $49.99

Options: $6.95 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Traditional IRA
  • Roth IRA
  • Rollover IRA
  • SEP IRA
  • SIMPLE IRA
  • Individual 401k (for small business)
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
  • Futures
  • Forex
TD Ameritrade
IRA Review


Etrade rating

E*trade

Stocks, ETFs: $6.95

Mutual Funds: $19.99

Options: $6.95 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Rollover IRA
  • Traditional IRA
  • Roth IRA
  • IRA for Minors
  • Complete™ IRA
  • Beneficiary IRA
  • SEP IRA
  • SIMPLE IRA
  • Individual 401(k)
  • Money Purchase
  • Profit Sharing
  • Investment-Only Non Custodial
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Futures
  • ETFs
Etrade
IRA Review




Free IRA Accounts


In 2017 there is no need to pay maintenance and inactivity fees for an IRA account. The two big players in the no fee IRA marketplace are E*Trade and TD Ameritrade. Both have easy and fast online account opening process. Their commissions and minimum initial amounts are inline with competitors.


E*Trade


Along with no fee IRA accounts, E*Trade offers only 28 branches nationwide, so it’s geared to the strictly online user. The basic trading fee is $6.95 per transaction, though if you place more than 30 trades a month, your fee drops to $4.95. The minimum deposit is $500 for taxable accounts but for IRA's it is $0. You can trade bonds for a $1 each.

There is no cost for trading NL, NTF mutual funds. Otherwise, the fee is $19.99 plus whatever load or fee the mutual fund provider extracts. Your IRA will also have to shell out 25 bucks if you remove an excess contribution, recharacterize a contribution or take an early distribution -- that is, before age 59 1/2.

With E*Trade IRA you can access about 7,600 mutual funds, of which 1,100 are no load NTF (no commission to buy or sell). The broker offers a high-tech trading platform that a must for the active trader.


Etrade Promotion Offer


At E*TRADE, active traders get $4.95 trades + 50₵ per options contract.







TD Ameritrade


TD Ameritrade is another popular retirement accounts provider and offers 100% no fee IRA's. There are no fees for opening or closing an individual retirement account (ROTH, traditional, or self-employed IRA's) as well as no annual or monthly maintenance or inactivity charges.

TD Ameritrade has 626 retail branches - that's by far the highest number among online brokers. You can place stock and ETF online trades for $6.95. The brokerage offers 100+ commission-free ETFs. TD Ameritrade doesn’t require a minimum deposit unless you are trading options or on margin, in which case the ante is $2,000.

TD Ameritrade lets you access more than 13,000 mutual funds, of which 2,600 are NTF. You don’t pay a commission unless the mutual fund is not part of the NTF universe, in which case you’ll pay a $49.99 fee. TD Ameritrade devotes a section of its website to comprehensive retirement planning. The broker offers a promotional offer of up to $600 bonus to open a no fee IRA account.


TD Ameritrade Promotion Offer


Trade free for 60 days + get up to $600.







Annual IRA Fees Charged by Brokerage Firms

Brokerage Setup IRA Fee Inactivity Fee Annual IRA Fee
Ally Invest$0NoNo
TD Ameritrade$0NoNo
Capital One Investing$0NoNo
Charles Schwab$0NoNo
Choicetrade$25$15 quarterly fee if customer makes less than five trades in a calendar quarter$50 annual IRA fee, $25 IRA setup fee
Etrade$0NoNo
Fidelity$0NoSimple IRA: $350 per plan collected annually from the employer; or $25 per participant collected annually from participants' accounts. HSA: $48, waived in some instances. $12 annual Low Balance Fee for each noncore Fidelity mutual fund if balance is under $2,000.
Firstrade$0NoNo
Interactive Brokers$0$10 per month minimum commission requirement to avoid $10 monthly fee (rises to $20 monthly if account balance is less than $2,000)$7.50 quarterly fee for IRA accounts ($30 per year)
Just2trade$0No$50 annual fee (waived for accounts with over $10,000.00 in assets and at least 40 trades)
Lightspeed Trading$25Minimum monthly commission for accounts under $5,000 is $25$30 annual IRA fee
Merrill Edge$0NoNo
Motif Investing$0NoNo
Scottrade$0NoNo
Sogotrade$0No$35 annual IRA fee
TradeStation$0No$35 annual IRA fee
USAA$0NoNo
Vanguard$0No$20 annual maintenance fee for regular accounts with balance less than $50,000. Annual IRA fees: $25 for SIMPLE IRA, $15 for 403(b)(7), $20 for Individual 401(k)/Roth 401(k) plans, $20 for 529 plan
Wellstrade$0No$25 Minimum Balance Fee, if account is less than $5,000; $30 monthly service fee if PMA Package has less than $50,000 in all accounts


Brokerage Maintenance, Setup and Annual IRA Fees


In 2017 the majority of discount online brokers do not charge annual IRA fees for individual retirement accounts: Traditional, ROTH, Simple IRA, SEP IRA, and self-employed 401(K). As you see from the IRA fees chart above, some companies (usually small firms or those targeting day-traders) impose IRA maintenance fees (also called annual IRA fees). These charges could really add up over the years - you are not only loosing the total amount of the fees but also all the interest or investment gain that might have accumulated on that money over many years.

The worst companies in regard of annual IRA and account inactivity fees are Interactive Brokers and Lightspeed Trading. They cater mostly to very active traders (day-traders) for whom these fees just don't matter. On the other hand, the majority of long-term, buy-and-hold investors do care about the fees. As you see, the firms that fiercely compete over this large group of customers, such as TD Ameritrade, Etrade, Scottrade, Charles Schwab, USAA brokerage and others, do not charge any IRA fees.

Every year IRA setup fees at discount brokerage companies are becoming more and more rare. Only a few brokers now charge these - a dramatic drop from 10 years ago. With that trend, in a few years IRA setup fees will become completely extinct.

Getting a no-fee IRA account (no annual and setup fees), while important, should not be the only factor when choosing a company where to open an individual retirement account. Other parameters, such as commissions, other fees, products offered, retirement education and calculators, investment research and customer support are at least as important.


Updated on 9/12/2017.


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