This is a brief review of my experiences with the discount brokerage Scottrade. If you are interested, you can open an account at Scottrade here.
I first opened my account with Scottrade a little over five years ago. At the time, my current discount brokerage, Wachovia, began charging an inactivity fee. They claimed I was warned in advance through a notice accompanying my statement, and I could not get the first inactivity fee waived. Disappointed with the unnecessary fee considering the broker already made money from the loaded funds I purchased as a novice investor, I decided to to move my funds to a brokerage recommended by people I trusted.
Scottrade hasn’t let me down yet. My investments at Scottrade and formerly at Wachovia consist of a relatively small amount of funds remaining from gifts given to me as a child, held in a UTMA account until I was out of college. Some of these funds went to pay off the credit cards balances I built up while I wasn’t earning enough money to meet my basic expenses, but the rest has been sitting in this account, invested in AIVSX.
After opening my account with Scottrade, I received a few telephone calls from a customer service representative who wanted to discuss my account. One of Scottrade’s advantages over other discount brokerages is their physical locations. You can visit a Scottrade location and sit down with a broker to discuss your finances.
If you do plan to speak with a broker, listen to our interview with Richard Lewins, the author of How to Keep From Going Broke with a Broker — A Guide to Opening, Maintaining and Surviving Your Brokerage Account before you do in order to go into the discussion with the proper expectations.
Since I do not actively trade with my Scottrade account, I can only share a small amount of details. I receive online statements and I can view my activity, consisting exclusively of dividends reinvested in AIVSX. I have never had a problem with Scottrade and will continue to leave these funds there until they decide to implement an inactivity fee or an account maintenance fee.
I already wasted enough money paying a load fee on each investment as well as a $50 inactivity fee and a $75 termination fee to Wachovia, and I don’t wish to do the same with Scottrade. I have no reason to believe these fees are in this brokerage’s immediate future.
What are your experiences with Scottrade? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.
" alt="Apply for a Scottrade account" />
Updated June 24, 2016 and originally published May 31, 2010. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.