Funding Your Investment Account
There are several ways to make a deposit into your online investment account, but in today's fast-paced world, almost everyone uses an Electronic Funds Transfer. There are other options that we'll cover, but let's start with the most popular.
Electronic Funds Transfer
An Electronic Funds Transfer (or EFT) is just like an electronic check. You provide us with your bank account number and your bank's routing number, tell us the amount of money to want to transfer, and in 1-2 business days, your money has moved. Just like a paper check, though, an EFT is a promise from you that the money is available in your bank account. When we make a request for that money, your bank will send it if it's available, or the electronic deposit can bounce (just like a check!).
Let's talk timing. We process Electronic Funds Transfers at 5 PM ET every business day. As long as you make that deadline, you'll see the money in your investment account the next business day. Pretty quick, eh? But let's say there's a stock that you just have to have - TODAY - but you don't have the cash in your account. Don't sweat it; we've got you covered. When placing a trade, choose the Express Funding option. With Express Funding, we'll charge $6.95, plus the commission for that trade, and you won't have to wait for your deposit to arrive.
Ever heard of a federal bank wire? It has some things in common with an EFT, but with at least one important difference. A federal bank wire is guaranteed cash. If we get a wire from you, we know for sure that it can't bounce. The bonus? You're guaranteed that there will be no holds on that deposit. This is an especially good idea if you're sending us a large amount of money.
We won't charge you if we receive a wire from your bank, but your bank will probably charge you to send it (remember, it's guaranteed). Also, wires must be from a U.S. bank or credit union. We can't accept wires from wire services (in other words, if they advertise on the side of a bus, chances are it's a no-go).
If you're a little more old-school (and we don't mean that in a bad way, we promise), you can always mail us a check. It takes a little longer, but good things come to those who wait, right? How long depends on just how quick the mail is, and the hold time on a check is a little longer, of course. You're welcome to send personal checks, cashier's checks, or even money orders.
If you'd rather that some of your paycheck goes directly into your investment account, you can set up a payroll deposit. Just print the instructions from our website and deliver them to your payroll department- they'll take it from there. Remember that if you need to make any changes to that recurring deposit, talk to your payroll department. We're just the ones who hold it for you once it gets here.