Why There's Never Been a Better Time to Open a Brokerage Account

by Christy Bieber | Published on Aug. 10, 2021

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Opening a brokerage account is cheaper and easier than ever.

Do you have a brokerage account? If not, you're missing out. This is the golden age of online brokers, and there's never been a better time to open a brokerage account.

Here are a few reasons why.

1. You have a wider array of brokerage options

While there used to be a limited number of brokers, many of whom focused on wealthy clients, there's now a huge number of brokerage firms. And many of them specifically started with the goal of democratizing investing and making it easier for the average person to start investing.

It's now possible to find brokers that allow trading with a mobile app, as well as traditional, web-based brokers that offer in-depth research tools and professional trading platforms. This means investors at any skill level, with any level of interest can find a broker that's right for them.

2. It's cheaper than ever to invest with an online brokerage firm

Gone are the days of high minimum account balances and expensive trading commissions. With most brokers now, there's no minimum balance, so you can start investing with $1.

Most brokers don't charge account maintenance fees or require a minimum amount of monthly activity to avoid fees. And most have even eliminated commissions so you can trade even small sums of money without losing all of your returns to fees.

3. It's now easier to work with a broker

You don't need to be an investing expert or a tech guru to figure out how to open a brokerage account and trade stocks, bonds, or other investments.

There are stock brokers for beginners that have developed easy-to-use trading platforms. Screeners make it easy to find investments that are right for your portfolio and online webinars and educational reference libraries that help you learn about investing in your spare time.

For those who need even more help, many brokers now offer model portfolios or robo-advising services that allow you to pay a small fee for your investments to be managed for you.

4. You have more investment options

There are a huge number of assets you can invest in, including exchange-traded funds (ETFs), which are simple to research, charge low fees, and allow you to track financial indexes or gain exposure to niche markets. The rise of ETFs has resolved some of the issues that made investing expensive, such as the need to buy mutual funds with high fees or minimum investment requirements if you wanted to invest in financial indexes.

Fractional shares have also opened up the door to being able to invest in any stock you want, even expensive ones. A number of brokers allow you to buy fractions of shares now, so it's possible to buy into some of the country's biggest and best-known companies with just a few dollars. And anyone who buys a fraction of a share gets the same percentage return on their investment as those purchasing thousands or millions of shares.

Since investing is easy and cheap and there are plenty of options when it comes to assets to invest in, opening a brokerage account just makes sense for most people. If you don't already have one, check out the best brokerage firms and open an account today so you can start building wealth.

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