IRA Reviews

Wealthfront IRA Review

Wealthfront Roth IRA, Traditional IRA, Rollover IRA, SEP IRA (individual retirement accounts) review, promotion offer, rating, fees and commissions. Is Wealthfront IRA good and safe way to invest?


Wealthfront offers a variety of different options when it comes to investing accounts, but one of its best set of options is its IRA group. Wealthfront offers three types of IRA’s which are a traditional IRA, a Roth IRA, and a SEP IRA or Simplified Employee Pension IRA. While all three are nuanced in the individuals that can use them, each offers significant benefits that only Wealthfront can bring you.

Setting Up Your Account

Setting up your Wealthfront account is incredibly simple. Just create an account, verify your identity, and within a short amount of time you can be adding dollars to your account.

Wealthfront occupies a different niche than your standard bank as it has no physical locations, thus reducing cost in overhead. Wealthfront also uses sophisticated algorithms to make all of the investment decisions meaning that trades are done faster, simpler, and with more benefit to their clients.

Wealthfront makes setting up your IRA incredibly easy with just a few short questions. Whether you are starting your IRA from scratch or you are transferring thousands of dollars from an existing account, Wealthfront makes the process hassle-free.

You’ll begin by selecting a type of IRA to invest with. Not sure what type of IRA will work best for you? Don’t worry. Wealthfront has easy to read and understand articles that make selecting an account easy. Their help center offers in-depth analysis of each different IRA class and offers recommendations of what would fit your situation best.

Once you’ve selected what type of IRA account you want to open, it’s as simple as adding money to your account and watching the results over time.

The Good

There are many reasons to love Wealthfront’s IRA accounts. The firm makes investing for your retirement easy. Wealthfront does all the work for you.

Once your initial deposit has been added to your IRA account, you can quite literally set it and forget it. Wealthfront will rebalance your account, reinvest dividends, and much much more so that you get the most out of your money.

Wealthfront also makes setting up recurring deposits incredibly simple. Just click the “add funds” button on the account dashboard and within seconds you can set up a weekly, biweekly, monthly, and even quarterly recurring deposit. This deposit will be automatically deducted from the bank account you choose and added to your IRA on the determined day.

Worried that Wealthfront’s investing strategies won’t line up with your risk tolerance? Not to fear as Wealthfront allows you to take a risk assessment for free and at anytime to determine whether your portfolio’s risk should be changed. Folks with higher risk scores can expect higher returns, with the knowledge that those returns could just as easily be gobbled up by the market.

Younger account holders will likely prefer a riskier portfolio with higher exposure to emerging markets and other higher return assets, while account holders nearing retirement age will aim for a more conservative portfolio aimed at wealth preservation. Wealthfront offers both, along with everything in between.

Wealthfront manages your first $10,000 free across all account types, but even after you cross this threshold, the fees Wealthfront charges are a fraction of traditional advisors. There are absolutely no commissions on trades with Wealthfront, no matter how many are made from your account. Better yet, Wealthfront charges only a 0.25% per year management fee once your account exceeds $10,000. With traditional advisors charging nearly twelve times this amount, Wealthfront is saving you huge amounts over time. On an account valued at $100,000, that’s the difference between Wealthfront charging $225, and the traditional advisor charging $3000. The savings is huge, especially when it comes to your IRA account.

Now you’re probably wondering what sort of return you can expect from Wealthfront’s IRA’s. The answer, much like the rest of Wealthfront, is simple. You can expect at least what the best advisors are returning. An account opened in May of 2016 is up just over 8%. This is about 2% better than the S&P 500 over the same span.

Last, but certainly not least, Wealthfront allows you to increase the amount they will manage for free. For every person you refer that opens and funds an account, Wealthfront will manage an extra $5000 absolutely free.

The Bad

There really aren’t a whole lot of negative things to say about Wealthfront’s IRA’s. The biggest knock is that they are not easy on the small account holder. Wealthfront requires a minimum deposit of $500 to open an account and a minimum deposit of $100 to set up a recurring deposit. For the account holder that doesn’t have the upfront cash to get started right away, this can be a deal breaker.

Wealthfront's main, 5-star rated competitor, Betterment (IRA review), charges the same, 0.25% rate, and offers $0 minimum to open an account and 6 months of free service promotion.

Wealthfront IRA Review Conclusion

Wealthfront is easy and simple way to save for retirement. However, it has limited functionality and will appeal only to clients who want a hands-free approach to investing.

Article was updated on 8/30/2017.

Wealthfront IRA reviewed by on . Rating: 4
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