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If you plan on buying and selling securities yourself, I would recommend using Questrade.
I’ve been using the Questrade online trading platform for over 2 years now and I’ve had a great experience with them.
First and foremost, it’s safe. Questrade was founded in 1999 and it’s been around ever since.
So don’t be nervous in thinking that you’re depositing money into something fishy, Questrade is a very, very reputable and respected company.
Questrade has a few different investing options available to clients, but the one I personally use for buying stocks is their self directed investing plan.
This is what you’ll want to select if you plan on buying individual stocks, ETFs, Mutual funds, Bonds, etc yourself.
You have full control over your portfolio with this plan.
Sign up is free, there is no annual or monthly cost, and commission fees are very reasonable.
Questrade Trading Fees
Stocks – $.01 per share or a $4.95 minimum cost. So unless you’re buying hundreds of shares, you’ll be paying roughly $5 in commission fees when buying stocks on Questrade.
For example, if you buy 10 shares, your cost won’t be $.10. It will be $4.95 as that is the minimum cost per transaction.
ETFs – Buying ETFs on Questrade is completely free. Yup, $0. Buy 1 share buy 100 shares, I don’t care – it doesn’t matter, no cost whatsoever.
As someone who invests in ETFs, this is something I love about Questrade.
When you sell the ETF, you will be charged the $.01 per share (up to $4.95), but hey, hopefully you’ll make enough money from that ETF that it won’t really matter.
6 Reasons Why I Recommend Questrade as an Online Brokerage
Like all my recommendations, I recommend products and services that I use and love.
I’ve included a screenshot of my Summary dashboard below, of course I had to hide some personal information.
Okay, but back to the point, why do I recommend Questrade as a trading platform?
We already talked about the low commission fees, but here are a few other reasons why I love Questrade and why I recommend them to anyone looking to invest in the stock market themself.
1. User Friendly
Questrade is very user friendly. And what I mean by that is their user interface on both the desktop and mobile app is very easy to navigate and understand.
The design is super clean, you won’t see any ads or pop ups, the load time is very quick and it’s just a very solid user experience.
As I talk about in my article 9 Reasons Why Questrade is Good for Beginners, Questrade is a great platform for people who have no prior experience with online brokerage platforms.
I was a little intimidated by all the lingo and all the numbers when I first registered for my online Questrade account, but after 3-4 days I felt like I’d been using it for years.
2. Amazing Customer Service
The customer service department at Questrade is great. And I’m not just saying this.
I’ve had to contact them a few times because my initial deposits were taking longer than I expected (my banks fault) and the process was very quick and seamless.
I called their 1-888 number and spoke with an actual human being within minutes, and they resolved my issue! It was great.
I actually remember hanging up the phone and thinking, “wow, why can’t all of my support calls go that smoothly”.
While I haven’t done any surveys or primary research myself on how great their customer service is, from the reviews I’ve seen on other websites, other people seem to agree – which I’m not surprised by at all.
3. Low Account Minimum
This one is pretty straightforward, but all I am saying here is that I think it’s great that you only need an initial deposit amount of $1,000 to start investing in Questrade.
Other online brokerages often require $5,000 or even $10,000 to start investing, but not Questrade.
I started investing in Questrade just after graduating university, so I really didn’t have much more to invest with at the time then $1,000, so this was really helpful.
4. Mobile Experience
The mobile experience with Questrade is a very good one.
Unfortunately, you’ll just have to take my word on this one.
I would love to take screenshots and show you from my phone but there is just too much personal information that would have to be crossed out and it would make it look bad – Which is the exact opposite of reality.
Like the desktop interface, the Questrade mobile app design is fantastic.
I can always find what I’m looking for with ease, the design is aesthetically pleasing, and it seems very secure.
While it doesn’t have all the same capabilities of the desktop version, you can still buy, sell and monitor stocks from the app, which I find very handy.
Bored at work? Why not just open up your phone and buy a couple more shares of Tesla.
Isn’t that crazy? What was life like before phones? Gosh, I do not want to know.
5. Low Fees
I talked about this earlier but I wanted to mention it again briefly, Questrade really does a great job keeping their fees low.
$4.95 a trade is as good as you’re going to get. Yes, Wealthsimple’s Trading platform has $0 commission fees but they charge on the USD to CAD conversion, and that amount could be much, much more.
And yeah, who knows, it’s possible you’ll find an online broker out there that has a little cheaper commission fees, but for the quality of service you’ll get with Questrade, this fee is a bargain!
6. Strong Reputation
Last but not least, Questrade’s strong reputation is something that I appreciate.
Questrade has been in business since 1999, and with over $18M in assets under management, I can trust them with my money.
Investing money can be scary, you don’t want to feel like you’re giving your money to a sketchy company that was started up in a garage last week, you want to have faith that your hard earned money is in good hands.
But hey, don’t only take my word for it, look at other reviews online – you’ll find a similar trend.
Questrade is a reputable company with a strong brand. It just is.
With over 100,000 new accounts being open every year, I think that speaks for itself.
I actually wrote about an article about the safeness and legitimacy of Questrade if you wanted to know more about how it protects it user data.
How Do You Setup a Questrade Self Directed Investing Account?
Pretty straightforward really, go their website, click “Open an Account” and then choose the type of account you want to open.
Depending on what country you live in, this could be a TFSA, an RRSP, a Roth IRA, a traditional IRA, a margin account, you name it, Questrade will have it for you.
After that, you’ll have to fill out some online paper work, name, SIN, DOB, typical stuff.
You’ll also have to upload a driver license or some sort of photo identification so they can verify you are who you say are.
You’ll also have to make your initial deposit at this time, remember it only has to be $1,000.
After those small hurdles, you’ll have to wait 3-5 business days for everything to get approved and then you’re good to go.
There honestly isn’t much to it. You don’t have to go into any banks, or talk to anyone on the phone, it’s all done online.
Trust me, like any company, Questrade wants more clients, so they’ve made their sign up process seamless and very user friendly.
If I can do it, you won’t have any problem with it.
If you do run into any issues, call their 1-888 support line, they’ll be happy to help.
But again – Sign up from their homepage, fill out some information, wait a few days, start investing.
To conclude, if you want to start investing on your own, I strongly recommend Questrade as an online brokerage.
For the reasons listed above, I personally think Questrade is the best online brokerage available to North Americans today.
As mentioned many times, I’ve been using Questrade for years and I’ve had a great experience with them.
Honestly, I have no complaints whatsoever.
I know this is a big decision, but don’t stress yourself out with it. If you try it but don’t love it, no big deal, withdraw your money and try something else.
Anyways,I really hope this information helps! If you have any questions about Questrade or anything discussed above, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org