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How to Withdraw and Transfer Assets from Acorns to Any Broker.

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Acorns is a robo-advisor that makes it easy for anyone to invest and build wealth. In fact, you can start investing with as little as $5. Acorns is a good investing platform for any investor who wants automation, and lacks the investing knowledge to tread the course alone. However, there may be instances where you may decide to fire your robo-advisor and take matters into your own hands. If you have reached this stage with Acorns, here's the best way to go about making the transition to another broker, such as Fidelity, Vanguard, Schwab, etc.

Assets Transfer vs Funds Withdrawal

You can go about severing ties ties with Acorns in one of two ways: asset transfer to your new broker or funds withdrawal to your checking account. Let's go through both steps.

A. Assets transfer from Acorns

Transferring assets from your Acorns account to your new broker is a tedious, costly, and inconvenient process. Once you submit paperwork to start the assets transfer, your new broker will notify Acorns of your intent to transfer. This has to go through the Automated Customer Account Transfer Service (ACATS). The time frame for this process varies. After Acorns receives the paperwork from your new broker, it will then contact you via email and notifies you of its fine print/Program Agreement. Here's a sample email: 

Hi, [First Name],

This email is confirmation of receipt of your recent Non-ACAT transfer request to transfer assets from Acorns Securities, LLC to Fidelity. Please keep in mind that Acorns Securities, LLC can only transfer whole shares, as stated in our Program Agreement, to process asset transfer requests (section B5). The remaining balance will be liquidated to return to your connected checking account.

Please also note that Acorns Securities, LLC charges a $50 per ETF fee, as stated in our Program Agreement, to process asset transfer requests (section 2.2). The total fee for your transfer request would be $250.00 [Ouch!] as you currently hold whole positions in 5 ETF(s).

Acorns Securities, LLC

​Assets transfer from Acorns is expensive. With 5 ETFs in your account, you will pay $250. 6 ETFs will sink your account by $300, while 7 ETFs on a conservative portfolio will bilk your account of $350! Funds withdrawal may be your best bet.

 2. Funds Withdrawal from Acorns

Instead of transferring assets, Acorns will give you the option of withdrawing your funds and depositing them to your linked checking account. The robo-advisor will then ask you to confirm whether you want to proceed with asset transfer and agree to pay the ETF transfer fees.

You also have the option to withdraw the funds from your Acorns account to return to your checking account and you will be able to re-invest those funds in a different brokerage account if you choose. There is no fee to withdraw funds.
Please confirm, in response to this email, if you would like to proceed with the asset transfer request for a total fee of $250.00.

Acorns Securities, LLC

​If you reply that you want to proceed with the transfer, Acorns will discourage such a move, due to the significant cost that you will incur.

Hi [First name],

Thank you for your reply. Please note that we would not recommend proceeding with the asset transfer as the fee would be significant in comparison to your Acorns account balance. It would make more sense to make a withdrawal and transfer the funds to your checking account with no fee.

Acorns Securities, LLC

The withdrawal process

Once you have decided that withdrawing your funds to your checking account makes the most financial sense, the process is fairly easy and straightforward. This process takes anywhere from 3-6 days.

  1. Log in to your Acorns account and begin the withdrawal process. Once you have started the process, Acorns will start selling the ETFs in your account.
  2. Acorns will transfer those funds to your checking account.

Re-investing your funds with your new broker

Once your funds have been deposited into your check account, you are now able to transfer those funds to your new broker and re-invest them to meet your investing needs. Use these funds with your new broker to create a well-balanced portfolio composed of all the major asset classes.

The bottom line

Acorns is one of the best robo-advisors in the investing universe, especially for the rookie investor. When the time comes to divorce Acorns, you have two choices: assets transfer vs funds withdrawal. Directly transferring asset from Acorns to another broker will cost you $50 per ETF. Contrarily, withdrawing those funds to your checking account and then re-investing them will cost you nothing. 

Please share this article. Here are a few other articles you may find useful: How investors make money in the stock market | Stocks vs. index funds vs. ETFs: differences and similarities | I heeded Warren Buffett's advice. I can't stop winning | A simple index fund and ETF quiz | 4 smart ways to both invest and pay down student debt2 simple reasons why you may not need bonds in your portfolio.

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Saturday, 25 January 2020

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