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I am looking to start a Roth IRA with an online brokerage. I do have a normal taxable account with Ameritrade and I like their low commissions as well as the fact that the service has been good. However, they require $2,000 to start an account (per Customer Service). I have already started a Roth Account for 99 with Janus (wanted a international fund for diversification)and because Ameritrade's requirement would cause me to sail past the Roth contribution limit, I need to find a brokerage with a minimum of 1,000 or less. I am not a heavy trader (LTBH), so low IRA custodial fees are probably the most important criteria. Any suggestions?

Thanks,
Tom
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I'm using Waterhouse for my Roth - no minimums and lots of mutual funds to choose from. But I'm starting by putting money into Rule Maker stocks, then next year trying the Foolish 4 with the next $2000. Trades only $12.

Taylor
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I'm also using Waterhouse for my Roth. Although I thought they did have a minimum for IRAs... but I thought it was something like $100 or $200... no where near $2000. They're very big and have been around for a long time. $12 for online trades, and you still have the flexibility of phone trades ($25, I think) and talking to a person (for $35, I think).
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I started my Roth with Waterhouse with $100. I also have a regular account with them and I am generally pleased with Waterhouse, however they are dragging their feet in sending my certificates to me (I want to start my DRIP's & OCP's). But on the whole, I am quite happy with them.


Best of luck,
Michael
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Mike, you don't have to get the certificates. Waterhouse does something that's almost like a DRP. They'll take your dividends, and they'll use that to buy shares of what you're invested in at no charge to you. However, you can't do optional cash payments without having to incur the commission. That's the catch.
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Try Scottrade. I have both a regular and Roth IRA with them. Trades are cheap, ($7 market, $12 limit) service is good, and there are no fees if you have $2000 minimum.

I recommend them highly.

Z-Bar
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Once upon a time, a Fool once said...

Mike, you don't have to get the certificates. Waterhouse does something that's almost like a DRP. They'll take your dividends, and they'll use that to buy shares of what you're invested in at no charge to you. However, you can't do optional cash payments without having to incur the commission. That's the catch.

True, but when I contact INTC, PFE, & SPG and say, "YO!, I wanna start fee-free OCP's from you rather than paying my broker $12 a pop, they said "HUH?! What? Who are you? We have nothing in your name. Talk to your broker kid, ya bother me."

Of course, when I talk to Waterhouse, they say: "HUH?! What? Who are you? We gave your name to the stocks transfer agent. Talk to them kid, ya bother me."

I guess I shoulda used the Moneypaper.



still not retired,
Michael
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Mike:

Don't despair, everything good takes time. Once the broker gives the information to the transfer agent, it can take awhile to get between points. Patience is the key, and don't forget persistence. I would guess that the transactions are sitting in the middle somewhere still, keep checking and it will work out.

good luck, jenn
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Once you ask for the certificates, you're kind of in a bind. You have to wait until such time as you get them to DRP them.

Personally, I'd rather leave it in Waterhouse and DRP it there. Then, if I saved up enough where the $12 commission wasn't a lot, I'd buy more that way.
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