- Like most millennials, I had several retirement accounts from past employers.
- I chose to take all of my accounts to Wealthsimple because of its socially responsible investing options and easy-to-understand fee structure.
- My transfer of a SEP IRA took just under three weeks. Wealthsimple advertises this process as taking three to five weeks.
- Wealthsimple makes opening a new IRA a simple, quick process. See if Wealthsimple is right for you »
My career, like many millennials’, has been spent across many companies, agencies, and organisations. Recently, I sat back looking at my early career, and came to the realisation that I had left a trail of retirement accounts along my path.
Besides that, I realised when I was filing my taxes this year that because of the way the new Qualified Business Income Deduction is calculated, I personally would benefit from putting money in a Traditional IRA over a SEP.
I needed better organisation and a simpler plan.
The importance of Socially Responsible Investing
As I created my new plan, I knew I wanted Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) to lie at the centre of it. While it is true that SRI index funds are more managed than your typical S&P index fund and could therefore theoretically underperform the S&P index, the idea that profits should be paramount is a logical fallacy.
It’s great for your investments to track the economy, but there won’t be an economy if we don’t reduce and actively work to reverse the damage done to our planet.
I view investing for retirement as a wise act – one full of hope. But I’d like to participate in a way that compounds the problem as little as possible. Ideally, I’d like to participate in a way that actively fixes things.
Transferring my accounts to Wealthsimple
I eventually decided on Wealthsimple as my robo-adviser. Like most Americans, I am behind on my retirement savings, though I am trying to change that. Low barrier-to-entry robo-advisers best suit my current needs despite coming with management fees.
I also liked how Wealthsimple offered an entire portfolio that met its environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) standards and offered straightforward fees.
The first of my accounts that I transferred was a SEP IRA. Filling out the Wealthsimple questionnaire to initiate the process was incredibly simple. I was transferring from another robo-adviser that did not offer socially responsible investing options, so I just went into my account there and pressed a button on that platform, okaying the transfer.
Wealthsimple then notified me that the transfer process could take three to five weeks. My transfer came in just before the three-week mark, and was immediately reinvested according to Wealthsimple’s SRI portfolio algorithm.
Opening a Traditional IRA
Opening a traditional IRA with Wealthsimple was a breeze. I simply had to review some terms and conditions online before being setting up a monthly auto deposit. The investments in my traditional IRA will also meet Wealthsimple’s ESG standards.
There’s no perfect system
So far, I’m very happy with my Wealthsimple experience. While its fees aren’t low, they are encompassing. As Eric Rosenberg reported for Business Insider, “The Basic [Wealthsimple] account charges 0.5% per year on balances up to $US100,000. If you have $US100,000 or more, you qualify for a Black account with a lower 0.4% annual fee.”
It’s easy to understand what you’re paying for, and you have many opportunities to “earn” free account management through referrals, setting up auto deposit, transferring accounts with $US5,000+ in assets, downloading the app, and/or turning on two-step verification.
There will always be an inherent flaw in ESG standards as long as they are not universalized: They can vary from fund to fund. You might be 100% comfortable with the way ESG standards are measured within one fund, but be disappointed in the standards of the next. For now, Wealthsimple best meets my needs out of all the options available to me.
Interested in opening a socially responsible retirement account through Wealthsimple? Check out your options »
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