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401(k) Challenges

The Betterment Rollover: 60 Seconds to a Better Financial Future

Our 60-second rollover process is among the fastest in the industry. Roll over a traditional, Roth, or SEP IRA—and be on the path to a better financial future.


By Jon Stein
CEO & Founder, Betterment  |  Published: January 4, 2016

Data suggests that managed retirement accounts, such as those managed by Betterment, could grow to 43% more than those that aren’t managed.

You also might be paying too much in fees—some financial providers bury fees and conflicts of interest in fine print.

At Betterment, you get low (and transparent) fees, a globally diversified portfolio, and personalized advice to help you reach your goals. These benefits have helped make us the largest automated investment advisor.

If you have an IRA, and you’re managing it on your own, you could be losing money every day.

Data suggests that over 30 years, managed retirement accounts, such as those with Betterment, could grow to 43% more than those that aren’t managed.1 Over 30 years of maxing out your IRA, you could be giving up more than $250,000.

Additionally, if you’re managing your own account, you could be losing money to high fees—and sometimes without even knowing it. Some financial providers deliberately bury certain fees and conflicts of interest in fine print.

We’ve designed Betterment to change all of this.

At Betterment, we manage your account for you, without the hidden fees that may come with traditional accounts. We invest your money in a low-cost, globally diversified portfolio, and we offer personalized advice with only our customers’ best interests in mind.

Our 60-second rollover process is among the fastest in the industry. Roll over a traditional, Roth, or SEP IRA—and be on the path to a better financial future.

Our Mission: Low-Cost Investing and Personalized Advice for Everyone

At Betterment, we believe that everyone has the right to low-cost investing and customer-aligned advice that is tailored to their situation. We offer services that we believe will help make them smarter investors—and ultimately reach their goals.

Personalized Advice

Our advice is what makes us different. We offer personalized, customer-aligned advice that’s tailored to your goals. Using Betterment’s RetireGuide, we’ll tell you how much to save for retirement based on your current age, your desired retirement age, where you plan to retire, and how much you’re saving across all retirement accounts—even those that are outside of Betterment, including your spouse’s holdings. Learn more about our advice.

Globally Diversified Portfolio

IRAs at Betterment are instantly diversified across our global portfolio. We carefully select ETFs across 12 asset classes that are invested in more than 36,000 stocks and bonds from companies and governments in over 100 countries. Because no one can predict how each asset class, country, or company will perform in a given month or year, it’s best to diversify across them all, according to your goals and risk tolerance. This helps to smooth out your returns over time. Learn more about what’s in our portfolio.

Tax-Smart Automation

IRAs already offer a lot of great tax benefits, Betterment’s Tax-Coordinated Portfolio™ (TCP) helps you take full advantage of them. TCP optimizes and automates a strategy called asset location. It starts by placing your assets that will be taxed highly in your IRAs, which have big tax breaks. Then, it places your lower-taxed assets in your taxable accounts.

Our research shows that this strategy can boost after-tax returns by an average of 0.48% each year, which approximately amounts to an extra 15% over 30 years.

Transparent, Low Fees

Our fees are a fraction of the cost of traditional services because of our cutting-edge technology. We are vertically integrated, meaning we are the registered investment advisor (RIA) and the broker-dealer through our affiliated entity, Betterment Securities. That means we handle the investment process from start to finish, allowing us to charge lower fees than traditional investment services, which have to work with and pay third-party custodians. Additionally, all of our fees are completely transparent—we have no hidden costs. Read more about our pricing.

Intuitive Interface + Best-in-Class Customer Support

Before Betterment, there wasn’t an easy, automatic way for people to get advice and invest their money. We built our platform from the ground up to give customers an intuitive interface, designed to lead to better behavior and better expected returns.

We use smarter technology to continually reinvest dividends and deposits so all of your money is working for you. As the asset classes in your portfolio move up and down, we check your portfolio daily and rebalance back to your target allocation if needed. This helps you stay on track to meet your goals.

Roll Over in 60 Seconds

Ready to get on the path to a better financial future? All it takes is 60 seconds. Our rollover team is here seven days a week to help with any questions or issues that come up.

More from Betterment:

1Betterment’s calculation that managed retirement accounts could grow to 43% more assumes 30 years of maxing out an IRA at $5,500 per year with a 9.77% average annualized rate of return for managed account users vs. a 7.85% average annualized rate for those who do not use an investment allocation product (returns data sourced from this article, which examined account performance of participants in certain defined contribution plans during a five year period from 2010 to 2015).

Disclaimer: When deciding whether to rollover a 401(k) account or other retirement account, you should carefully consider your personal situation and preferences. Relevant factors may include that: (i) 401(k) accounts may offer greater protection from creditors than IRAs. (ii) In some cases, the ability to take penalty-free distributions at an earlier age or to defer minimum required distributions. (iii) Some 401(k) accounts may also allow for loans or distributions in a broader set of circumstances than IRAs. (iv) Some 401(k) plans may also offer specific educational and advisory services to participants that are unavailable to some IRAs. (v) Some 401(k) plans may have lower fees and expenses than some IRAs. (vi) Some IRAs may offer a broader range of investment options that some 401(k) plans. (vii) Special tax rules may apply to the rollover of employer securities.

You should research the details of your 401(k) and speak to a tax and other advisors about whether the features of your 401(k) are relevant to your personal situation. The rollover process is currently automated for rollovers from select providers. If you have a provider that is not part of our automated process, you will receive an email with a checklist for completing your rollover to Betterment. In processing you rollover request, Betterment will be acting at your direction. 

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