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We might be compensated by one of our IRA partners for an account you open through our platform. This helps us keep the rollover service free, but it never impacts the fees you’ll pay on your new account. We only win if you do, and our job is to help you simplify your retirement accounts. We also help people who already have an IRA account even though we might receive no compensation in these situations—because it’s just the right thing to do!

Best IRA Accounts and Providers of 2024

Capitalize is here to help you navigate different IRA providers and discover which IRA account could be the best fit for you: Best Robo-Advisor IRAsBest Self-Directed IRAsBest Traditional IRAsBest Roth IRAs.

Updated on June 6, 2024

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How to Choose the Best IRA Account for Your Retirement Savings

Choosing the best IRA for you is crucial for maximizing your retirement savings and reaching your financial goals. If you're looking at opening an IRA, there are a few things to consider, including account features, fees and expenses.

Determine your retirement goals

Everyone has different retirement goals and needs. A Roth IRA might work best for those who think they'll be in a higher tax bracket come retirement. Traditional IRAs are an option for those who earn too much to contribute directly to a Roth, or who expect to pay a lower tax rate in the future. If you're self-employed and want to maximize your retirement savings, a SEP or SIMPLE IRA might make sense. In any case, having an understanding of your goals is a great first step to figuring out which IRA is best for you.

Consider your current financial situation

Along with your goals, you also need to assess where you're at today. For example, if you out-earn the income eligibility limits, you may not be able to contribute directly to a Roth IRA. Additionally, depending on your budget and expenses, you may not be able to afford to contribute up to the full annual contribution limit.

Evaluate your risk tolerance

All investments come with risk, but only you can decide how much risk is acceptable. Riskier investments sometimes lead to greater rewards, but they come with the chance of higher losses, too. Take some time to determine how you want to invest your money and what investments your IRA provider offers. Most investment firms let you invest your IRA money in individual stocks and bonds, ETFs and mutual funds to build diversification.

Research and compare different IRA account providers

There are many providers out there claiming to offer the best IRA accounts. Do the research to find the provider that offers the right product at the lowest fees, all with great customer service and a trustworthy reputation.

Seek advice from a financial advisor

If you find yourself lost in the weeds or you want a better view of your situation, consider chatting with a financial advisor. A good financial advisor can help you pick the best IRA account for your needs and build a diversified portfolio. They can also help you create a comprehensive retirement plan, answer financial planning questions, and help you understand what future retirement distributions would look like with a more hands-on approach.

Fund your IRA with a 401(k) rollover. We'll do all the work.

Top Picks

Betterment logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: Betterment offers an automated IRA as the largest independent online financial advisor, and pioneered "set-it-and-forget-it" portfolios for a low-fee.
Commissions: $4/month for balances under $20,000, and 0.25% annual fee for balances over $20,000. You can also choose to upgrade to Betterment's premium plan with a $100,000 minimum balance which adds 0.15% to the management fee.
Limitations: Betterment does not have physical locations like some legacy providers, but they do have knowledgeable and responsive customer service online. Access to human financial advisors is only available through their Premium plan, or through purchase of an advice package for the Digital plan.
Access to Research: Yes - you can buy a consultation ($299) or pay a higher annual fee (0.40%) for unlimited access on an ongoing basis.
SoFi logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: SoFi offers a self-directed IRA that lets you buy stocks and ETFs with no commissions and a free financial advisory service to help you meet financial goals.
Commissions: Trade stocks and ETFs commission-free and pay no SoFi management fees on professionally managed portfolios. Other fees may apply.
Limitations: While SoFi does a lot right, it does have its limitations. Namely, the SoFi platform doesn’t offer tax-loss harvesting, which can help investors lower their overall tax burden and increase their returns. Furthermore, uninvested funds don’t earn interest on the SoFi invest platform, but the company does offer a savings account feature with higher-than-average yields.
Access to Research: Limited: some market data but no third-party research.
SoFi logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: SoFi offers hands-off approach with an automate IRA. Enjoy a low, $1 account minimum and no annual management fee with access to Certified Financial Planners in a user-friendly robo-advisor platform.
Commissions: 0%
Limitations: The SoFi Invest Automated account has the same limitations as other digital, managed accounts – you won’t be able to really change the portfolio allocations across investment options much, though that’s best if you want to outsource your retirement fund money management. They also don’t have physical branches so if that’s important to you then you’re best off with a slightly older brand.
Access to Research: Yes - SoFi has certified financial professionals on staff that you'll get access to.
Charles Schwab logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: An easy-to-use, low-cost trading account from the broker that pioneered low-commission trades.
Commissions: $0 online trades for stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs)
Limitations:

Charles Schwab does not offer direct investments in cryptocurrency. This probably won’t be a limitation investors looking to trade more traditional asset classes, though. Additionally, Charles Schwab offers cryptocurrency-related mutual funds and ETFs.

Additionally, its 0.45% interest rate on uninvested cash is lower than some other similar brokerages; while there are options to increase this rate, investors must opt into them.

Access to Research: Good: market data and some third-party research on stocks, mutual funds & markets (e.g. Morningstar, Credit Suisse, Argus).
Charles Schwab logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: An automated IRA with no management fee and a wide range of portfolio options.
Commissions: 0%
Limitations:

A Schwab robo-advisor portfolio doesn’t offer socially responsible asset allocation options. It also requires a higher account minimum of $50,000 for a tax-loss harvesting service.

Access to Research: Only if you have more than $25,000 to invest, and for an extra fee of $30/month.
Robinhood logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: Robinhood offers a low-cost IRA with a 1% match on eligible contributions and allows users to craft their own portfolios or get a professionally recommended portfolio.
Commissions: $0 online trades for stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs). Other fees may apply.
Limitations:

Robinhood doesn’t offer investment in certain types of asset classes that may be attractive to investors, such as fractional shares, and there are no physical branch locations at which to receive customer service; you must log in and request a callback or email support.

The recommended portfolio is a one-time-only event. Recurring investments are at the sole discretion of the customer. Retirement recommendations are not available to Massachusetts residents.

Access to Research: Good: Robinhood offers advanced charts to visualize, research, and analyze investment options. Robinhood’s portfolio building tools also offer useful information on investment choices
M1 Finance logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: M1 offers a self-directed IRA with an easy-to-use interface, the ability to customize your portfolio (including access to cryptocurrency), and low fees.
Commissions: M1 offers $0-commission online trades for stocks, exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and cryptocurrency. As of May 15, 2024, clients who do not reach a minimum value of $10,000 at least one day during each billing cycle will be subject to a $3 monthly fee for using the platform, although there's still no advisory fee, specifically. (Users who have an active M1 Personal Loan are exempt from the $3 monthly fee.)
Limitations: M1 offers an exceptional degree of portfolio customization to its clients, but it’s important to understand that, with only one trading window per day for most users, M1 is not a day-trading platform. However, since most retirement savers aren’t actively trading (or “day trading”) in their accounts, this isn’t a problem; but if you happen to be dead set on making multiple trades a day in your IRA, M1 may not be the best choice for you.
Access to Research: Good; Includes access to market and individual stock news, screening tools for stocks and ETFs.
Titan logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: A one-stop shop for investors seeking a diversified portfolio consisting of stocks, bonds, and alternative assets such as real estate, private credit, and venture capital — with options for both managed and automated investment strategies.
Commissions: 0%-0.9%
Limitations: While Titan offers a diverse range of investment options, it may not be the best fit for investors who desire full control to pick their own individual stocks and other assets, as the platform focuses on creating personalized portfolios based on clients’ unique circumstances. Additionally, Titan may not be suitable for those who want access to options trading, as the platform currently does not support this type of investment activity.
Access to Research: Clients have unrestricted access to licensed advisors, who can offer tailored investment guidance
AltoIRA logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: Alto IRA offers a self-directed IRA with more than than 200 coins and other alternative investments including venture capital, fine art, regenerative agriculture, private equity, and more.
Commissions: Crypto IRA: 1% Trade Fee for all transactions; No Custody or Account Fees
Alto IRA: Total invested capital $0.01 - $29,999.99: $37.50 per quarter; $30,000+: $100 per quarter
Limitations:

Alto enables you to invest easily in private assets through an IRA and is subject to all restrictions associated with IRC 4975 (c)(3), and IRC 408 (e)(2)(A), which generally restricts investments in IRAs between parent-child familial relationships, in addition to investment in S-Corp stocks, and direct investments in collectibles that the IRA owner personally maintains. For now, you cannot invest in publicly traded assets like stocks and bonds.

Furthermore, Alto does not offer account types outside of IRAs – though as an IRA provider, it offers a range of IRA types.

Access to Research: Good: access to research on private investments through Alto partners like AngelList and Forge.
E*TRADE logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: E*TRADE Core Portfolios is a great solution for those looking for an automated approach to retirement planning with the ability to incorporate socially conscious investments in your portfolio for no additional cost.
Commissions: 0.30% of your assets per year (e.g. $30 per year if you had $10,000 in assets)
Limitations: While E*TRADE offers diversified investment portfolios, you won’t be able to invest in individual stocks, mutual funds, REITs, private equity, crypto, or Forex assets.
Access to Research: While no advisor is assigned to the account, users can call to consult a specialist, some of whom are Certified Financial Planners.
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E*TRADE logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: E*TRADE offers a self-directed IRA with an easy-to-use interface complete with integrated educational and research tools, and free trades on stocks, ETFs, and mutual funds.
Commissions: $0 online trades for stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs)
Limitations: While E*Trade offers a comprehensive product that can benefit investors at many different stops along their journeys, it does have some limitations. Namely, certain investment options, like cryptocurrency, forex trades, and fractional shares, are not available through the E*Trade platform. Additionally, its Core Portfolios account carries a higher minimum account balance than some of its competitors.
Access to Research: Great: market data and third-party research on stocks, mutual funds & markets (e.g. Thomson Reuters, Credit Suisse, Argus). In addition, E*TRADE offers resources for beginner investors.
TradeStation logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: TradeStation offers a self-directed IRA with a sophisticated trading platform for advanced investors who value screening & data, and want to trade widely.
Commissions: $0 online trades for stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs)
Limitations: TradeStation doesn’t currently require an account minimum to open or maintain an IRA account. Said another way, there is a $0 account minimum, which is fairly standard for self-directed IRA accounts.
Access to Research: Good: lots of data and charting tools, less access to fundamental third-party research.
BitcoinIRA logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: Bitcoin IRA offers a self-directed IRA with options to invest in both cryptocurrency and gold, as well as opportunities to earn interest on your assets, including cash.
Commissions: Initial deposit fee: 5.99%; Transaction fees: 2% of all trades; Monthly account fee: 0.08%
Limitations:

Obviously, for those who are interested in funding their IRA accounts primarily with crypto, Bitcoin IRA is a standout. But for those who are interested in padding out their crypto IRAs with other types of assets, like stocks, bonds, or mutual funds, Bitcoin IRA may not be the first choice. Additionally, Bitcoin IRA doesn’t offer access to other types of alternative assets like venture capital or real estate. The company is focused specifically on the crypto IRA, so those looking for conventional IRAs will need to look elsewhere.

Additionally, cryptocurrency is well known for having substantial risks and unpredictable market behaviors. Given the importance of retirement funds specifically, investors should proceed with some caution and a lot of research.

Access to Research: Good; Bitcoin IRA offers various reports (on web and mobile) and allows you to set up advanced charts and price alerts which is especially useful for crypto trading.
Wealthfront logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: A low-fee automated portfolio with a user interface that's simple and easy to use.
Commissions: 0.25%
Limitations: Wealthfront only allows investors to buy individual stocks and fractional shares of individual stocks if they have a stock investing account. In addition, it doesn’t offer access to a human advisor, so it’s not ideal for people who aren’t comfortable with a completely automated investment account.
Access to Research: Not at this time.
Ally logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: Ally offers a self-directed IRA with an easy-to-use trading interface at a digital-first institution — with low fees for stocks, ETFs, and even options trading.
Commissions: $0 online trades for stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs)
Limitations:

As mentioned above, Ally’s trading tools could have better third-party research and educational tool integration, like advanced charting tools, to help investors make the most of their investment choices.

Also, Ally robo portfolios do not come with automatic tax loss harvesting.

Access to Research: Good: market data and some third-party research on stocks (e.g. Morningstar, CFRA).
Vanguard logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: Vanguard offers an IRA comprised mainly of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) with low fees and great educational resources.
Commissions: $0 online trades for stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs)
Limitations: Vanguard’s investment options are a bit limited if you want to trade things other than ETFs and mutual funds. In addition, their online trading platform has limited capability and doesn’t support basic functionality like access to real-time data, which can be challenging for experienced investors looking to take advantage of market fluctuations.
Access to Research: Limited: some market data but not much third-party research.
Merrill Lynch logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: Merrill offers a self-directed IRA through a strong trading platform with great access to research and data that's integrated with Bank of America.
Commissions: $0 online trades for stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs)
Limitations: Merrill Edge does not offer fractional shares, futures, foreign exchange (forex) trading, or cryptocurrency. While there are no annual account fees for a self-directed Merrill Edge account, for those interested in Merrill Edge investment advisory services, discounts for higher tiers of advisement are reserved for Bank of America customers.
Access to Research: Good: access to extensive Bank of America research and some third-party research.
Merrill Lynch logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: Merrill offers a simple, automated IRA with customizable portfolios and potential fee discounts for existing Bank of America and Merrill Lynch customers.
Commissions: 0.45%
Limitations: Compared to other digital-first providers like Betterment and SoFi, Merrill’s platform isn’t as intuitive to navigate. As mentioned, a Merrill Guided IRA also comes with a fee, while a few other providers don’t charge a fee for similar services. Finally, a Merrill Guided Investing IRA doesn’t offer tax-loss harvesting.
Access to Research: Only if you have more than $20,000 to invest and are willing to pay a higher fee (0.85%).
Fidelity logo
Self-Directed IRA
Best if you want: Fidelity offers a self-directed IRA at the largest provider of retirement accounts in the US with helpful customer support.
Commissions: 0%
Limitations: Fidelity’s fees, while generally low, are a little higher on money market mutual funds than some peers. Since a money market mutual fund is where the extra cash in your account is held, this could negatively impact your return on investment.
Access to Research: Not at this time.
Ally logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: Ally offers an automated IRA as a with no annual management fee, 24/7 customer support, and a range of other financial products (incl. bank accounts & mortgages).
Commissions: 0%
Limitations: Ally doesn’t currently offer tax-loss harvesting on their robo-advisor IRAs. They also have a higher account minimum if you wish to get investment advice from a human advisor. If you ever end up closing your IRA with Ally, you’ll be charged a $25 fee.
Access to Research: Not at this time, though you'll get access to Ally's call center support.
Fidelity logo
Automated IRA
Best if you want: Fidelity Go offers an automated IRA as one of the biggest brands in finance with solid customer support, reasonable fees, and no account minimums.
Commissions: 0.35%
Limitations: Your portfolio will mainly have Fidelity Flex mutual funds in it, but Fidelity’s 0.35% fee now covers the cost of investing in those funds so you’ll only pay one all-in fee. For those looking to more actively invest in a larger range of asset classes, including options trading, margin trading, cryptocurrency, or fractional shares, Fidelity may not offer the desired level of customization and flexibility. Its lack of tax-loss harvesting as part of its tax strategy may reduce investor returns.
Access to Research: Not at this time.
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Best IRA accounts FAQs

How do I compare IRAs?

The best IRA for your situation depends entirely on your personal financial situation. When comparing IRAs, look at each option’s short- and long-term benefits, and whether you plan to make pre- or post-tax contributions.

As with any major financial decision, consider making an appointment with a qualified financial advisor (CFP) or tax professional (CPA) who offers broad financial planning guidance. You’ll want to make sure that your IRA fits into your overall investment strategy.

What types of IRA accounts are there?

Most people who open an IRA choose either a Traditional IRA or Roth IRA. However, other options, such as a Crypto IRA, also exist. Most, if not all IRA brokerage accounts offer access to popular low-cost index fund investments.

Are IRAs the best savings account?

IRAs are an excellent savings account for anyone wanting to be more hands-on with retirement investing. But they’re not the only account available, so be sure to investigate all of your options with regard to your personal finances as a whole — and always be aware of any account fees you’re charged.