How to Get Started Rolling Your Old 401(k) into a Roth IRA Online

Written By Mary Beth Eastman
Last updated December 8, 2020

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January 16, 2019

Simple. Thrifty. Living.

An employee sponsored 401(k) is a great investment opportunity that everyone should take advantage of if they have the opportunity. When you change jobs, however, you’ll have to decide what to do with your money. Rolling the money over into an online Roth IRA is a great choice. There are a few steps you’ll need to take to complete the process.

First, find one of the best online IRAs. Do you want a customized portfolio or an all-in-one type of fund? The best IRAs will include reasonable fees, financial planning tools and good customer service. There are many banks, investment firms and companies to choose from when opening an account.

Online Options

A few of the more well-known options include E*Trade, Ally Invest, Vanguard and TD Ameritrade. You can read our Ally Invest review here.

You’ll want to check out the online investing platforms of any Roth IRA you’re considering to see which is the best choice for you. Furthermore, decide if you want to take an active role in your investment choices or basically be a “hands-off” investor.

Secondly, you’ll need to open a Roth IRA before rolling over your money. Opening a Roth IRA online is as simple as opening a checking account at your bank. It normally takes about 15 to 20 minutes to complete the entire process. Whether you’ve chosen an account that is associated with a bank or not, you’ll likely need the following information:

  • Date of birth.
  • Social security number.
  • Bank routing number and account information.
  • Beneficiary for the account.

After you’ve chosen a provider and the account is open you’ll need to decide what you’ll invest in. A few options include mutual funds, stocks and bonds. Real estate investments and CDs are also options. If you have a robo-advisor, your investments will be selected for you.

You’ll need to ask your current 401(k) for a direct rollover. This means instead of sending the money to you, they directly deposit it into the IRA of your choice. To get started, contact an administrator in the human resources department at your prior company.

Once you get your account up and running it is normally easy to maintain. Online IRA’s are a simple and effective way to keep your 401(k) growing after you roll it over. In fact, if you’re asking yourself whether to choose a 401(k) or an IRA, you can have both. There’s no reason not to get started today!

About the Author

Mary Beth Eastman

Mary Beth Eastman serves as the content manager for Simple. Thrifty. Living, where she is dedicated to helping readers use money and credit wisely. Mary Beth believes that access to the right financial information paired with a growth mindset are essential tools for getting out of debt and building wealth. Mary Beth has a degree in Journalism from Bowling Green State University and has focused her 20-year journalism career on putting readers front and center, carefully considering their concerns and presenting information that will help them in their everyday lives. She has won numerous statewide journalism awards. Her writing on personal finance as been featured on numerous websites in addition to Simple. Thrifty. Living, including Huffington Post and Lexington Law blog. Mary Beth resides in Pittsburgh, Pa., with her family and two rescue dogs.

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