When it comes to choosing a broker, there are many questions to ask before making a decision. In today’s world, there are quite a few brokers to choose from, and the cut throat competition in the industry has made it beneficial for us as clients.

Following trend with the rest of the world of investing, nothing is truly black and white, and the same is true when it comes to choosing a broker. There is not one broker that is necessarily the “best”. They all offer similar services, it is just a matter of choosing which one is the best fit for YOU.

If you are looking to receive support and use powerful trading/investing tools, then I recommend you get a regular online broker. If you don’t need tools, trading platforms, or support, and you are just looking for a broker to fill your orders, then you are probably better off getting a discount broker.

Some of the things you need to consider before choosing a broker:

  • How many trades are you going to make on a weekly or monthly basis?
  • How much are you willing to pay in commissions?
  • How much support will you need with your investments?
  • What are your investing goals?
  • What types of tools and software will you need?

If you are unsure about most or all of the questions above, then I recommend you start with my broker of choice and take it from there. Opening an account is free!

Below is a short list of some of the brokers available. The first one is my recommended online broker and the second is my recommended discount broker.

Recommended Online Broker

td ameritrade logo




My broker of choice is TDA. I have been a client of TDA for some time now, and I have never had a complaint. If I ever had a problem they resolved it on the same day. If you want to speak with someone directly they always have representatives available that are knowledgeable and helpful. They also communicate efficiently through email. Their commissions are slightly higher than other online brokers, but it is a price you pay for impeccable service.

My favorite thing about TDA is their trading platform “Think or Swim”, which is a software platform that you receive with your account at no additional cost. If you plan on using your smart phone to make trades, they also have an award winning mobile app.

As part of your account you will receive free, independent 3rd party research reports, stock screeners, ideas, and many more valuable tools to help you succeed.

Finally, they do not require a minimum deposit, and at the time of writing they are offering 60 days of free trading! Because of my satisfaction with TDA, all of my lessons and screen shots are from me using Think or Swim. It will be much easier for you to follow along if you use the same software as I do, and it will not cost you anything but 15 minutes of your time.  Go ahead and try it out to form your own opinion. After all, I am training you to be a freethinker!

  • Stock Trades=$9.99
  • Options Base=$9.99
  • Options Contracts=$0.75
  • Minimum Deposit=$0

Recommended Discount Broker

options house logo




Options House, in my opinion, is the best discount broker in the industry. Barron’s voted them one of the best brokers for options traders. They are also great for stocks with a flat rate $3.95 commission on stocks. I do have a business account with options house and it really is a great brokerage firm. Their trading platform is pretty good; it’s not the best in the industry but it definitely gets the job done. Don’t be fooled by the name “Options” house because it’s NOT just for options traders. Don’t be discouraged if you only plan to trade stocks, they are great for stock traders! They have been recommended by a lot of investors and have great reviews. They also have a really good mobile app if you like using your smartphone to place orders.

  • Stock Trades=$3.95
  • Options Base=$8.50
  • Options Contracts=$0.15
  • Minimum Deposit=$1000

Other good online brokers to consider:

Etrade Logo




  • Stock Trades=$9.99
  • Options Base=$9.99
  • Options Contracts=$0.75
  • Minimum Deposit=$500


Scottrade Logo





  • Stock Trades=$7.00
  • Options Base=$7.00
  • Options Contracts=$1.25
  • Minimum Deposit=$500


Fidelity Logo




  • Stock Trades=$7.95
  • Options Base=$7.95
  • Options Contracts=$0.75
  • Minimum Deposit=$0


Charles Schwab logo



  • Stock Trades=$8.95
  • Options Base=$8.95
  • Options Contracts=$0.75
  • Minimum Deposit=$1000


Merrill Edge Logo



  • Stock Trades=$6.95
  • Options Base=$6.95
  • Options Contracts=$0.75
  • Minimum Deposit=$2000