Review of online broker OptionsHouse Part I

OptionsHouse is yet another discount broker offering low trade commissions. Even though I like my current broker Scottrade, the commissions were killing me.  I decided to check out OptionsHouse. Here’s a quick review.

Objectives

I’m not a day trader and I could care less about research tools.  Most of the information I need I can get for free online.

What I care about

  • Low cost
  • Reasonably prompt customer service
  • Quick execution
  • No inactivity fees
  • Should provide cost basis for tax purposes
  • Quick ACH turnaround time
  • Must be able to place limit orders

What I don’t care about

  • Fancy tools
  • Options
  • Broker assisted trades
  • Penny stocks

Account application

The application process itself was fairly straigtforward, until OptionsHouse wanted me to mail or fax the application along with ID proof. Information for setting up ACH too has be mailed.  OptionsHouse does reimburse upto $25 if you wire funds.  This is one time only though.

If other brokerages can do this completely online, I don’t know why OptionsHouse wants to make this so complicated. Atleast with Zecco, you had the option of scanning the documents and emailing it to Zecco. With OptionsHouse you can only fax or mail it.I’ve mailed the documents. Will post an update on how that went.  Meanwhile, enjoy the slideshow.  Will give you an idea on what to expect.

Current promotions:

  • 100 commission free trades for 60 days with $3000 account minimum
  • ACAT transfer rebate of upto $100
  • Wire transfer rebate of $25

Walkthrough of account opening process at OptionsHouse

OptionsHouse Account Opening
OptionsHouse Account Opening
Select Account Type
Select Account Type
Provide Personal Information
Provide Personal Information
Save And Continue
Save And Continue
Provide Financial And Employment Information
Provide Financial And Employment Information
Save And Continue
Save And Continue
Terms And Conditions
Terms And Conditions
Submit Application
Submit Application


Update: Options House in 2011, increased it’s trade commissions from $2.95 to $3.95. A positive change for Mac Users is that Options House’s trading screen is now usable on Chrome as well as Safari! Previously, you could only use the trading screen with Firefox (on a Mac).

Stay tuned for part II, once I hear back from OptionsHouse …

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