Betterment Review: Automatic Investing for Self-Employed Freelancers

Want to learn how to save for retirement in a non-complicated but effective way? And without paying tons of fees? Betterment allows you to control your own investing and retirement savings in an easy and smart way. Try it out for free!

According to the Retirement Confidence Survey, more than half of American workers have less than $25,000 in retirement savings. With a number this low, you’ll be lucky to pay your expenses for a year after you’ve retired. And if you have debt, you’ll likely have to come out of retirement to find a job.

Eeeek! That’s not what you want to do after you’ve worked hard for 40+ years. Yes, investing can be intimidating.

  • Which stocks should you choose?
  • Should you even invest in individual stocks?
  • Mutual funds are a thing, right?
  • Wait, what are these fees for?
  • Is this really going to grow to a respectable amount so you can retire one day?
  • What if you can’t retire?

While all those questions need to be answered, they don’t excuse either of us from saving for our futures. We can’t just skip saving for retirement altogether.

Thankfully, you don’t have to be an investing expert to save for your future. If you’re a beginner then you’ll want to read my honest Betterment review.

All you need is as little as $10, and your personal information, to open a free account.

What is Betterment?

Betterment is a web-based investment managing company that utilizes Modern Portfolio Theory to manage its users’ portfolios. It invests your money in ETFs (exchange-traded funds) that offer low-risk for maximum return. These investments have been chosen based on decades of research and historical analysis.

All you have to do is choose an allocation between stocks and bonds, based on how risky you want to be (or how conservative). And if you’re not sure, there’s already a default set for those who want a completely hands-off experience.

I’ve talked about Betterment before, and how I use it for my Roth IRA account. They offer IRAs as well as taxable accounts. So whichever you choose, you’ll get the diversification and balance between risk and reward without having to do the research yourself.

This was a huge selling point for me when I opened my investing and IRA accounts over two years ago. I wanted great returns, but I was too nervous to choose my own investments. As you’ll see in a bit, I managed to make great returns without exerting any effort.

Betterment returns I’ve earned

Obviously, I can’t guarantee your returns, but I’ve had great success since I started using Betterment. See for yourself!

betterment returns graph

With a 90/10% stock and bonds allocation, I’ve seen 25.6% returns on my Roth IRA and 43.4% on my regular investing account for a total average of 40.2% returns on my investments since 2011. Not too bad for something that took absolutely no effort on my part!

I just opened the accounts and have made consistent contributions each month since then. Sometimes my deposits have been $25 (while I was paying off debt) and sometimes they are the maximum $416 a month.

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Your future Betterment account

If you want returns like mine, then it’s time to open your own account! What have you got to lose?

You can fund it with any amount you choose (there is no minimum balance) and pick your stocks/bonds allocation. I chose 90% stocks and 10% bonds because I’m 30 and I have plenty of time to recover from any market downturns.

So my risk tolerance is quite high.

Betterment Roth IRA balance target

Then once you have your risk profile complete, it’s time to set up automatic deposits on a weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, bi-monthly, or yearly basis — whatever you choose.

After you’ve set up your account, you can set different types of goals — like saving for retirement, a house, a wedding and more. A “target” goal will appear and let you know if you’re on track of off track to reach your goal based on your age and how much you’re currently saving.

I’m currently off track for hitting my Roth IRA goal because I’m focusing on building my business, increasing my revenue and getting my finances back on track since quitting my job last year.

However, if I needed help getting back on track, Betterment offers suggestions to reach my retirement goals.

Betterment pricing and features

Betterment is a desirable investment option not only because it is hands-off, but also because it has very low fees compared to similar services. I used to have a managed fund account with Edward Jones, but I closed that (due to the $40 a year + 2% commission) and rolled over all my Roth IRA funds to Betterment.

Why? Because with Betterment, fees range from 0.15-0.35% depending on your balance and deposit amounts. If your balance is less than $10,000 and you deposit less than $100 a month, your flat fee will be $3/month.

betterment fees

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And what’s more, if you try Betterment today, you can open an account for FREE. Then, depending on how much you transfer you could qualify for several bonus free months! Check out the chart below.

Betterment free bonus

Open a FREE account with Betterment

Betterment is a great option for beginner investors, or those who are more hands-off, and simply want a way to save for their future goals. To open your IRA or taxable account today, click the button below.

Sign up takes less than 60 seconds and you can check “saving for the future” off your list of goals. Not only will you be on your way to effortless investing in a matter of minutes, but you could qualify for tax savings and start earning interest well above the industry average!

I personally trust and use Betterment as a self-employed business owner and have seen awesome results. Don’t believe me, check out their service for yourself!

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[If you sign up to try Betterment I’ll get a small cut, that helps keep this site going, but it won’t cost you anything extra. I only recommend products and services that I personally use.]
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