Get started with your Altruist account

We use Altruist to manage your investments. It’s an easy, low-fee platform with commission-free trading and other useful tools that your BTF advisor will use to invest your assets, rebalance them, harvest tax losses to save you money, and keep you on track for your goals.

Your advisor will set you up in Altruist and you’ll receive emails for each account set up on your behalf. Click the ‘Get Started’ link in the email to set up your Altruist username and password that you can use to add your bank account, beneficiaries, and change your address or password. You can also check your investments, view recent activity in your account, etc.

Add your bank account that you’ll use to transfer money to Altruist

After you set up your login credentials, either go straight to this link or navigate to your profile (top-right circle with you initials) and then hit ‘Settings’:

Click the ‘Accounts’ tab, and scroll down to ‘Add bank’, then input your login credentials to link your bank.

Using your bank’s online login is the best way to link it, but if you don’t have an online login for your bank, or don’t remember it and don’t want to reset it, then you can scroll down on the ‘Select your bank’ screen and click ‘Link with account numbers’ instead.

This method is slower since you’ll have to go to your bank account a couple days later, write down the two small deposits used to verify the account, and then log back into Altruist to ‘verify’ your account.

Add your beneficiaries

From the same ‘Accounts’ screen, click ‘Add beneficiary’ then ‘Create new’ to create BOTH your Primary and Contingent beneficiaries. Most married couples choose each other as 100% for their Primary layer, and then use a Trust that benefits their minor child(ren) as 100% for the Contingent layer. You can also name your kids directly if they’re 18+ or until your advisor gets you set up with a Trust (highly recommended for anyone with children under 18!)

You can also name a charity if you wish. One current annoyance is that you’re limited to 20 characters to name your charity/trust, so just abbreviate as best you can. Choose Relationship = ‘Entity/Charity’ for a trust or charity.

If you have multiple accounts, just make sure you’re linked both your bank account(s) and your beneficiaries to all of your accounts. You may need to do this in the future as well if your advisor opens new accounts for you later.

Approve money transfer authorization

Your advisor will send you a ‘transfer authorization’ via email once you’ve added a bank account. This allows your advisor to transfer funds between your bank account(s) and your Altruist accounts when you would like to invest or cash out.

Click ‘View’ and then approve once you log into your Altruist account.

You are also free to ‘add funds’ to deposit or withdraw money to/from your Altruist account while you’re logged in. It’s easiest to transfer funds electronically, but you can also mail checks or wire the money:

Approve transfers of your accounts to Altruist

Your advisor will help you move your money at other firms to Altruist. Just approve these requests as they come in to your email by clicking ‘Review’, logging in to Altruist, then approving the transfer.

Your Altruist dashboard should show you any pending transfers you need to approve, so check there to make sure you’ve done everything you need to.

Author: Ward Williams

Ward is an independent financial advisor at Better Tomorrow Financial. He started working as an independent investment advisor in 2009.

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