Let’s face it – there are a lot of questions to ask before parking your hard-earned money with an online investment service and trusting it to execute trades on your behalf and help your portfolio grow. You may want to know about fees, historic performance and the degree of support that will be available to you. There’s another question you should probably ask first: is it safe? Unfortunately, in the online world it’s a necessary question to ask when considering a new investment service.
Is M1 Finance Legitimate?
If the option you’re exploring is M1 Finance, there’s a clear answer – yes, it’s definitely safe. Your money will be secure and you will have access to tools to help you increase your portfolio’s value. There’s no question that this Chicago-based firm is the real deal. It has been operating since 2015 and currently has $6 billion under management, very reassuring data points that should help you answer the critical question is M1 Finance safe?
For even further peace of mind, consider that M1 Finance is actually insured through the Securities Investor Protection Corporation, an insurance service that has been covering investors for more than 50 years. It is also insured through FDIC., the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Just be aware that these kinds of insurance products are meant to protect you in case the firm goes bankrupt or cannot provide you the cash that is in your account, and is not related to covering any losses that come about as a result of your investment decisions.
That should serve to reassure even the most cautious investor, so it may make sense to consider signing up for M1 Finance and enjoying a year of their premium service M1 Plus for free.
Will My Money Be Secure?
We have already established that your money will be safe from fraud, theft and the many other problems that can cause people to be skeptical of trying new investment platforms. Simply put, the service is real – your assets are safe. But there’s another question altogether that you need to consider: will M1 finance give you access to investment opportunities that will protect the value of your portfolio?
On this question, there are a lot of reasons to be optimistic about M1 Finance. It offers a wide range of services that should put you in a position to set your portfolio up for growth. At core it offers a robo-advisor service where you have the option to customize your portfolio as much as you want, meaning that you can rely on their experts’ opinions to guide your portfolio and add in some of your own preferences as well.
The main way through which it achieves this is by offering ‘pies.’ In short, a pie is a segment of your portfolio. In the real world, pieces are cut into slices – and on M1, the slices of each of your investment pies are the individual assets that they are made of. You could have a pie of stocks, and select the individual stocks that will make up the slices of the pie. This allows you to set high-level architecture for your portfolio while customizing the individual assets with it. If you prefer to be more hands off, you can also select M1’s own pies that have been designed to achieve certain investment goals, such as an aggressive growth strategy.
While M1 allows you to invest in stocks, ETFs, and bonds, one product that won’t make it into your portfolio or your pies are mutual funds – they are not offered by M1.
Can I Afford M1 Finance?
Beyond portfolio management and performance, another factor to consider when deciding if an investment service is safe for your own goals and needs is the fees. Sometimes fees can be so high that they will eat into your returns and you’ll be left wondering if you’ve picked the right place to keep your money.
That shouldn’t be the case with M1 Finance. In fact, with their basic plan, you can pretty much guarantee it won’t be – it has 0% in management fees, a rarity in today’s online investment world. Other products that M1 offers, including a borrowing program and a checking account service, carry fees, but these are generally competitive and disclosed up front.
One way to reduce fees that you pay on M1 services is through upgrading to M1 Plus. While some premium investment services can cost hundreds of dollars a month, M1 Plus does not fall in this category – it only costs $125 per year, with the first year free for new users. M1 Plus subscribers will enjoy lower fees on borrowing (2% instead of 3.5%) and get increased cashback options and ATM fee reimbursements.
M1 Finance – A Safe and Secure Option
Hopefully you will have the confidence to go forward with M1 Finance knowing that is a safe investment option. We already know that it is an insured and legitimate service. While there is no guarantee in the world of investing, M1’s mixture of robo-advisor and customizable services, plus its extremely low fees, should make it an option you can feel safe investing your money with.