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  • Avatar DrDebt 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 15
    Joined: 07/07/2017

    I know everyone talks about how good Vanguard is for investment and account options, but has anyone worked with BOA/Merrill Edge? They seem to have low-cost options based on your accounts balance, and many of the Vanguard fund options, as well as their own 529.

    Just curious.

    Thanks!

    #176846 Reply
    Avatar Peds 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 3344
    Joined: 01/08/2016

    i mean i wouldnt give them my money.

    but any commission free, low cost index ETF brokerage is literally fine these day

    #176847 Reply
    Avatar DrDebt 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 15
    Joined: 07/07/2017

    i mean i wouldnt give them my money.

    but any commission free, low cost index ETF brokerage is literally fine these day

    Click to expand…

    Why not invest with them? No need to pay them for advising, but seems if I have a BOA account, they would be easiest to contribute to.

    #176872 Reply
    Zaphod Zaphod 
    Participant
    Status: Physician, Small Business Owner
    Posts: 5510
    Joined: 01/12/2016
    Disability Insurance

    I have them, its great. One of the better layouts and as you mentioned access to all funds, no trading costs, etc…

    #176873 Reply
    Liked by bean1970
    Avatar DrDebt 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 15
    Joined: 07/07/2017

    I have them, its great. One of the better layouts and as you mentioned access to all funds, no trading costs, etc…

    Click to expand…

    Do you (or anybody) know anything about their 529 option?

    #176876 Reply
    Zaphod Zaphod 
    Participant
    Status: Physician, Small Business Owner
    Posts: 5510
    Joined: 01/12/2016

    I have them, its great. One of the better layouts and as you mentioned access to all funds, no trading costs, etc…

    Click to expand…

    Do you (or anybody) know anything about their 529 option?

    Click to expand…

    Sorry, I do not.

    #176877 Reply
    Avatar Phantasos 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 67
    Joined: 01/06/2016

    If you can resist their sales pitch…

    You can receive a bonus by transferring brokerage holdings there, and if you balance is > $100k you have access to some of the best cc rewards presently available (2018).

    I haven’t done it yet, but I am watching…

    "The problem with internet quotes is that you can't always depend on their accuracy" - Abraham Lincoln, 1864

    #176882 Reply
    Avatar bean1970 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 445
    Joined: 07/12/2017

    i love Edge. 24/7 customer service. i’ve called them at all hours of the day and weekends to get help, send forms i need, etc…. No account fees. Free trading. Really good web platform for research.  plus they have the same CMA feature that Merrill lynch does (i love having a CMA account). Their travel service has been fantastic as well.

    i’m not sure what “pitch” you are talking about with edge…it’s DIY discount brokeraging……no one has ever called us in 5 years. we have our own assigned relationship management i guess is what his title is who will take care of anything we need when i call him, but anyone helps us on the 24/7 line.

    i believe their 529 is Maine.

    Merrill lynch on the other hand…..ugh…..no thanks. and i think that’s where a lot of people are mistaken. completely different platforms and model.

    Merrill edge….they don’t offer a solo401k.  that would need to go to merrill lynch (ugh).

    #176885 Reply
    hatton1 hatton1 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2848
    Joined: 01/11/2016

    I have bad memories from Merrill Lynch so no edge account.

    #176900 Reply
    Liked by jz
    Avatar spiritrider 
    Participant
    Status: Small Business Owner
    Posts: 1617
    Joined: 02/01/2016

    A bit of semantics, but financial institutions do not have 529 plans. States have 529 plans with third party program managers.

    Maine is the only state with ML as program manager. There are two 529 NextGen College Investing Plans. One is Client Direct Series and the other is Client Select Series sold by ML advisors. Lets respectively call these the “soak me with high fees” plan and the the “soak me with outrageously high fees” plan.

    There are several states with far less expensive nationwide plans. CA, NY, AZ, DE, MA, NH, NV and UT. I don’t know what state you live in, but there are several states with even lower costs for their residents and you might get a state tax deduction.

    #176909 Reply
    Liked by FIREshrink
    Avatar StarTrekDoc 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1703
    Joined: 01/15/2017

    Have Edge to get the Plat Rewards bonus on my Rewards cards — Good layout, fast and efficient with BOA too.

    Fidelity still gets bulk of dollars since retirement accounts there, but Edge is fine and carries my Vanguard index fund.

    529 at scholarshare.

    #176913 Reply
    Avatar bean1970 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 445
    Joined: 07/12/2017

    I have bad memories from Merrill Lynch so no edge account.

    Click to expand…

    that’s like saying you had a bad meal at outback steakhouse (not that you would eat there….) so you won’t eat at Carraba’s.   Same parent company..totally different entities.  IMO BoA (the parent company) should have called Merrill Edge just Edge or Edge Financials or something and leave out the Merrill part so people don’t confuse them.

    for me the 24/7 availability is really a plus…when there is a problem with your account you notice on a saturday morning.. you can call (or use their online chat). it’s not hanging over your head all weekend because vanguard isn’t open until monday morning……maybe some people don’t care…but really good customer service is nice.

    #176923 Reply
    Liked by hatton1
    hatton1 hatton1 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2848
    Joined: 01/11/2016
    Earnest refinancing bonus

    I like having my money primarily in one place.  I have been happy with Vanguard since living Merrill Lynch about 10 years ago.  I agree the customer service is spotty.  If I was still trading individual stocks I would not be happy with Vanguard.  I am in the “watch it compound phase” so Vanguard is fine.

    #177045 Reply
    Liked by Kamban, bean1970
    Avatar Mistborn 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 37
    Joined: 09/29/2018

    I have Merrill Edge for my 401k at work. Everyone else at my work has there account with regular Merrill Lynch paying 0.8% expense fee, I was stoked to find out I could do Merrill Edge instead and pay no fees and buy whatever ETFs I want.
    I have my personal accounts at Fidelity which I really like, but Edge is just fine. (Using Fidelity no cost mutual funds for total US and total international which I tax loss harvest between the regular fund and the new zero funds) I hold Vanguard ETFs at Edge which currently cost $5/trade, with 2019 contributions I will get up over the 50k minimum for several free monthly trades, which is more trades than I will ever do so essentially all free trades.

    I am not sure if my 401k counts towards the Merrill rewards card, but that would be a great additional benefit, believe it is equivalent to 2.6% cash back when at the maximum reward level. Beats my Fidelity 2% card.

    #178639 Reply
    Avatar milkycow 
    Participant
    Status: Resident
    Posts: 19
    Joined: 01/31/2016

    So, I happen to have a BOA account. Was just reviewing all my accounts recently. I initially got burned with Merrill Edge due to my lack of knowledge when I started residency. Had “Advisor” accounts opened. My person at my local BOA – Merrill Edge Advisor was definitely a novice and not totally looking out for my best interest. Fast forward several years. I’ve consumed a lot of content about personal finance.

    WCI led me to the ChooseFI podcast. Which led me to read, A Simple Path to Wealth by J.L. Collins. I’ve gained more confidence with knowledge and started by reading the WCI book, followed by forums. Started integrating physician finance lectures into our residency this year.

    Initially I was misled that Merrill Edge charges an AUM fee, that maybe affects only “Advisor” accounts with above 100k in assets. Self directed accounts on the other hand have no such fee besides cost of trading if your account is low. I don’t see a huge downside to using Merrill Edge since mostly free trades once you become preferred status.

    4 year residency with both wife and I and having close to 50k in our Vanguard Roth IRAs coming into my last home stretch till attendinghood. I don’t see any downside in rolling over my Vanguard account to Merrill Edge as it gives a lot of other unique advantages with the “preferred” status. I still have access to my favorite mutual fund, VTSAX with Merrill Edge as well.

    https://www.bankofamerica.com/preferred-rewards/

    Anybody with a long relationship with BOA/Merrill Edge see any downsides for me to transfer my Vanguard account over?

    #180287 Reply

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