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How to withdraw money from Charles Schwab: methods and costs

Your expert
Adam N.
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1d ago
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How can I withdraw money from Charles Schwab?

One of the most common fears about trading online is, can I get my money back? And even if that's a given, will I face any extra costs, delays or difficulties as I try to withdraw my uninvested funds?

Charles Schwab is a trustworthy broker that honors all withdrawal requests, but the process is not the most convenient. Read on to learn about potential costs, waiting time or restrictions.

Withdrawal at Charles Schwab is fast but options are limited
Adam
Adam Nasli
Trading • Safety • Market Analysis

Charles Schwab is one of many brokers I have tested throughout the years. I used my own money for trading - and then tried to get it back. Here's how it went:

  • No worries - Charles Schwab is a reliable broker that lets you access your funds any time.
  • You can use only bank transfers to withdraw funds.
  • In most cases, you can get your money back within 2 days.
  • Charles Schwab charges $0 for basic withdrawals, but some methods may cost more.
  • Read our full review of Charles Schwab for detailed funding and trading conditions.

First, let's see if Charles Schwab is available in your country?

Yes, you can open an account at Charles Schwab if you live in the United States!
the United States

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BrokerChooser score
4.7 4.7 /5
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You can withdraw funds from Charles Schwab any time

Let me start with the good news: Charles Schwab is considered a legit and trustworthy broker, where your money is in good hands, and you can withdraw it whenever you want to.

How to tell if a broker is trustworthy? In our view, a broker is considered legit if its operations are overseen by at least one top-tier regulator. At BrokerChooser, we only recommend such regulated brokers.

Unfortunately, the online trading industry is plagued by a large number of unregulated or scam brokers. Many of these simply refuse to return your money, or require outrageous percentage commissions before doing so. If you've heard about any broker that you're unsure about, check it against our scam broker list or discuss it in our Forum.

You can only withdraw funds via bank transfer

So how to actually withdraw funds from Charles Schwab? At Charles Schwab, you can only withdraw your money using a bank transfer. This puts Charles Schwab at a slight disadvantage over brokers that also offer withdrawal to credit/debit cards or electronic wallets such as PayPal.

Broker
Bank transfer
Credit/debit card
Charles Schwab
E*TRADE
Fidelity
Charles Schwab withdrawal options

Remember, you can only withdraw funds to bank accounts that are in your name.

Withdrawing money from Charles Schwab - a step-by-step guide

How do you withdraw money from Charles Schwab?

  • Log in to your account.
  • Go to 'Transfers & Payments'.
  • Select the withdrawal method.
  • Select your Charles Schwab account as 'Transfer from'.
  • Select the account you want to withdraw the money to as 'Transfer to'.
  • Enter the amount you wish to withdraw.
  • Initiate the withdrawal.

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It usually takes no more than 1-2 days to receive your funds

Whatever method you use, withdrawals from a brokerage account are rarely instant. When I tried withdrawing funds from Charles Schwab, I had to wait two business days for the money to arrive. Not the fastest for sure, but actually this is considered fairly normal in the online brokerage world.

Strict withdrawal times are not the only factor to keep in mind when you need to retrieve money from your broker account. The most important thing is that you can only withdraw uninvested cash from your brokerage account. If all of your funds are invested, you need to close some or all of your positions first to make the necessary amount of cash available in your broker account.

Converting your assets to cash often takes additional time. For example, if you sell a stock, it will take another day (or most likely two) for the transaction to settle and for the cash proceeds to appear in your brokerage account.

So what I would normally do is think ahead depending on how urgently I needed the money. For example, if I needed $1,000 cash on Monday and it was still all tied down in stocks or some other assets at Charles Schwab, I would probably

  • log in to my Charles Schwab account as much as a week earlier, to sell stocks or other assets worth $1,000 (or maybe a bit more to cover any withdrawal fees; see next chapter).
  • Then I would check back a day or two later (around the middle of the week) to see if the asset sale has been completed and if the cash has appeared in my broker account.
  • If yes, I would then initiate the withdrawal, so that the money arrives in my personal bank account or on my card (whichever applicable) by next Monday at the latest.

Basic withdrawals cost $0, but there may be exceptions

While depositing money to a brokerage account is free in most cases, this is not necessarily always true for withdrawals. But I have good news: basic withdrawal at Charles Schwab is free of charge. See the table below for details and possible exceptions, and also how Charles Schwab's fees compare to some of its immediate competitors.

Broker
Withdrawal fee
Domestic bank withdrawal
Charles Schwab
$0
$0.0
E*TRADE
$0
$0.0
Fidelity
$0
$0.0
Charles Schwab withdrawal options and fees

Conversion fees

In addition to any withdrawal fees, you should also be aware of potential conversion fees. These usually apply if your bank account or card is denominated in a different currency than the funds you are withdrawing from your broker.

At Charles Schwab, the following account currencies are available: USD.

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Further reading

Everything you find on BrokerChooser is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology.

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Adam Nasli
Author of this article
I bring extensive financial expertise as one of BrokerChooser's earliest team members. Personally, I tested nearly all 100+ brokers on our site, opening real-money accounts, executing trades, assessing customer services, and providing firsthand assessment. My professional background includes roles in the banking sector and a degree from Central European University, where I teach finance. My passions lies in in-depth research of the financial industry, building trading algorithms, and managing long-term investments.
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