How to Sell Stock Without a Broker

Stay on top of your investments

There are several ways to sell stock without a broker, though each method requires some measure of work and minor expense for postage and notary fees. In addition, you will have to locate the buyer yourself. With the low costs of online trading, it may be preferable to consider this route instead.

Step 1

Transfer stock in lieu of cash donations to any charity you are gifting. Besides the tax advantage of giving appreciated stock to a charity, most brokerage houses charge charities little or nothing for gifted stock. If the stock is in physical form, merely sign the transfer power on the back of the certificate. For stock held by the broker, the charity will have instructions for you to follow.

Step 2

Find a buyer for your stock---a family friend, neighbor or relative. It will be necessary to contact the transfer agent to have the stock transferred into the purchasing party's name. Use the stock price as of a certain date as the trade date, so there will be no disagreement among the parties as to the trade amount. Be certain there are no dividend payments pending, and if so, they should be paid to the selling party.

Step 3

Use DRIP programs where possible. DRIP or dividend reinvestment plans allow you to buy as little as one share of stock from a participating member or a broker and then arrange for all dividends to be paid in the form of additional shares. Not all stocks have such a program, but the stocks that do tend to be large dividend-paying stocks. Shares can then be sold to plan participants, allowing the investor to pay no commissions for either buying or selling stock.

Step 4

When making large purchases, use stock and sign the stock over to the buyer. He can sell the stock at his expense when he is ready. You avoid the commission and the buyer receives secure funds through ownership of the stock certificate.

Step 5

Sell stock through an in-the-money covered call. This means writing an option below the current stock price. The premium paid by the call buyer to you, the seller, will more than cover the commissions for the option and the stock sale. This is a popular method used by large institutions to move large quantities of stock.

Tip

Use tax-advantaged gifting to your benefit. You will also realize commission savings.

Warning

Be absolutely certain that the person buying the stock in a private sale agrees to the stock price for the shares in advance and pays at the time she receives the certificate. If the stock goes down sharply while she is waiting for the transfer, she may try to adjust the price.

resources