Linking your checking account to your E_TRADE account is very easy to do. E_TRADE not only leads you through the process step by step, but before beginning you may view a tutorial on how to coordinate the management of your account with an external checking account.
Visit etrade.com and log in using your user ID and password. The first "Accounts" tab should be highlighted in gray and it will be attached to a gray bar with sub tabs that run right underneath the black tabs. Look for the gray sub tab "Transfer Money" and click on it.
Click "Add External Account."
Provide information requested about your external account, including the account number and routing number, and click "I agree" at the bottom.
Click on "Verify External Accounts."
Click "Activate Outgoing Transfers."
Choose "Instant Verification" or "Deposit Verification." Instant verification allows you to put in your user ID and password for your external bank account and begin making transfers immediately. Alternatively, through deposit verification E*TRADE makes two small test deposits into your external account. This may take two or three business days, after which you will be able to transfer money.
Do not wait more than two days to do the deposit verification. If you wait too long you will have to start the process over again.