Looking for a Bitcoin Buying Guide? Wondering where to start? People have many misconceptions about Bitcoin, the very first widely known and globally accepted cryptocurrency.
Many people think, for example, that only hackers and shady people use it. However, Bitcoin is actually becoming mainstream, with everyone from TigerDirect to Expedia.com to Dell and even Subway accepting Bitcoin payments.
Why so popular?
Well, Bitcoin has many advantages over other currencies. For example, you can send bitcoins to someone as payment without going through a bank intermediary (and without incurring additional fees). It’s also much faster than sending money via bank transfer or wire transfer. You can send bitcoins to someone and have them receive coins in seconds.
With all of this in mind, it’s not surprising that many people are now trying to buy Bitcoin for the first time. However, it’s not as simple as going to your bank and withdrawing bitcoins – or going to a store and dropping some hard-earned cash on bitcoins.
The system works a little differently. This guide to buying bitcoins will go over some of the things you need to know before you buy so that you can buy safely and securely.
First of all, although the price can exceed $2,000 USD per coin, you don’t have to buy an entire Bitcoin. You can buy bitcoins for as little as $20 in most places. That way, you can start small and go from there as you get more comfortable with how things work.
Second, this article is for general purposes only and should not be construed as financial advice. Bitcoin can be risky, so you should check with your financial advisor before buying to see if it’s right for you.
So, here are 3 easy steps to buy bitcoins:
#1 Get a Bitcoin Wallet
The first thing to do before buying coins is to get a virtual wallet to store your coins. This wallet is a string of text that people can use to send you bitcoins.
There are several different types of wallets, including wallets you download to your phone or computer, online wallets, and even offline, cold wallets.
Most people prefer to have their wallet on their phone or computer. Popular wallets include Blockchain, Armory, Bitgo MyCelium, and Xapo.
This is usually as simple as downloading the wallet to your phone as an app or downloading the software to your computer from the wallet’s main website.
#2 Decide where to buy
There are several types of places to shop and each one is different. There are online sellers who will sell you bitcoins directly for cash (or bank transfer or credit card).
There are exchanges where you can buy and sell bitcoins from others – similar to the stock market. There are also local exchanges that connect you with sellers in your area who want to sell.
There are also ATMs where you buy with cash and get coins in your wallet in minutes.
Each Bitcoin seller has its own advantages and disadvantages. For example, ATMs are great for privacy, but they will charge you up to 20% over the going rate, which is ridiculous. (At a BTC price of $2000, that’s $400! So you’re paying $2400 instead of $2000).
No matter where you decide to buy, remember to do your research and go with a proven retailer with a good reputation and great customer service. First-time buyers in particular will have questions and may need additional support to help them with their first transaction.
Take your time and research different places to buy before making a decision. Factors to consider include coin prices, additional fees, payment method, and customer service.
#3 Buy Bitcoins and transfer them to your wallet
Once you find a place to buy, prepare the funds (ie you can send a bank transfer or use Visa to fund your account). Then expect a good price. (Bitcoin prices are always fluctuating 24/7). Then place your order when you’re ready.
When your order is fulfilled and you have coins, you will want to send them to your wallet. Just enter your bitcoin address and have the seller send you your bitcoins. You should see them appear in your wallet within a few minutes to an hour (depending on how quickly the seller ships them).
Voila, you are now a bitcoin owner. Now you can send coins to pay for other goods and services or hold them for a rainy day.
One last thing to remember: Bitcoin is still in its infancy. There are large price fluctuations and the currency can be risky. Never buy more bitcoins than you can afford to lose.