Some of Robinhood’s features are a bit hidden or not readily apparent on the main screen. The interface is simple, which is why it’s so popular, but this comes with some drawbacks. Finding where to change to order type isn’t immediately obvious so placing limit orders requires a few extra steps on Robinhood.
When you place an order on Robinhood, the default setting is a market order. It’s important to know that there are actually several different order types available. Market orders are fine in certain situations, but if you want to make sure you get your order filled at at certain price, you need to be using limit orders. For a more in-depth look at the different order types, check out this post. Here’s a quick tutorial on how to set a limit order in the Robinhood app.
First, locate the stock you want buy (or sell). Tap the Trade button shown in the picture above. This will bring you to the order screen which has you defaulted to a market order. To change the order type, tap Shares in the top right corner.
Here you’ll see a screen that has several options for order types. You can choose to purchase a stock using shares or dollars. The main reason someone would purchase a stock using a set dollar amount is to buy fractional shares. Under Conditional Orders, you see several options. Tap Limit Order (or whatever kind of order you are trying to place) to get back to your order screen. On the order screen you will then enter your limit price. On a buy, this is the highest price you are willing to pay per share. On a sell, this is the lowest price you are willing to sell each share for. Tap Continue to finish placing your order.
Limit orders are important if you are trying to buy in or sell at a specific price point. You can use them for both buying and selling. If you enter a limit order that is below the market price, like I have done in the example with SUNW in the pictures above, your order will not trigger until the market reaches your limit price or lower. It’s important to note that you will then be buying the stock when the price is headed down. Make sure you keep on top of any unfilled limit orders so you don’t end up buying a stock at the beginning of a big price decline! Market orders usually fill immediately because you are saying you’ll just buy at whatever price is currently available. Sometimes a stock’s price moves faster than your ability to enter a limit order. This is one reason I personally prefer trading on a platform that allows me to set my default order type as a limit order (or easily allows me to change the order type without having to go to another screen).
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