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Break Free: How to Delete Coinbase in Just 3 Easy Steps!

You may have wondered “How do I get my money out of Coinbase?”

This guide is focused on how to transfer Bitcoin from Coinbase, and then delete your account.

Cory Klippsten
Cory Klippsten
Nov 15, 2023November 15, 20239 min read9 minutes read

In light of the recent SEC actions against Coinbase, you may have wondered, “How do I get my money from my Coinbase account?” 

As the regulatory landscape shifts, it’s wise for investors to consider safeguarding their holdings by moving them from Coinbase into secure cold storage. Additionally, converting altcoins to Bitcoin and opening an account with a Bitcoin-only company is a strategic move in light of these changes.

This guide focuses on moving Bitcoin off Coinbase and then permanently deleting your Coinbase account in just three simple steps.

Let’s get into it!

How to Close Your Coinbase Account in Three Steps

You may have wondered, “How do I get my money from my Coinbase account?” 

Your instinct may be to convert your Bitcoin to dollars before withdrawing your money from Coinbase. But it’s worth considering why Bitcoin is the best money in human history. You don’t want to part with such a precious asset lightly.

Below are the three easy steps to transfer Bitcoin from Coinbase and then how to delete your Coinbase account for good.

Step 1: Sell Your Altcoins for Bitcoin

Before closing your account, convert all your altcoins into Bitcoin. This is a deep topic to explore, but suffice it to say that you are better served by holding Bitcoin than gambling on any altcoin.

To sell your altcoins for Bitcoin, click 'Trade' at the top right of any Coinbase page.

Then select the 'Convert' tab. For any curren­cies besides Bitcoin with a non-zero balance, convert their full amount into Bitcoin.

Step 2: Set up a Bitcoin Address of Your Own

To get your Bitcoin off Coinbase, you first need to set up a Bitcoin address to receive those funds. If you’re not familiar with what this means, don’t worry!

All it means is that you’ll create your own unhack­able bank vault on the Bitcoin network with the click of a button — that’s really what a Bitcoin address is, a digital bank vault. As with any bank vault, what’s essential is securely storing the key that goes with it.

That’s here you have a choice:

  1. Hold in a self-custody option with total control or…

  2. An afford­able collab­o­ra­tive custody provider to help you set up and secure your Bitcoin address.

Whichever direc­tion you choose, there are 1000's of companies serving Bitcoiners, making it easier than ever to take the next step toward self-sover­eignty.

To help you evaluate your best options:

Related Reading: Best Bitcoin Wallets

Once you have a Bitcoin address set up and have securely stored your private keys, you’re almost ready to withdraw your Bitcoin from Coinbase and send it to your new Bitcoin address. But not just yet!  

If you withdraw your Bitcoin by clicking 'Send' on your Bitcoin balance page and entering your new Bitcoin address, that withdrawal will leave a tiny amount of Bitcoin behind, known as " .”

When you try to close your account, Coinbase won’t let you if you have a non-zero balance AND won’t allow you to withdraw the dust because it’s too small to send.

To avoid this frustrating situation, you must wait to withdraw your Bitcoin as part of the account closure process in Step 3.

Step 3: Withdraw from Coinbase and Delete Your Coinbase Account

Closing your Coinbase account and transferring your Bitcoin to your new address is easy. Of course, Coinbase doesn’t readily tell you how to delete your Coinbase account. So here is the process laid out screen by screen.

1. Log into your Coinbase account on a desktop browser:

2. Navigate to your user Settings and Activity tab with three clicks. First, click your profile circle in the upper right-hand corner:

3. Next, select 'Settings' from the drop-down box window.:

4. Find the Activity tab:

5. Scroll down to the bottom of the Activity tab and click 'Close Account.'

4. Enter your account password in the pop-up box, and click 'Close Account.'

5. You will be prompted to withdraw your Bitcoin balance from Coinbase as part of the account closure process.

Note: (This is what we were waiting for when we held off from withdrawing Bitcoin earlier).

6. You will be presented with a page that shows every possible digit asset on Coinbase. With everything zeroed out, scroll to the bottom and click 'Close Account' in the bottom right-hand corner:

Once you’ve closed your Coinbase account, you’ll need a new service to help you accumu­late Bitcoin.

Should You Delete Your Coinbase Account?

To understand why the #DeleteCoinbase movement has flourished and why so many people want to delete Coinbase accounts in favor of better options for their Bitcoin purchases, let’s first establish three key facts:

  1. Bitcoin already has an insur­mount­able lead on all other cryptocur­ren­cies in terms of market cap, liquidity, brand recognition, and total users. In the coming years and decades, Bitcoin will likely accrue 90 — 99% of all the future value in the space.

  2. Coinbase does not want you to accumu­late and hold Bitcoin. Every aspect of Coinbase’s product and marketing is designed to encourage you to trade as many assets as possible as often as possible. Coinbase makes money when you trade like any other casino, hoping to keep gamblers on the casino floor.

  3. 96% of traders fail. Unless you’re a career profes­sional, the sophis­ti­cated algorithm-aided pros who dominate the space will eat your lunch. You wouldn’t sit at a table with the best poker players in the world; trading is the same thing. You are best served by simply buying and holding Bitcoin.

  4. On June 6th, 2023, Coinbase simultaneously received a 'Show Case Order' from eleven U.S. states: AL, CA, IL, KY, MD, VT, NJ, SC, WA, and WI. The Order grants the company 28 days to present arguments about why they should not be instructed to cease selling cryptocurrencies in the states mentioned. 

  5. Additionally, Coinbase was issued a Wells' Notice by the U.S. SEC in late March of 2023.

If Coinbase cannot demonstrate it is not engaged in selling unregistered securities, the consequences can include a cease and desist order, financial penalties, legal proceedings, and additional operational restrictions imposed by regulatory authorities.

This regulatory uncertainty surrounding Coinbase raises concerns leading to a loss of customer trust and confidence in the platform. Customers concerned about the safety and stability of their assets on the exchange are beginning to seek Coinbase alternatives.

What Happens When You Close and Delete a Coinbase Account?

When closing a Coinbase account, the following actions are typically taken:

  1. Withdrawal of Funds: Ensure all funds and cryptocurrencies are withdrawn or transferred from your Coinbase account. Sell or transfer holdings to an external wallet or another exchange.

  2. Account Deactivation: Closing your account means losing access to it. You won’t be able to log in or perform any account-related actions. Coinbase may retain your account information as required by law or for other legitimate purposes.

  3. Termination of Services: Closing your Coinbase account terminates your relationship with them and their associated services, including buying, selling, or trading cryptocurrencies on their platform. You’ll lose access to features, tools, and customer support.

  4. Data Retention: Coinbase may retain certain information related to your closed account, such as transaction records, account activity, and identification details, for compliance and legal obligations. They should handle your personal information according to their privacy policy and applicable data protection laws.

  5. Reopening Limitations: Closed accounts may not be reopened. If you for some reason wish to use Coinbase again, you’ll need to create a new account and go through the registration process anew.

Coinbase Alternatives to Buy Bitcoin

If you find yourself in the United States and seek a Coinbase alternative platform to buy Bitcoin, we do recommend you check out Swan Bitcoin

Swan boasts remarkably low fees, especially for automatic recurring purchases. The recurring purchases feature allows you to consistently invest in Bitcoin effortlessly, empowering you to build your digital wealth over time. Swan also has best in-class customer service, ensuring a seamless and informed experience throughout your Bitcoin journey.

Moreover, Swan has the option to self-custody your Bitcoin, ensuring greater control and security over your valuable assets. While self-custody is recommended, it remains optional, accommodating a diverse range of user preferences.

Swan has best in class customer service, ensuring a seamless and informed experience throughout your Bitcoin journey.

Swan Bitcoin Trustpilot Ratings

Swan scores a 4.6 out of 5 stars from 969 reviews as of November 2023. Swan goes above and beyond in their commitment to serving and educating their customers about Bitcoin.

Coinbase fares no better with the Better Business Bureau. The exchange has a near-worst possible score of 1.06 stars of 5-star rating.

Furthermore, the following ⚠️ CURRENT ALERTS FOR THIS BUSINESS message can be found on the company BBB page:

Once you delete your Coinbase account, Swan is your best Coinbase Alternative. Swan offers lower fees, self-custody options with a strong dedication to industry best customer service and education. 

Alternatives to Coinbase, How Can I Buy Bitcoin?

Lucky for you, several new businesses worldwide have created better ways to buy Bitcoin over the past few years. If you’re outside the United States, our article “Bitcoin Invest­ment Sites for 2020: Top 6 Trusted Sites” will get you started picking the option that’s right for you.

Bitcoin has been the best performing asset the last 14 years. If you’re in the U.S., Swan is an increas­ingly popular choice. Swan has some of the lowest fees for automatic recur­ring purchases to self-custody (recom­mended, but optional) and a strong commit­ment to serving and educating customers about their Bitcoin.

You can also invest through your retirement account with a Swan Bitcoin IRA.

Cory Klippsten

Cory Klippsten

Cory Klippsten is the CEO of Bitcoin financial services firm He is a partner in Bitcoiner Ventures and El Zonte Capital, serves as an advisor to The Bitcoin Venture Fund, and as an angel has funded more than 50 early stage tech companies. Before startups, Klippsten worked for Google, McKinsey, Microsoft and Morgan Stanley, and earned an MBA from the University of Chicago. He grew up in Seattle, split 15 years between NYC and Chicago, and now lives in LA with his wife and daughters. His hobbies include basketball, history and travel (Istanbul and Barcelona are favorites).

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