Bitcoin has been grabbing headlines as it has reached Wall Street, but other types of cryptocurrency are also worthy of attention. Litecoin can be called the silver to Bitcoin’s gold with upward momentum that is actually beating Bitcoin. This Bitcoin rival has reached record highs, soaring more than 4,000% in 2017 alone compared to Bitcoin’s 1,800% increase. Litecoin has been around since 2011 and it was the first to alter Bitcoin. The biggest difference between the two is it takes 10 minutes to generate a Bitcoin block compared to 2.5 minutes for Litecoin. Because it has more coins in circulation and larger blocks, Litecoin is faster and more affordable to trade.
Like Bitcoin, Litecoin can be easy to buy, hold, and trade. You may choose to buy Litecoin to diversify away from Bitcoin or as a more useful alternative currency.
Here’s how to get started with Litecoin investment.
Basics of Buying Litecoin
As with Bitcoin, buying Litecoin requires downloading a Litecoin wallet. This wallet holds keys, or unique number and letter strands that allow you to access the cryptocurrency. There are two main types of wallets: cold wallets which are offline for storage and hot wallets, which are connected to the internet. Some wallets act only as storage, but others allow you to hold and buy Litecoin through a website. Once you have a wallet, you can decide where to buy Litecoin. There are a few reliable ways to buy Litecoin, explained below.
Buying Litecoin Through Coinbase
Coinbase allows you to convert currency like dollars into Litecoin. Coinbase is the most user-friendly and popular way to buy Litecoin as you can trade, store, and invest on a single website. Coinbase also has a proven track record with millions of customers. Unlike some options, Coinbase sources Litecoin from other sellers and buyers. You are not buying Litecoin directly on an exchange.
To get started on Coinbase, you will need to create an account and set up your payment options. If you link a credit or debit card, you will be limited to purchasing no more than $150 per week in cryptocurrency of any type, but your transaction will be immediate. With a bank account, you have a higher purchase limit but your transaction processing time will be 4 to 5 days.
It’s important to note that you can’t use a debit or credit card to sell cryptocurrency on Coinbase. You will need to link your bank account to do this. If you do add your bank account, you have another purchase option available: recurring purchases. The auto-buy feature allows you to automatically invest in Litecoin with a pre-set dollar amount, but you will have no control of the buy price.
As with Bitcoin, you can purchase fractions of Litecoin. You will always see the latest price for Litecoin and recent changes before making a purchase.
Buying Litecoin Through Bitfinex
If you already own Bitcoin, a cheaper way to buy Litecoin is using your Bitcoin wallet. Sites like Bitfinex can make this easy. The Bitfinex Exchange platform allows you to exchange Bitcoin for Litecoin at its current value through a trading environment. Purchases are instant with Litecoin sent to an external wallet. You can also fund your account with Litecoin to purchase Bitcoin.
Buying Litecoin Through Changelly
Changelly is another type of exchange to convert one type of cryptocurrency to another. Changelly does not require that you store your Litecoin or Bitcoin on the exchange. Instead, your currencies are converted from one wallet to another instantly. You will need to specify how much Bitcoin you want to turn into Litecoin, but you will see exactly how much Litecoins you receive in the transaction.