How to Buy, Trade and Sell Litecoin (LTC) in 2020

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Litecoin is a cryptocurrency that allows you to send and receive funds on a peer-to-peer basis. Often referred to as the Silver to Bitcoin’s Gold, Litcoin is a much smaller cryptocurrency project in comparison to BTC. However, in terms of the end-to-end transaction process, it actually performs better. Notably, while Bitcoin transactions take 10 minutes to confirm, Litecoin takes just 2.5 minutes. Litecoin is also able to scale more transactions at 56 per second, compared to the 7 facilitated by Bitcoin.

With that being said, if you’re keen to invest in Litecoin for the future, we would suggest reading our guide on How to Buy, Sell & Trade Litecoin in 2020. Within it, we’ll show you the best exchanges and brokers to buy Litecoin, as well as what you need to look out for before joining a new platform. We’ll also give you the ins and outs of what Litecoin actually is, and why it could represent a good investment in the long-run.

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What is Litecoin?

Launched way back in 2011, Litecoin was one of the first cryptocurrency projects to compete with the status quo of Bitcoin. Its founder – Charlie Lee, wanted to create a blockchain protocol that carried the same characteristics of Bitcoin – such as a decentralized blockchain, a transparent network, peer-to-peer transactions, and high security, but make it better. As such, Lee performed a fork of the Bitcoin blockchain – meaning that it utilized the same underlying code, but with some key changes along the way.

Notably, Litecoin improved on the Bitcoin blockchain on two key fronts. Firstly, Litecoin transactions take just 2.5 minutes as opposed to the 10 minutes that Bitcoin requires. Secondly, Litecoin is also able to scale more transactions. While Bitcoin is limited to just 7 transactions per second, Litecoin is able to scale 56. On the flip side, this is still much lower in comparison to other cryptocurrency projects in the space, with the likes of Ripple able to scale 1,500 transactions per second.

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Nevertheless, Litecoin has grown to exponential heights since its inception in 2011. When it was first launched on a tradable exchange in 2013, you could have purchased a single Litecoin for just $4.30. Fast forward to the crypto-craze of late 2018, and that very same Litecoin was worth $350. This represents a 2013-2018 increase of more than 8,000%. However – and much like the rest of the cryptocurrency arena, Litecoin is now worth just a fraction of its all-time high price.

In fact, at the time of writing Litecoin is worth just $44, illustrating a near-on 87% decrease from its previous glory. On the other hand, many would argue that this represents a good buying opportunity. In terms of the fundamentals, Litecoin operates in a similar nature to its industry counterparts, insofar that its underlying blockchain allows you to view historical transactions at the click of a button.

What are the Pros and Cons of Buying Litecoin?

The Pros

  • A great Bitcoin alternative for your cryptocurrency portfolio
  • Transfer time of just a 2.5 minutes (Bitcoin takes 10 minutes)
  • Up to 56 transactions per second (Bitcoin is just 7)
  • Founder Charlie Lee is well respected in the blockchain space
  • Multi-billion dollar market capitalization
  • Fractionization allows you to buy as much or as little Litecoin as you like
  • Ability to buy Litecoin with fiat currency – including debit/credit cards and e-wallets

The Cons

  • Much smaller than Bitcoin in every department (such as market cap, mass adoption, reputation, etc.)
  • No guarantee that Litecoin will ever regain its previous all-time highs

Where to Buy Litecoin Online?

If you’re interested in buying Litecoin for the very first time, you will need to use a third-party exchange. Such platforms often allow you to use everyday payment methods like a debit or credit card, which is great if you have no prior experience of buying cryptocurrencies. However, with hundreds of cryptocurrency exchanges now active in the market, knowing which platform to go with can be challenging.

As such, we would suggest reading through the 7 considerations we have listed below before joining a new Litecoin exchange.

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7 Things to Consider When Buying Litecoin:

1. Choose Your Deposit Method

The first thing that you need to look out for prior to joining a Litecoin exchange is what payment methods the platform supports. If you’re just starting out in the crypto space then it is likely that you will need to use an everyday payment method to fund your purchase. Platforms now offer a range of deposit methods, such as a debit/credit card, e-wallet (such as PayPal), or local bank transfer.

The other option that you have in the funding department is that of a crypto-to-crypto exchange. This is where you will swap an alternative digital currency like Bitcoin or Ethereum for Litecoin. In doing so, you’ll avoid the fees associated with fiat currency deposits.

Cash

  • You can use a Bitcoin ATM
  • Use transactions P2P
  • Doesn’t need KYC
  • Harder to be used
  • Easier to be Scammed

Credit/Debit Card

  • Quickest method
  • Best method for beginners
  • Most platforms accept it
  • High charging fees
  • Centralised and not anonymous

PayPal

  • Allows Chargebacks
  • One of the biggest e-wallet providers
  • Safe and Secure
  • High exchange rates
  • Centralised and can identify their users

Gift Card

  • You can gift it to anyone
  • Anonymous
  • Easier to find in a physical shop
  • Can be claimed by anyone
  • High ‘claiming’ fees

2. KYC

Although most Litecoin exchanges allow you to trade cryptocurrencies in an anonymous manner, this won’t be the case if you are looking to use a platform that supports fiat currency. On the contrary, the exchange will need to verify your identity to ensure it complies with anti-money laundering laws. To do this, a process known as KYC (Know Your Customer) will require you upload some verification documents before you can buy Litecoin.

This will cover a copy of your government-issued ID (passport or driver’s license), and a document verifying your home address (such as a bank statement or utility bill). Once you have uploaded the documents and had them verified by the exchange, you can then buy Litecoin with fiat currency.

3. Buying Litecoin vs Trading CFDs

While most of you will be looking to buy Litecoin and store it externally in a private wallet, it is also worth considering the merits of a CFD (contract for difference). This is a hugely popular financial vehicle that allows you to speculate on the price of an asset without needing to own it. CFDs are popular in heaps of other markets, such as gold, stocks, futures, options, and oil.

In the case of Litecoin, you can invest in the price of the digital currency at a regulated CFD broker, meaning you don’t need to worry about storage. However, if you’re looking to own Litecoin 100% outright and store it safely in a private wallet, then you’ll need to buy it from a cryptocurrency exchange, before withdrawing the coins out.

Buying Litecoin

  • You will own Litecoin 100% – Nobody has control over your coins apart from you
  • Great if you are looking to invest in Litecoin for a number of years
  • You can send your Litecoin to other wallets, and even spend it in the real-world
  • Never exposed by the potential collapse of a third-party exchange – Your Litecoin is always safe

Trading Litecoin CFDs

  • CFDs make it super-easy to speculate on the price of Litecoin
  • CFD brokers are heavily regulated – Benefit from a range of investor safeguards
  • Some CFD brokers offer 0% commission and fee-free trading on Litecoin investments
  • Sell your Litecoin back to fiat currency at the click of a button – No need to transfer coins from an external wallet

4. Do You Need a Wallet?

The next consideration that you need to make is with regards to storage. If you opt for the CFD route when buying Litecoin, you don’t need to worry about this. However, if you’re looking to buy Litecoin in its truest form, you’ll need to store it in a private wallet.

Although third-party exchanges allow you to keep your coins in your their wallet, it is much safer to withdraw them to a private wallet. As such, make sure that your chosen Litecoin exchange allows you to withdraw your coins out.

5. Compare Fees

As is the case in the traditional investment arena, you need to evaluate what sort of fees the cryptocurrency exchange is going to charge you to buy Litecoin. Firstly, if you’re thinking about using an everyday payment method like a debit or credit card, you’ll likely pay in the region of 4-5% per transaction. Bank account transfers are much cheaper, although the process is somewhat slow.

You also need to assess what trading fees the exchange charges. This will be charged on a percentage basis, as per the size of the purchase. For example, if the trading fee is 1% and you buy $500 worth of Litecoin, you’ll pay a trading fee of $5. You’ll also pay a trading fee when you eventually sell the coins.

6. Regulation and Security

Although policymakers around the world are looking to clamp down on unregulated cryptocurrency exchanges,  much of the industry still operates without a license. This means that you need to be really careful with the exchange platform that you deposit funds into. As such, stick with a Litecoin exchange that has an excellent reputation in the cryptocurrency space.

If you don’t feel comfortable using an unregulated exchange, then you might need to consider a CFD broker. Such platforms are usually in receipt of at least one regulatory license, meaning you’ll be accustomed to a range of consumer protections. Finally, you should also stick with a Litecoin exchange that offers top-grade security – such as cold storage and 2FA (two-factor authentication).

7. How Easy is it to Use the Platform?

If you’re here reading this guide as a newbie, then you will want to use a Litecoin exchange that is easy to use. Beginner-friendly platforms will make the entire buying process seamless, meaning that you can deposit funds, verify your identity, and subsequently purchase Litecoin without needing any prior experience. You’ll likely get a feel for the user-friendliness of the exchange as soon as you browse the platform.

Where Can I Store my Litecoin?

Unless you are looking to invest in Litecoin via a CFD, you will need to make some considerations regarding storage. This is crucial, as the cryptocurrency arena is dominated by horror stories of hacks.

Unlike a traditional bank account, there is nobody that can help you in the event your Litecoin is stolen, so choosing the right wallet for your individual needs is paramount. As such, we have listed the four main wallet types below – each of which comes with its own pros and cons.

1. Web Wallet

When you first buy Litecoin from a third-party cryptocurrency exchange, your coins will be deposited into the platform’s ‘web wallet’. This means that you can access your Litecoin simply by logging into your account via a standard web browser. As convenient as this might sound, web wallets are fraught with risk.

Notably, if the exchange in question was hacked (which is more common than you think), the criminal might be able to steal your Litecoin. If they do, and the exchange doesn’t cover the theft (which they don’t always do), your coins will be lost forever. Ultimately, if you like the convenience that a web wallet offers, make sure that you only keep a small amount of coins in one.

2. Mobile Wallet

Unlike a web wallet, mobile wallets offer much more in the security department. Once you download and install the wallet to your phone, you will then need to transfer your Litecoin over from the exchange that you purchased them. This will then allow you to send and receive coins at the click of a button.

A mobile wallet will also allow you to utilize the QR code feature, which removes to need to manually enter wallet addresses when transferring funds. When it comes to security, you will benefit from your phone’s screen lock PIN, as well as the password you set-up on the mobile wallet itself.

3. Desktop Wallet

As the name suggests, a desktop wallet allows you to store your Litecoin on your desktop or laptop device. Desktop wallets are slightly more secure than mobile wallets, as you will be offered a number of additional security safeguards. This includes the ability to set-up 2FA, meaning that you’ll need to confirm a code that is sent your cell phone before you can access the wallet.

You can also instruct your desktop wallet to block withdrawals without first passing the 2FA process. As such, unless a hacker had access to both your mobile phone and desktop device concurrently, your funds should be safe.

4. Hardware Wallet

While mobile and desktop wallets offer a number of security features to keep your funds safe, nothing compares to a hardware wallet. In fact, hardware wallets are as secure as it comes in the cryptocurrency arena. Firstly, as the hardware wallet is never connected to any servers, this removes the threat of a remote hack. In order to transfer funds out of the wallet, you will be required to enter your secret PIN.

As such, even if the device was lost or stolen, your funds would still remain safe – as you could regain access remotely with your secret passphrase. Although you will need to pay around $100 for a leading hardware wallet such as Trezor or Ledger Wallet Nano, it’s well worth the investment for the peace of mind it offers.

Still Worried About Storage?: If the thought of having to secure your Litecoin concerns you- with nowhere to turn in the event that the coins were lost or stolen, then you might be best to stick with a conventional CFD. Although you won’t actually own the coins, you can still speculate on the future price of Litecoin. Moreover, CFD brokers are heavily regulated, and some platforms even allow you to invest on a fee-free basis!

Where can you Spend Your Litecoin?

Although Litecoin is ideal for payments, real-world support is still in its infancy. However, Litecoin has partnered with a number of debit card providers (such as Uquid), which effectively gives you access to millions of merchants and ATMs worldwide.

The way it works is you will need to transfer your Litecoin on to your debit card, and when you make a purchase the issuer will make an instant exchange into the local currency being used. Just make sure that you have a firm understanding of the underlying fee structure, as you’ll need to pay a conversion fee every time you use the card.

How to Sell Litecoin?

If you’re looking to sell your Litecoin investment, then it hoped that you are doing so at a profit. However, there might come a time where you need to sell your Litecoin to raise cash, or you simply want to cut your losses on an investment that didn’t quite pan out. Either way, selling your Litecoin back for real-world cash is a seamless process. First and foremost, you will need to find a cryptocurrency exchange that supports bank accounts – as this is how you will be withdrawing the fund back out.

Once you’ve found a suitable platform, you will need to transfer the coins from your Litecoin wallet into the exchange. Next, you’ll then need to exchange Litecoin back to your chosen fiat currency (such as USD/EUR/GBP), which will attract a small trading fee. Finally, you will then be able to withdraw the funds back to your bank account. You will likely need to go through a KYC verification process before the exchange permits the withdrawal if you haven’t already done this.

Litecoin vs. Bitcoin – What’s the Difference?

Although Litecoin was forked from the original Bitcoin blockchain, there are actually some notable differences between the two projects.

1. Transaction Times: While Bitcoin takes 10 minutes to confirm a block of transactions, Litecoin takes just 2.5 minutes.

2. Transactions/Second: Litecoin is able to confirm 56 transactions per second, while the Bitcoin network is stuck at just 7.

3. Fees: Both Bitcoin and Litecoin use a variable fee structure, meaning that transaction fees go up or down based on network demand.

4. Decentralization: Litecoin and Bitcoin both utilize a decentralized blockchain, so no single person or authority has control over the network. Instead, transactions are verified by miners.

5. Supply: Bitcoin has around 18 million coins in circulation at the time of writing, which will be capped at 21 million in the year 2140. Litecoin currently has a circulating supply of around 62 million. Once the project reaches 84 million no more Litecoin will be created.

6. Use Case: Bitcoin and Litecoin were both designed for the purpose of sending and receiving payments. In this sense, both projects have a similar use case.

7. Leadership: Although Bitcoin has been operating for more than 10 years, we still don’t know the true identity of its founder – ‘Satoshi Nakamoto’. On the contrary, Litecoin was created by Charlie Lee – who is still the project’s public face and de-facto leader.

8. Market Cap: Bitcoin is significantly more popular than Litecoin. At the time of writing, Bitcoin holds a market capitalization of $131 billion, while Litecoin is worth just $2.8 billion.

9. Price: Much like in the case of market capitalization, the price of a single Bitcoin is worth much more than Litecoin. At the time of writing, Bitcoin is worth $7,300, with Litecoin at $44.

10. Miners: Although there is a variation of the underlying algorithm, both Bitcoin and Litecoin utilize the Proof-of-Work consensus mechanism.

Conclusion

If you have read our guide from start to finish, you should now have a firm idea of how the Litecoin purchase process works. Crucially, you should be able to evaluate whether or not a cryptocurrency exchange is right for your individual needs, by looking at key metrics such as fees, payment methods, KYC, and user-friendliness.

Ultimately, it remains to be seen what the future holds for Litecoin. Many from within the industry argue that the project could hold little use if Bitcoin is able to one day resolve its woes surrounding scalability and speed. In other words, if Bitcoin is able to scale more transactions per second than Litecoin, and confirm transactions quicker, then the appeal of LTC could become irrelevant.

On the flip side, shrewd investors will look at the current value of Litecoin and note that it is now worth just a fraction of its previous all-time high. If Litecoin is able to regain its prior glory and thus – breach the $350-mark once again, this would represent a significant increase. However, there is no guarantee that this will ever happen, so do proceed with caution.

Try Our Recommended Crypto Exchange & Wallet 2019

  • 15+ Cryptos + Wallet Available
  • $200 Minimum Deposit
  • Accepts Paypal
  • Trade Stocks, Forex, Crypto and more
75% of retail investors lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

FAQs:

What payment methods can I use to buy Litecoin?

With hundreds of cryptocurrency exchanges supporting Litecoin, you will have a number of payment methods to choose from. This includes traditional debit and credit cards, e-wallets like PayPal and Skrill, or a bank transfer. Just remember, you will need to verify your identity before an exchange allows you to deposit fiat currency.

What is the safest way to store my Litecoin?

If safety is your number one priority, then we would suggest investing in a hardware wallet. This will ensure that your Litecoin investment is free from the threats of a malicious hack. Even if the device was stolen, the thief would not be able to access the funds without knowing your secret PIN!

How long does a Litecoin transaction take?

Litecoin typically takes 2.5 minutes to confirm a transfer of funds. This is much quicker than its Bitcoin counterpart, which takes 10 minutes.

Remember, all trading carries risk. Views expressed are those of the writers only. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. The opinions expressed in this Site do not constitute investment advice and independent financial advice should be sought where appropriate. This website is free for you to use but we may receive commission from the companies we feature on this site.

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