Account limits

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Elevated account limits apply to fiat payment accounts in order to limit damage a malicious user can do while allowing honest users to start trading immediately with no KYC and utmost privacy.

Altcoin accounts can trade 2 BTC right away, but all fiat payment account types have limits lower than 2 BTC to match their particular risk profiles (see this table for details). Some payment methods with chargeback risk implement a mechanism called account signing that restricts trading activity until a trader proves their integrity to further secure against foul play.

Which payment accounts are affected

Only fiat payment methods are affected by elevated account limits. Altcoin accounts are not affected by anything discussed in this article—every altcoin account can trade up to 2 BTC right away upon creating a payment account in Bisq.

All fiat payment methods in all markets limit total trade size depending on the payment method's risk profile (see this table for details).

Despite these limitations, chargebacks can still be possible for certain payment methods. Bisq reduces this risk with a mechanism called account signing.

Account signing only applies to payment accounts that meet both of the following conditions:

  • used in the following markets: USD, EUR, CAD, GBP, AUD, or BRL
  • is subject to chargeback risk: SEPA, SEPA Instant, Interac e-Transfer, Zelle, Revolut, Chase QuickPay, Popmoney, MoneyBeam, Uphold, and any kind of bank transfer

This means that all payment accounts that deal in currencies not listed above do not require account signing, even if they are subject to chargeback risk.

Account aging

See account age in the offer book.

Account age is no longer used to determine trade size limits for most payment methods. It is still measured, however, and you can see a payment account's age in the offer book before taking an offer, but we caution against using it as a measure of integrity. Older accounts are not necessarily safer.

Practically, this means that all payment methods on Bisq have full selling capability from the moment they are created. Selling limits no longer phase in over time.

Some payment methods implement a variation of account aging called account signing whereby limits are increased in stages over a period of 60 days after signing. More about this below.

If you're interested, details on the AccountAgeWitness object that enables this aging mechanism are here.

Account signing

A graphical overview of account signing.

Account signing limits buying limits of risky fiat payment methods to 0.01 BTC until the trader has bought bitcoin from a seller with a signed payment account, and then gradually phases in full buying limits. Selling limits are unaffected.

In a nutshell, this is how it works:

  • Payment account is created in Bisq for risky payment method
    • Buying is limited to 0.01 BTC per trade until account is signed (see how below)
  • 30 days after signing, buying limits are increased to 50% of maximum
  • 60 days after signing, maximum trade size is allowed

Let's see how this works in practice by looking at an example. SEPA has a maximum trade size of 0.25 BTC, and it requires account signing in order for to enable full trade limits.

First let's observe what happens if a new SEPA account is never signed. Notice how buying limits never increase beyond 0.01 BTC, but selling 0.25 BTC is allowed from day 0.

Time Since Creating SEPA Payment Account (Never Signed) Maximum Trade Size (Buy) Maximum Trade Size (Sell)
Day 0 0.01 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 30 0.01 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 60 0.01 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 90 0.01 BTC 0.25 BTC

If that SEPA account manages to get signed on the same day it's created, it will see its 0.01 BTC limit increased on Day 30. Selling limits are unaffected.

Time Since Creating SEPA Payment Account Maximum Trade Size (Buy) Maximum Trade Size (Sell)
Day 0 - Account Signed 0.01 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 30 0.125 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 60 0.25 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 90 0.25 BTC 0.25 BTC

But if that SEPA account isn't signed until Day 30, it won't see its limits lifted until Day 60. Again, selling limits are unaffected.

Time Since Creating SEPA Payment Account Maximum Trade Size (Buy) Maximum Trade Size (Sell)
Day 0 0.01 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 30 - Account Signed 0.01 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 60 0.125 BTC 0.25 BTC
Day 90 0.25 BTC 0.25 BTC

How to get an account signed

Payment accounts that require signing cannot buy more than 0.01 BTC until 30 days after they are signed. There's two ways to get your account signed.

Buying BTC

To sign your account you have to buy BTC following these requirements:

  • trade amount is greater than or equal to .0025 BTC and lesser than or equal to 0.01 BTC
  • offer must be in a market that requires signing (USD, EUR, CAD, GBP, AUD, BRL)
  • seller's account must have been signed for over 30 days at the time of the signing trade

Through taking an offer you can make sure that the offer fulfils the requirements to sign your account. Making an offer could not sign your account, because taker could be unable to sign your account (signed since less than 30 days, or unsigned).

The Bisq interface makes it easy to determine if an offer can help you get signed: simply look for buy offers with a check mark badge:

Top offer won't get you signed. Bottom offer will get you signed.

In the image above, the offer on top does not have a check mark, but the offer on the bottom does. And it's a valid size (i.e., between 0.0025 BTC and 0.01 BTC), so taking that offer and successfully completing the trade will result in a signed account.

You can see your payment account's limits and signing status at Accounts > National Currency Accounts. Pick an account and look toward the bottom:

Where to see your payment account's limits and signing status.

With your own signed account

Once you have 1 signed payment account, any new payment account you create that requires signing will be self-signed as long as it uses the exact same name as your previously signed account. The payment account can be of a different type (e.g. a signed SEPA account can self-sign a SEPA Instant account), but a payment account created with a name that is even slightly different will not be self-signed.

Payment account types that don't require your full name cannot be self-signed (e.g. Revolut, which only requires an email address) and they cannot self-sign other payment accounts.

Self-signed accounts are immediately signed, but limits are not immediately lifted. This is because they have an age of 0 days, so 30 days must pass for the 0.01 BTC limit to be lifted, and another 30 days must pass for full trading ability to take effect (see tables above).

Backing up and restoring payment accounts

Once your payment accounts have accrued age and been signed, you won't want to give them up. With proper backups, you won't have to—payment accounts can be restored if you ever have to remove/reinstall Bisq, move to another machine, etc.