I'm currently a part time trader, and have only been trading for about two months. I'd like to work with more money than I currently have and I know you need the $25,000 to be considered a day trader by the SEC standards. My question is about the settlement time with trades. Right now I'm working with the three day settlement using a cash account and I'm not getting very far considering I can really only trade about twice a week. I want to borrow money from my mother to work with on top of what I have now. If I have about $30,000 in my account, and I use 6,000 on my first trade (meaning I dipped below the 25,000) will I have to go back to waiting for the three day settlement and not be able to touch that money? I know about free rides and I know about margin trading (but I don't have a margin account so I'm not sure I understand it completely), but I guess I'm asking for a real world example to cement my understanding. I want to spend my days trading several times a day instead of once. Would I have to use only the $5,000 I have above the $25,000 or could I use more and not have to worry about settlement times?