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Vanguard

Vanguard

 3.9/5 (582 ratings)
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About Vanguard

This profile has not been claimed by the company. See reviews below to learn more or submit your own review.

Vanguard, founded by Jeff Bogle (who invented index funds), is a long-standing investment company that offers low-cost funds and robo-advising options. Its platform is intended for long-term investors who wish to buy and hold their funds. The company offers mutual funds, stocks, ETFs and options and requires no commissions on certain trades.

Overall Satisfaction Rating

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  • 1 stars

Pros

  • Robo-advisor option
  • Free educational resources
  • Low-cost funds

Cons

  • Lacks features on platform
  • Fund minimums

Bottom Line

Vanguard is one of the largest investment companies in the world and is known for its low-cost funds and robo-advising. It doesn’t have commission fees, but it does require certain fund minimums.

Top Vanguard Reviews

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Rated with 5 stars
Verified

Great variety of good performing mutual funds and ETF - no upfront charges, low fees on both index funds and ETFs - easy to use website, in transferring money from outside account...

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Rated with 5 stars
Verified

When I had an emergency it was fairly easy to get my money. My portfolio was very diversified and I was able to keep abreast of any changes, trends, losses and gains. All in all V...

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What is Vanguard?

Vanguard is a long-standing investment company known for its low-cost index and exchange-traded funds. It’s one of the largest of its kind in the world and has over 30 million investors. It’s not owned by outside stockholders — instead, it's owned by the customers who buy and own its shares, meaning Vanguard can give back its profits to customers through lower costs.

Vanguards offers commission-free ETF, stock and option trades, and the company has over 3,100 mutual funds with no transaction fees. It’s geared toward buy-and-hold investors, especially those looking to build a diversified portfolio from ETFs. Vanguard also has good educational resources for those wanting to learn more about long-term planning.

What is a Vanguard brokerage account?

A Vanguard brokerage account lets you invest in mutual funds or ETFs owned by Vanguard or other companies, as well as other investment products like stocks, CDs and bonds. It’s designed for investors who need more flexibility than Vanguard’s money market settlement fund offers.

How does Vanguard work?

You can start trading Vanguard ETFs, stocks, bonds and more through a money market settlement account. If you want to invest in Vanguard’s mutual funds and ETFs — or those of other companies — you’ll need a Vanguard brokerage account. The easiest way to fund your Vanguard accounts is by linking to your credit union, bank, savings or loan accounts.

When it comes to trading, you’ll have access to a basic trading platform that’s best for placing orders on Vanguard’s website and app. Unfortunately, the mobile view omits data like charting or the day’s change and volume. For certain investment products, like multi-leg options, you’ll have to call in your order with a live broker instead of completing it online.

New investors wanting some help and guidance can take advantage of Vanguard’s Digital Advisory, a service that provides professional money management for $4.50 per year for every $3,000 invested. The service is a robo-advisor that builds a basic index funds portfolio based on your personalized profile. You’ll need a Vanguard brokerage account and an individual taxable account, traditional IRA or Roth IRA to use Digital Advisory.

Vanguard fees

Vanguard charges $0 trading commissions on online trading of stocks, ETFs and Vanguard mutual funds. There also aren’t closing, transfer or inactivity fees. A few mutual funds charge purchase and redemption fees to discourage short-term trading and cover high transaction costs.

The company’s management fees, or expense ratios, are as follows:

  • Mutual funds: 0.10%
  • ETFs: 0.06%
  • Target-date retirement funds: 0.10%

Vanguard also charges a $20 annual service fee for brokerage accounts and accounts with only mutual funds. This fee is waived for customers opting to receive statements electronically. 

If you want to invest in Vanguard’s mutual funds, a minimum of $3,000 is required to fund your account. Vanguard also requires a minimum investment of $1,000 for any Vanguard Target Retirement Fund or Vanguard STAR fund.

Vanguard FAQ

Is Vanguard good for beginners?
Vanguard may be good for beginners — its library of educational resources can help first-time investors get started, but new investors may find it challenging to meet the fund minimums.
Is Vanguard a good investment?
Whether Vanguard is a good investment depends on your needs. Vanguard is known for its low-cost investing and is ideal for retirement savers and buy-and-hold investors.
Does Vanguard have account minimums?
No, there aren’t any account minimums, but there are fund minimums of $1,000 or $3,000, depending on the account.
What types of funds does Vanguard offer?
Vanguard offers mutual funds, ETFs, options and stocks.

Is Vanguard good?

Yes. Vanguard is a trusted leader in low-cost investing due to low expense ratios on index and exchange-traded funds. Its founder, Jack Bogle, invented index funds. Its services are ideal for buy-and-hold and retirement investors looking to build wealth over the long term.

Those new to investing might also appreciate Vanguard’s free educational resources and explainers on its website, as well as its low-cost Digital Advisor service. Active investors looking for a comprehensive trading platform may be better served elsewhere, as Vanguard’s website and app are pretty basic in terms of features.

Vanguard Reviews

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How do I know I can trust these reviews about Vanguard?
  • 3,392,606 reviews on ConsumerAffairs are verified.
  • We require contact information to ensure our reviewers are real.
  • We use intelligent software that helps us maintain the integrity of reviews.
  • Our moderators read all reviews to verify quality and helpfulness.

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Page 1 Reviews 0 - 5
Rated with 4 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: March 4, 2021

I am a non- sexual person. I have a sex, but I do not have relationships or any of the above. Two of the three security questions require answers that make me uncomfortable.

1. "Who was your first Girlfriend/Boyfriend?"

3. "What is the city you were MARRIED in?"

As a non-sexual man, I have NEVER been in a relationship- so BOTH OF THESE questions are not something I can answer. Ask about my GPA, or my CAREER PATH. Ask about my ... anything ELSE!!! Why are two of the three SECURITY QUESTIONS requiring me to be ... in a relationship at some point? OR lying and putting a FORGETTABLE response??? I would prefer if Vanguard could offer a CHOICE of 3 Security Questions out of ... maybe 20?

5 people found this review helpful
Rated with 5 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 4, 2020

I've been a client of Vanguard for about 10 or 12 years. I'm very satisfied with the excellent quality of service they provide, I get my e-statements every month explaining everything down to the penny, their customer service department are very knowledgeable on every aspect of the service, A+ with me, thank you Vanguard.

7 people found this review helpful

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    Rated with 5 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Nov. 26, 2020

    I like that transitioning to a competitor was relatively easy. Also, they gave me time to make the change. When I had an emergency it was fairly easy to get my money. My portfolio was very diversified and I was able to keep abreast of any changes, trends, losses and gains. All in all Vanguard was very easy to deal with. The people I spoke to were knowledgeable and very helpful. When I changed employers I wasn’t able to keep them. Otherwise I would not have switched companies.

    5 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 5 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Nov. 25, 2020

    So far it has been a smooth sign up. It is been a free service and has many helpful tools for learning. They offer various calculators and shows an idea what earning can be. Whatever you want to invest in by utilizing the calculators it help to decide how much you should be investing over time.

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    Rated with 5 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Nov. 22, 2020

    I have been using them for several years now. The website is very easy to use and is very informative for those looking to find new investments or to find information on current investments. Fees are very low to purchase stocks and if you want you can get an advisor at Vanguard to help you invest.

    3 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 17, 2021

    Their customer service says that shortest wait times are between 8-10am and 5-8pm EST. I called at 5pm and have been on hold for almost 2 hours. I plan to hang up at 7pm, so who knows if there's anyone answering phones on the other end of this call.

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    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 9, 2021

    I have attempted 7-8 times to get my online account open and functioning. I get the run around no results, just excuses. This cost me money as I could not make trades when I wanted to. I have spent hours on the phone trying to fix this with 6 different customer service agents and a manager, who is rarely available.

    Be the first one to find this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 31, 2021

    In 2008 Vanguard sent me a check for approx. $400 when they owed me $500. This is a legal trick that insurance companies use to cheat people out of their money. They failed to send me the check for the full amount after numerous calls. After waiting years for the check in 2017 I called them and asked them, where is my money? They said they don't have it and it's not listed on file. After two years, dozens of hours on hold and getting the run around, they FINALLY admitted that the money existed. Then they sent me forms and stalled the payment in every way possible. Finally the $500 check was in hand. They offered no interest, no fees to compensate me for a decade late payment. For 10 years they loaned out my money, collected interest on it and never gave me a penny. Do not trust vanguard.

    2 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 2 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 18, 2021

    I have been investing in stocks and mutual funds since 1977. I bought my first Vanguard fund in 1984. Right now I am in about 20 mutual funds (regular accounts, IRAs, Roth IRAs). About ½ of my funds are Vanguard funds. I am happy with the performance of the Vanguard funds I am in. I am VERY UNhappy with Vanguard’s customer service. In the last six months I have done two simple things (wire money, rollover a Roth IRA to Vanguard from a non-Vanguard account) and both times there have been problems requiring several calls.

    I will spare you the details but 1) it is not always easy to reach a rep- they may give you the opportunity for a callback or they may keep you on indefinite hold. 2) The reps were nice but on four occasions Vanguard reps told me things about their process/system that were not true, 3) Vanguard failed to initiate the Roth IRA rollover until I called them back a month later to find out the rollover status. 4) Their software system is not as intuitive and easy to use as I think it should be. Vanguard was migrating their system during this time, but I do not consider that an adequate excuse for their poor performance.

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    Rated with 5 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 13, 2021

    It helps me manage my investments very easily from any one of my electronic devices. It consolidate accounts into one place and is easy to navigate and understand. It works to help me avoid financial risks.

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    Vanguard Company Information

    Company Name:
    Vanguard
    Year Founded:
    1975
    Address:
    Vanguard P.O. Box 1110
    City:
    Valley Forge
    State/Province:
    PA
    Postal Code:
    19482-1110
    Country:
    United States
    Website:
    investor.vanguard.com