Welcome to my Vanguard Review! (2023)
You probably come across Vanguard and you are wondering if this company is the right fit for you or not?
Before you do anything read this Vanguard review to learn more about it!
What is Vanguard? What do they have to offer?
Find the answers and more below!
Vanguard Review Quick Summary
- Name: The Vanguard Group Inc.
- CEO/Owner: John C. Bogle
- Price: Minimums of $1,000
- Rating: 3.5/5.0
What is Vanguard?
Vanguard, under The Vanguard Group Inc., is an investment management company based in Malvern, Pennsylvania.
The company isn't owned by shareholders, but it's owned by the people who invest in their funds.
Additionally, their owners have access to personalized financial advice, high-quality investments, retirement tools, and relevant market insights that help you build a future.
Vanguard set out in 1975 under a radical ownership structure that remains unique in the asset management industry also, the company is owned by its member funds, which in turn are owned by fund shareholders.
With no outside owners to satisfy, they focus squarely on meeting the investment needs of their clients.
Vanguard's Value of Ownership
Since Vanguard's investors are their owners, they are able to provide:
No conflicting loyalties; so, nothing will get in the way of focusing on their client's interests.
They also act with conviction on the investment themes that are important to them.
Unlike other companies, Vanguard focuses on long term results rather than quarterly results.
Furthermore, they can consistently pass along economies of scale and lower the cost of investing, so they keep more of their returns.
Services of Vanguard
Vanguard Personal Advisor Services
This offers individual investors ongoing collaboration with professionals, also, their advisors work closely with their clients to create personalized plans and help them stick with those plans over the long term.
Estate and tax planning, personal trust services, and other wealth management services are available for ultra-high-net-worth investors.
Vanguard Digital Advisor
This service offers individual investors professional, automated money management.
Moreover, their Robot advisor is powered by their proven investment methodology and invests client assets in their well-diversified exchange-traded funds.
To summarize, it keeps portfolios balanced and in line with clients’ time horizons and risk tolerance.
Vanguard Participant Advice Services
This benefits workers who invest through employer-sponsored retirement plans.
Additionally, their participant experience is customized to seamlessly focus participants on their next best action toward retirement readiness.
Vanguard Institutional Investor Services
This allows partners with the sponsors of defined contribution retirement plans to evaluate investment offerings and deliver custom investment solutions.
Vanguard Institutional Advisory Services
On the other hand, Vanguard Institutional Advisory Services, Vanguard's outsourced chief investment officer (OCIO) service, helps nonprofit organizations and pension plans invest assets and navigate shifts in the regulatory and legal environment.
Help You Invest
The Help You Invest service is a joint venture between Vanguard and Ant Group Company, that provides customized advice for investors in China.
The service also requires low minimum investment and is delivered through the Alipay app, a comprehensive wealth management platform operated by Ant Financial.
Also, the company delivers personal experiences that help individual investors—and institutional investors and financial advisors that offer retirement plans and advice—achieve their goals.
So, whether they’re just starting on the road to retirement, already retired, or anywhere along the journey, they empower individual investors to tackle retirement with confidence.
They offer an array of services to help large businesses construct and deliver world-class retirement plans that attract and retain employees.
In addition, they serve the recordkeeping needs of 403(b), 457, and other defined contribution and nonqualified plans.
Vanguard Retirement Plan Access™ (VRPA) helps financial advisors serve the needs of small and midsize businesses through simple, low-cost 401(k) and 403(b) plans, as well as other types of retirement plans.
Vanguard Retirement Optimizer
This helps financial advisors quickly create, test, and refine robust retirement scenarios.
It simplifies the allocation of assets based on investors’ long-term goals and risk tolerance, enabling advisors to spend more time helping their clients with other critical challenges.
Vanguard Review: Account Creation
Below, you can see the steps you would need to take to create a Vanguard account.
- First, you need to choose an account type to open. ( IRAs, Brokerage, 529 savings, UGMA/UTMA, Small business, or 403(b) services.)
- After you open your account, you will then need to transfer money into your settlement fund. You can use this fund to purchase investments.
- When your settlement fund has been successfully funded then you can now start exploring investments.
- Once you have found an investment that you like you can then place a trade.
Types of Investments You Can Find In Vanguard
Vanguard offers a lot of mutual trust funds and ETFs that you can invest in. However, they also offer more ways that you can invest in. Below, I have listed their investment offerings.
- Mutual Funds
- International Markets
- Penny Stocks
- Advisory Services
There is no information about precious metals IRA on their website. Which is understandable since they largely focus on stocks and ETFs investments.
However, it's still nice to have some physical investments like precious metals IRA to diversify your portfolio.
Vanguard Review: Prices and Fees
One shining quality of Vanguard is its Low-cost funds offerings.
However, if you trade on one of their third-party mutual funds, then you will not be charged any fees or commissions. Also, this applies on nearly third-party ETF in the industry.
They do not require you to have a minimum balance in your account, However, they charge a $20 annual service fee for your account.
On the other hand, you can have this waived by choosing electronic delivery for your account statements and signing up for secure website access.
Also, another way to get this fee waived is if you manage to maintain more than $1 million in Vanguard assets.
You have to keep in mind that different funds in their offerings have different initial investments requirement.
This can range from $1,000 for target date funds up to $3,000 for most index funds and actively managed funds, and you would also need to pay different fees for these funds depending on what kind of retirement account it is held.
However, you can have these fees waived if you have $50,000 in qualifying Vanguard assets
You can also borrow money from Vanguard to use for investment, all you have to do is open a margin account, but keep in mind that their interest is quite high with an average of 6.78%,
Below, you can see their margin interest rates.
$0 to $19,999
$20,000 to $49,999
$50,000 to $99,999
$100,000 to $249,999
$250,000 to $499,999
$500,000 to $999,999
Vanguard Review: Customer Service
Vanguard seems to tackle customer support the old fashion way, they don't offer live chat or email services. So, the only way you can reach them is thru phone which is available during 8 A.M. to 8 P.M. ET, from Monday through Friday.
Also, if you have an account you will also be asked to answer some security questions. So, this makes sure that your account is safe from people trying to impersonate you.
They do have a Frequently Asked Questions page on their website which you can check out and maybe it has the answer to your question,
Also, this doubles as an educational section which aims to help you be more informed about investing.
Vanguard also has a mobile app where you can keep tabs on your investments, this app also provides customer support.
Customer accounts are protected by a two-factor authentication and 128-bit encryption, they also have mobile security features and numerous firewalls that helps protect clients.
Vanguard is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), so this means that each customer can be insured of up to $500,000.
There is also an insurance policy that covers assets worth $49,500,000 and $1,900,000 in cash.
Reviews and Ratings of Vanguard
Below, you can find some of the reviews and ratings of Vanguard:
As you can see, the biggest complain of Vanguard clients is their customer service, it does not come as a surprise since their customer service is quite dated compared to other companies.
What I Like About Vanguard
Large mutual fund selection
Vanguard has more than 3,300 no-transaction-fee mutual funds, and an expanded lineup of proprietary, low-cost, socially responsible mutual funds and ETFs.
Focused on Learning
Investment requires thorough studies and research.
Thus, the broker’s site includes tons of retirement-planning tools, calculators, and resources for investors of all ages.
More so, investors can set up plans for various goals, compare funds side-by-side, screen for funds, as well as project college and retirement costs so that you can meet them.
What I Don't Like About Vanguard
Traditional Trading Platform
Vanguard’s trading platform is basic and lacks the analytical tools typically offered by brokers that support stock trading.
So, this is not good for people who are looking to trade actively.
High Investment Minimums
Most Vanguard retirement funds and the Vanguard STAR Fund have investment minimums of $1,000, and other Vanguard funds carry minimums of $3,000.
However, that initial minimum purchase amount of $1,000 to $3,000 will be too high for many beginner investors.
Complex Commission Structure
It has several tiers depending on how much you have invested in Vanguard’s ETFs and mutual funds.
- First, if you have less than $1 million in Vanguard funds, options trades cost $1 per contract.
- Second, from $1 million to $5 million, the first 25 options trades in a year are free and subsequent trades cost $1 per contract.
- Third, from $5 million and up, the first 100 options trades are free, and $1 per contract thereafter.
Terrible Customer Service Reviews
Review sites flock angry customers who experienced terrible customer service from Vanguard.
So, if you don't have the patience, this is not for you.
Is Vanguard a SCAM?
So to conclude this Vanguard review, Vanguard is NOT A SCAM.
They have been in the industry for quite a while and they offer legitimate services.
However, the company is quite traditional as compared to other trading and investment platforms.
Also, they do not elaborate on GOLD IRAs.
Vanguard Review: Final Thoughts
With investments, comes risks.
Thus, we try to avoid volatility and high-risk investments especially if the money is something that we have worked very hard for.
So, companies like Vanguard might help us in reaching these goals and it is also good practice to diversify our investments.
Investing in precious metals IRA is one way to diversify your investment portfolio and secure your future. This is why I recommend people to check out how precious metals can help them achieve their goals.
This Top rated company may help you with this.
They are a reputable precious metals company that is trusted by hundreds of satisfied customers online! They offer silver and gold IRA; plus, they are willing to help you in every step of the way.
Below, you can see their ratings from trusted websites.