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Betterment vs Vanguard

Betterment is a great robo-advisor for beginners with low fees, good tools, and tax strategies. How does it compare to Vanguard? Read our comparison chart below.

Betterment offers automatic investing starting at an annual fee of 0.25% of your account balance. There is no fee to open an account and no minimum deposit required. All balances get automatic rebalancing, tax loss harvesting, and access to financial experts.

While Vanguard offers low stock trade prices (starting at just $2) for investors with account balances over $500k. For those with smaller balances, it's best for less active traders, as trade prices go up after 25 trades/year. Vanguard offers 125+ no-transaction-fee mutual fees and 55+ commission-free ETFs. There is no minimum deposit and service fees can be waived by signing up for electronic statements.

Compare Betterment with Vanguard, side-by-side. Read on for an in-depth look, including ratings, reviews, pros and cons.

 Betterment
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Betterment

Vanguard

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Benefits and Features

Stock Trading Less than $50,000: $7 per trade for the first 25 trades per year, then $20.
$50k - $500k: All trades $7.
$500k - $1M: All trades $2.
$1M - $5M: First 25 trades per year free, then $2.
$5M+: First 100 trades per year free, then $2
Options Trading Less than $500,000: $7 + $1 per contract.
$500,000+: $2 + $1 per contract
Annual Fee0.25% for accounts under $100,000; 0.40% for accounts $100,000+ 
Minimum Deposit
$0
$0
Mutual Fund Trading $0 for no-transaction-fee funds. For transaction-fee funds: $20 for account balances less than $500,000; $8 for account balances $500,000+
Commission Free ETFs Around 1,800 ETFs from about 100 other companies
Phone Support
Yes
 
Live Chat Support
No
 
Email Support
Yes
 
Human Advisors
Yes
 
Robo Advisor
 
Assets Under Management
$14 Billion
 
Tax Loss Harvesting
Yes
 
Goal Tracker
Yes
 
Automatic Deposits
Yes
 
Broker Assisted Trades 
$25.00
Customer Service 
Monday-Friday 8am -10pm ET
Inactivity Fee 
$0
Maintenance Fee $20/year. Waived if account owner signs up for e-delivery service OR have at least $10,000 in Vanguard ETFs and mutual funds
Online Platform
Yes
 
iPhone App
Yes
 
Android App
Yes
 
Banking 
No
Mobile App 
Yes
Desktop App 
Yes
Forex Trading 
Yes
Futures Trading 
No
Locations 
No
Online Community 
No
Seminars 
Yes
Virtual Trading 
No
Single Stock Diversification
No
 
Fractional Shares
Yes
 
Taxable Accounts
Yes
 
401k Plans
Yes
 
IRA Accounts
Yes
 
Roth IRA Accounts
Yes
 
SEP IRA Accounts
Yes
 
Trust Accounts
Yes
 
529 Plans
No
 
 

CreditDonkey® Reviews

 Betterment
Annual Fee
Minimum Deposit
Human Advisors
Customer Service
Stock Trading
Options Trading
Mutual Fund Trading
Mobile App
Commissions and Fees
Ease of Use
Research
Pros & ConsPros:
  • No minimum investment
  • Many customized portfolios
  • Automatically invest extra funds
Cons:
  • Limited investment options
  • High fees for large investors
Pros:
  • Large selection of mutual funds and commission-free ETFs
  • Broker assistance is available at no additional cost
  • Easy to use
Cons:
  • Commission structure penalizes frequent traders
  • Customer service wait times
  • Commission costs on non-Vanguard investment options
Bottom LineGreat robo-advisor for beginners with low fees, good tools, and tax strategies... Read full reviewGood choice for ETF and mutual fund investors interested in Vanguard-sponsored investments... Read full review
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What Others View

    Blank fields may indicate the information is not available, not applicable, or not known to CreditDonkey. Please visit the product website for details.

    Betterment: Pricing information from published website as of 04/04/2018

    Vanguard: Pricing information from published websites as of 09/15/2019.

    Which is Better: Betterment or Vanguard?

    Still need help deciding which investing is better? Read the in-depth reviews below. You may also be interested in comparing Betterment or Ally Invest.


    Articles on Betterment


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