If you are looking to invest in passively managed Mutual Funds, look no further than Vanguard. Vanguard offers a wide range of funds with very low overheads. Thanks to Vanguard, more and more fund companies are offering low cost mutual funds. Before Vanguard, funds with 0.18 expense ratios were unheard of.
I recently opened an account with Vanguard, I thought I’ll write up a quick review.
I used Google Chrome browser on a Mac to open the account and didn’t have any problems. Works fine on Safari as well.
The application process took hardly 10 minutes and was quicker than opening an account with Fidelity (see my Fidelity review). You don’t have to complete the setup process right away. The site lets you save and application and get to it later.
What you’ll need
- Personal information
- Funds you’d like to invest in
- Funding info like bank details if doing an ACH
You’ll be asked if you want to sign up for e-delivery of documents. Choose to sign up to avoid account maintenance fees. You should receive account confirmation emails once you are done.
When I chose to sign up for e-delivery as a part of the account setup process, I got an error page indicating the page couldn’t be found! Once the account was setup, I went to profiles and got this done. Got an email confirming e-delivery.
Initially I couldn’t view the site in Chrome. Turned out I had a rogue extension installed. Wasn’t Vanguard’s fault. If you are having issues with Chrome, disable extensions and try again.
Most funds in Vanguard have a $3000 minimum and some have early redemption fees. Read prospectus carefully before picking funds.
On holding ADRs, Vanguard will deduct ADR fees from your brokerage account as billed by the DTC.
Vanguard is not the best place to buy individual stocks, including Vanguard’s ETFs as their commissions are pretty high.
What I did like
The entire process was very quick. No complaints there. You don’t have to pick the funds right away, you can do it once the account is setup.
There is a wealth of information on the site. Lots of facts and statistics.
I was pleasantly surprised to see a decent discount for Turbo Tax once I signed up. Haven’t done my taxes yet, I’ll be using the discount offered by Vanguard.
Two thumbs up! Easy, quick and un-cluttered. Haven’t checked out the asset allocation tools yet as funds are still pending. Will update this post once I have that ready.
I put up a short slideshow of the account opening process. Enjoy!
Vanguard Account Opening Slideshow
If you liked this, you may also like: Vanguard’s Most Expensive Funds